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Lakewood superintendent to retire at the end of the school year

HEBRON – Lakewood Schools Superintendent Jay Gault will retire June 30, 2015, he announced at last Wednesday’s school board meeting. Board members unanimously accepted his retirement.

“It’s been an honor and a privilege to be superintendent for 10 years here,” he said. Gault also served as Lakewood High School principal for three years, and he’s very happy he could finish his career at the school district from which he graduated.

Gault said the board approved a resolution for the Licking County Educational Service Center to conduct a search for a new superintendent. That process will include special board meetings with most of them held in closed or executive session.

Gault said there is currently no official timeline and there’s been no decision yet as to who will be on a search committee. He said it was important to him to let the board know of his plans to retire as early as possible. “There’s plenty of time for a thorough search,” he said. “I’m excited to see who they’re going to get.”

Board member Forrest Cooperrider said he’s been aware of Gault’s plans to retire for quite some time. “I think everyone knew (Gault’s) retirement letter was coming, so no surprise,” he said. “We are just beginning to look at how we will select a new superintendent. I’m not at all sure how we will proceed.”

“We’re working out the details,” said Licking County ESC Superintendent Nelson McCray. He said the board has several search options and McCray will discuss those options with board members next week. Once an option is chosen, he said there would be an announcement of the open position and the district will publish the steps involved in finding a new superintendent.

“Jay’s going to be hard to replace,” said board member Bill Gulick. “He’s done very well.” He said family concerns influenced Gault’s decision to announce his retirement. “(Gault’s) been a good manager and a good educator.”

As far as finding a replacement for Gault, “We haven’t discussed anything yet,” Gulick said.

In other business Wednesday evening, board members employed Laura Carpico as a 7th grade social studies teacher. Board members also approved supplemental contracts for:

• Courtney Dingess, Freshman Girls Volleyball Coach;

• Stacey Wallace, Middle School Volleyball Coach;

• Meagan Kelley, Girls Basketball Varsity Assistant;

• Chris Pound, Intramural Director: and

• Christa Day, Volleyball – Varsity Assistant (JV Coach).

The board’s next regular meeting is set for 6:30 p.m. on Wednesday, Sept. 10, in the Lakewood High School Library.

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