ATLANTA - Atlanta Community Schools is looking for new leadership following the resignations of Superintendent Teresa Stauffer and school board President Janette Sarkozi. Board Vice President John Fazekas read the resignation letters during Thursday's board meeting.
Both Stauffer and Sarkozi were absent from the board meeting, but Fazekas read their letters of resignation. Stauffer's stated that "after much prayer and consideration of what is best for the achievement of all ACS students, I am resigning as superintendent/principal of Atlanta Community Schools effective May 1, 2012, or until an interim superintendent is in place."
Sarkozi's letter of resignation was similar. "After much careful thought and prayer, I've come to the conclusion that the best thing for our students is for me to resign. This letter shall serve as my resignation from Atlanta Community Schools Board of Education and is effective immediately. I'm thankful for the opportunity that I've had to serve the students of this district."
"Personally, I think the resignations are a huge loss for the district," Fazekas said.
There were mixed emotions from community members who were present at the meeting, but the majority applauded after Fazekas read the two resignation letters. During public comment seven people requested time to share opinions about the school, board, and the resignations.
Doug Stauffer addressed the public and board about the resignation, and thanked the board for its support throughout the years.
"When we first came here I thought we'd be here for a while. I know that Terry did her best and she wants what's best which is why she resigned, but I'm not looking forward to moving. Tonight will probably be the last night that I walk out that door, for the very last time," Stauffer said. "I'm sorry it didn't work out, I really am."
Other community members spent their time questioning board conduct, funds, legal fees, and special education. The board members listened to each individual and then accepted the resignations.
The board will hold a special meeting May 10 at 6 p.m. in order to fill the board seat.
"Anyone who is interested in the position can apply, but the deadline is May 7," Fazekas said.
The board also will have a special meeting on April 26 at 6 p.m. to consider a new interim superintendent. Those who are interested should apply by the meeting date deadline.
In other business, a third resignation was announced during the meeting. Scott Hitchcock, director of transportation and facilities, resigned after five years of service and will be moving to another area. His resignation letter states that it, "is due, in large part, to the level of relentless hostility that we have observed by many in our community."
Hitchcock will finish out this school year and said he will do whatever is needed to help with the transition.
Emily Siegmon can be reached via e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org or by phone at 358-5687.