Mack to pack at end of school year

Breaking news from the MN Sun-Post:

Stan Mack, superintendent of Robbinsdale District 281 Schools since 2000, has announced his intent to retire at the end of the 2008-09 school year.

The announcement came Thursday, Oct. 23, following a closed-door meeting with the school board on his quarterly evaluation. The session followed a regular board meeting.

Mack’s three-year contract expires June 30, 2009.

“I’m saddened,” Board Chair Patsy Green said. “We have a lot on our plates right now.”

In a letter to the board, Mack said he had been considering retirement for six months.

“Based on many conversations with my wife, Margaret, my sons Stashie, Mikhail and Kiehlor, and several close friends and colleagues, I have determined that nine years as superintendent of schools for Robbinsdale Area Schools is long enough,” Mack’s letter stated. “I am ready to open the door for new opportunities in my life.”

Compliance with the terms of his three-year contract will qualify Mack for severance, payment of any unused annual leave and other provisions, as well as full family health insurance at current benefit levels, until he reaches the age of 65.

Green said Mack distributed a letter to board members on the afternoon of Oct. 23, outlining his intent not to negotiate a new contract.

“When he was hired, Stan Mack was exactly what this district needed,” Green said. “He has always operated with the highest integrity and has always given us 150 percent of his effort. His open door policy has served the district really well.”

Green said Mack’s retirement makes passage of the upcoming referendum even more crucial.

“Now, more than ever, it is important to pass a referendum to make this district attractive for candidates to apply for the superintendent’s position,” Green said.

Mack’s letter noted that his nine years as District 281 superintendent make him “the third longest-serving school superintendent in the history of Robbinsdale Area Schools.”

“The past eight years have been a joy,” Mack said.

He will not retire from professional education, Mack’s letter stated.

“I will be considering pre-K-12 administrative opportunities and other higher education teaching opportunities, beginning in the fall of 2009,” the letter stated.

Mack, 58, is a resident of Fridley. His wife, Margaret Leibfried, is principal at Fridley Middle School.

Prior to coming to District 281 in July 2000, Mack was assistant superintendent for the Osseo District 279 and Burnsville school districts. He was the superintendent in the Northfield and Eveleth school districts, and a central office administrator in the South St. Paul School District. Mack began his career in public education as a special education teacher in South St. Paul in 1972.

It hasn’t been a joy for us, Supt. Mack. I suspect this announcement is a last-ditch effort to help pass the referendum. We’ll see if it makes a difference, as many on the school board are are also blame for the mess we’re in (Patsy Green is at the top of the list).  The search for a competent replacement is on. Our schools deserve better leadership.

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2 Responses to “Mack to pack at end of school year”

  1. rdalekids Says:

    I commend Superintendent Mack for doing what he should have done last fall. We would be in better shape if Mr Mack would have made his decision before 2 week from an election. Now I hope that the School Board will START to make decision that are looking for the best interest of District 281 rather than to cover for Superintendent Mack.

    Everyone please continue to press the School Board to make ALL the changes needed to bring District 281 back to local control.

  2. maryjanedoh Says:

    The pressure is on so he took the safe way out – and that’s fine. When the tax grab fails he can walk away. If per chance it does pass he can always change his mind and try to hold onto his job, but the board would be well advised to not allow his comeback. They would also be well advised not to spend a lot of money on the search for a replacement.

    Let’s not make the same mistake Minneapolis did when they spent over $200,000 on a search for a super, found one and patted themselves on the back for “practicing diversity”. But then they kicked Thandiwe Peebles to the curb the minute she brought the problem of unruly students back to the parents where it belongs.

    It didn’t jibe with their socialist “takes a village” agenda so they ran her out of town. Let’s keep it local and find a new leader amongst our own citizenry. Maybe someone in the district is worthy of a promotion.

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