Changes are underway in the superintendent positions at three area schools.

The Oneonta City School District Board of Education recently agreed to Superintendent Michael Shea's request for a Sept. 1 start of his retirement, board President Grace Larkin said Thursday. When Shea announced his retirement earlier in the school year, it was to start Jan. 1. Afterwards, Shea said he learned it would be better for the district to have more consistency during the school year.

"It will work out," Larkin said about the change. With the district having a difficult time with the upcoming budget, it would not have been able to find a new candidate before Dec. 31, she said.

Candidates for an interim superintendent are being contacted and the board is waiting to see who responds. It will select the candidate who will be the best fit, as the district gets a more formal search underway.

It was hoped that an interim would start in the summer, so they can work with Shea, possibly a few days a week. A per-diem rate will not be set until it is decided how often the interim is needed.

At the Downsville Central School Board of Education meeting, President Dale Stone said Wednesday that Superintendent Mary Fassett is no longer with the district.

"She wasn't the right fit," he said. He would not say when she left or give any other details because it is a personnel issue. The district is looking for an interim superintendent until a formal search can take place.

At Schenevus Central School, Lynda Bookhard said she gave the board of education her formal notice of resignation in February but had let board members know last year that she would be retiring at the end of the 2011 -2012 school year after more than 40 years in education. She is looking forward to spending more time with her family, she said.

The public is invited April 4 to meet the two candidates for the replace in two separate hour-long sessions, one at 7 p.m. and the other at 8 p.m. in the school cafeteria. The board is expected to make a final decision from 1-2 weeks after that.

Her six years as superintendent have been very productive, she said. Whoever steps in to her position "will find out what an excellent place this is," she said.

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