Kentucky superintendent suspended as two other leaders call it quits

Leaders in a handful of districts have announced resignations and retirements as the year winds down.

Matthew Constant, the superintendent of Owensboro Public Schools, was suspended by the district’s school board last week as the longtime educator faces an investigation by the Kentucky State Police.

Matthew Constant, the superintendent of Owensboro Public Schools,
Matthew Constant

Authorities did not provide any details about the criminal allegation made against Constant or the investigation, according to The Owensboro Times. Constant became Owensboro’s superintendent in 2020 and has worked for the district since 2011, having also served as assistant superintendent and chief academic officer. He has also worked for the Daviess County School District, the newspaper reported.

In West Virginia, Nicholas County Schools Superintendent Donna Burge-Tetrick resigned along with a school board member in the midst of what the Charleston Gazette-Mail described as seven years of “construction woes” that dogged efforts to recover from disastrous flooding in 2016. Coincidentally, that was the same year Burge-Tetrick was hired as superintendent.

Earlier in May, Nicholas County Schools had opened the second phase of reconstruction with a bid of $148 million, an amount that is $51 million over the funds remaining for the project, the Charleston Gazette-Mail reported. The previous rebuilding phase was bogged down by disruptions that included a lawsuit between the district and state board of education in 2018, the newspaper added. Burge-Tetrick will remain on the job until June 30.

And Jason Reynolds, the superintendent of one of Arizona’s largest districts, announced that he will also step down in June, a year before his contract would have expired. Reynolds, who became Peoria Unified School District’s superintendent in 2020, was one of the first leaders to reopen classrooms to in-person learning during the COVID pandemic, according to the Arizona Republic.

Jason Reynolds
Jason Reynolds

The district has endured some controversy this year, notably when the school board voted 3-2 against restricting transgender students from accessing bathrooms consistent with their gender identity, the Arizona Republic reported. Reynold was previously the assistant superintendent of leadership and secondary instruction at Paradise Valley School District, also in Arizona.

More superintendents stepping down

In one of the most high-profile retirements of the last week, Superintendent Mark Henry will retire from Cypress-Fairbanks ISD in Texas in December 2023, after more than 40 years in education and 32 years as a superintendent. Henry also served as superintendent of four other districts: Milford, Collinsville, Sulphur Springs and Galena Park ISD.

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Leaders in a handful of other school districts have announced resignations and retirements in recent days:

  • Superintendent Karling Aguilera-Fort is leaving the Oxnard School District (California) for a leadership position at San Francisco USD.
  • Superintendent Kelli Bush is resigning from Elizabethtown Independent Schools (Kentucky) on July 1, The News-Enterprise reported.
  • Boyd K. English, hired in 2018, is retiring from the Albertville City School System (Alabama).
  • Superintendent Tim Johnson will leave the School District of Glenwood City (Wisconsin) on June 30.
  • Roger Reed resigned from S&S Consolidated ISD (Texas) on May 27.
Matt Zalaznick
Matt Zalaznick
Matt Zalaznick is a life-long journalist. Prior to writing for District Administration he worked in daily news all over the country, from the NYC suburbs to the Rocky Mountains, Silicon Valley and the U.S. Virgin Islands. He's also in a band.

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