Superintendent Smucker resigns from PUSD
Prescott Unified School District Superintendent David Smucker publicly announced Wednesday he will be leaving the district at the end of the school year.
Smucker notified the district's governing board Tuesday, board President Tina Seeley said. His resignation is effective June 30.
According to a press release issued by the district Wednesday morning, Smucker indicated he "decided to change the course of my current career goals, and will be considering new opportunities in the field of education."
Seeley said the board will consider how and when to select a new superintendent at its Jan. 13 meeting. During that same meeting, the board is expected to set plans on how to restructure the district's elementary schools and middle schools. The board voted Dec. 2 to close two of its five elementary schools and restructure its two middle school campuses.
With the K-8 restructuring already on the governing board's agenda for 2015, Seeley questioned whether the district would immediately start a full superintendent search, suggesting Assistant Superintendent Joe Howard could lead PUSD until the board picks Smucker's permanent replacement.
When the governing board selected Smucker as superintendent in 2010, the district contracted with the private, nonprofit Arizona School Boards Association for its nationwide search. Seeley, who served on the selection committee in 2010, recalled the search process was time-consuming, even with ASBA services.
ASBA also keeps a pool of interim superintendent candidates for districts across the state.
Smucker's departure at the end of the 2014-15 school year will mark five years with PUSD.
"We're very sad to see him go; he's done great things for our district," Seeley said. She quickly added, "We're very happy for him."
The district's announcement highlighted the unification of PUSD's systems, professional development programs and technology improvements, all occurring under Smucker's leadership.
"It has been a genuine pleasure working for the Prescott Unified School District the past four and a half years," Smucker wrote in his resignation letter. "I have enjoyed working with a fine staff of professionals, and I will miss my associations here. I wish you and the Prescott Unified School District continued success in all of your future endeavors."
Seeley said she understood Smucker planned to return to Colorado with his family. Before coming to Prescott, he worked for the Garfield Re-2 School District in Rifle, Colorado, as a high school principal for four years before becoming the district's assistant superintendent in 2006 and superintendent in 2008. He was previously an administrator at schools along Colorado's Front Range.
Smucker has a bachelor's degree in physical education from Northern Illinois University and a master's degree in educational leadership from University of Northern Colorado.
Smucker and other district officials could not be reached for comment Wednesday because they were in Phoenix attending ASBA conferences.
Follow reporter Les Bowen on Twitter @NewsyLesBowen.
This article was first published on dCourier.com Wednesday, Dec. 10, at 8:25 a.m.