Dr. Whatley gives notice - WALB.com, South Georgia News, Weather, Sports

Dr. Whatley gives notice

By Jennifer Emert - bio | email

ALBANY, GA (WALB) -  After nine years in charge of Dougherty County Schools, Dr. Sally Whatley is retiring.

The announcement came as a shock to most school board members. Dr. Whatley is in the last year of her contract and said today she's been thinking long and hard and praying about this decision. Now the board will have to decide what they want in a new Superintendent.

Finding the words to end a 33 year career in education didn't come easy.  "In doing this I'm mindful of the enormous pride I feel," said Whatley.

Dr. Sally Whatley announced she will resign as soon as the board finds her replacement. Whatley explained since she's taken the reigns graduation rates have increased 25 percent, drop out rates have decreased, and two schools have twice been named Georgia Schools of Excellence, but wouldn't single out a proudest moment.

"It's just amazing the efforts people make on behalf of children, we've been very fortunate to continue to grow partnerships with parents I think that's a strong relationship," said Whatley.

Board members said they'll have big shoes to fill.

DCSS Board Chairman David Maschke described her as "Always professional, knew what she was doing with curriculum, was through in her research."

They heard from the Georgia School Board Association who have offered to assist in the search for a replacement.

"It's going to be without question certainly for the board the most important decision that we're going to make or have made," said Maschke.

Only one board member has participated in a superintendent search.

Dr. Whatley hopes her replacement can build on the success the system has recently experienced. "A continuation plan is very important to me and when you reach this point in your tenure as superintendent and the system has made significant progress you want that progress to continue."

The Board is expected to have a special called meeting next week to discuss exactly what they want to look for in a new superintendent and whether they'll use the Georgia School Board Association to help them with that task.

If the school board decides to use the state association, it will cost more than eight-thousand dollars to conduct the search.

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