City schools Superintendent Janice M. White said Tuesday she will retire next July from the most enjoyable job of her 37-year career in education.
“This is the happiest I have been in my professional career,” she said.
White, 60, has spent 13 years in the city school district, the past five of them as superintendent of the 6,900-student district, which covers the city of Saratoga Springs as well as parts of five surrounding towns.
She joined the school district in 1999 as director of elementary and middle school education and was appointed deputy superintendent in 2001. She later succeeded longtime schools Superintendent John MacFadden in 2007.
“I love this work, this district and this community,” White said during an afternoon news conference.
Regina Gapczynski, president of the Board of Education, praised White’s leadership and dedication to students. She said that White is leaving the school district in excellent fiscal and academic condition.
She said White’s philosophy of “every child, every day” has served the district very well.
“She will be missed,” Gapczynski said.
The city school district has had no school tax increases in two of the past three years, despite significant reductions in state aid. Officials held the line on taxes without staff layoffs, using attrition instead, White said.
The Board of Education was expected to accept White’s retirement, effective July 1, 2012, “with our sincerest appreciation and most profound regret” later Tuesday at a board meeting at the Greenfield Elementary School.
Gapczynski said the board will launch an internal and external search for a new superintendent with help from James Dexter, superintendent of the Washington-Saratoga-Warren-Hamilton-Essex BOCES.
White is paid $171,000 per year. She did not accept a raise in the 2011-12 school year.
She is looking forward to spending more time with her family, including her 2-year-old grandson, and increasing her volunteer involvement in several local organizations, White said.
White also hopes to continue teaching as an adjunct faculty member at the Sage Graduate School, where she earned a doctoral degree in educational leadership in 2009.
During her tenure, the district placed an emphasis on 21st century skills at all grade levels, including technological improvements. For example, a new 21st Century Academy was launched this year for seniors at the high school.
White said it has been gratifying to see the district’s progress reflected each year in The Business Review report on 85 school districts in the region. The Saratoga Springs City School District has been in the top 10 on this list for six of the past seven years and places first each year among city school districts.
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