Retiring Elizabethtown-Lewis Superintendent Gail Else.
After 39 years in education and nine years of service as the Superintendent of School for the Elizabethtown-Lewis Central School, Gail Else will officially retire as of June 30.
“I’ve been all over the place, and I’ve worked a long time in education and this is going to be the last piece of my career,” Else said.
The school board approved the motion to accept Else’s letter of retirement at the March 29 meeting.
Else is the mother of two and now a grandmother to a 9-month old, Olivia. She said she feels this is the right time to leave the education field to be with her family.
“My kids live in Maui and in California and it’s more fun with a granddaughter than I could have imagined,” Else said. “I’m looking forward to spending more time with them.”
Else said she also hopes to use her time to get back into the art industry and begin to sell artwork at some point.
The board has not met to discuss their plan for hiring a new superintendent. Else said she is going to spend the next few months ensuring an easy transition.
“It’s important to me to make sure that everything is prepared for the next person that comes in to make sure everything can roll smoothly,”Else said.
School Board President Brett Sicola said the board will meet soon to discuss possible search efforts and hopes for the community’s support in the process.
Sicola said it has been a pleasure working with Else during his time on the board.
“Gail has brought a lot to the district over the last few years and we wish her the very best,” he said.
Else began her career as an art education teacher 39 years ago and later made the move to administration at Massena Central School.
Else said she feels her time spent at Elizabethtown-Lewis has been very fulfilling and some of her greatest memories at the school come from the, “generous and welcoming community.“
“One of the things that I’ve really appreciated has been the community support, they are very interested in their school being successful and they are very interested in providing the resources to do that,” Else said.
Some of the challenges before the new superintendent takes over will be the Race to the Top Program, continued enrollment decreases and need for increased state aid, Else said.
“I feel very comfortable with how I’m leaving the district and we have the potential to do very well in the future for the next person, and I’m sure they will find someone equally as competent to carry on,” Else said.