Kauzlarich to leave

New Prague Area Schools Superintendent Larry Kauzlarich informed the school board during a meeting Monday, Jan 14, that he would be leaving the district when his current contract expires on June 30.

Kauzlarich, who retired as superintendent in neighboring Jordan in 2008, joined the New Prague district in July, 2011, as an interim superintendent, and last January he agreed to stay for a second year.

He told board members it was a difficult decision that he continued to wrestle with all weekend.

In a letter, he said the decision was made for two reasons. The first was personal.

“If I were younger, NPAS would be a place I would love to continue working as a superintendent,” he said. “Unfortunately, I’m not getting any younger and I have an intense desire to see as much of the world as I can. Working, while enjoyable, has slowed my traveling. During my travels I have seen older travelers who were struggling to enjoy their experiences because of their age and health. I don’t want to be one of those people, so I need to continue my traveling while I am able to enjoy the full experience,” said Kauzlarich, who will turn 69 soon.

The second reason is jobrelated.

“I would always be working on a year-to-year basis, thus am I staying or am I leaving would always be a question lingering out there. I believe in fairness to the district, you need a superintendent who has plans, when hired, to stay long term at NPAS. That will help the stability of the district.”

Board members were quick to express their disappointment and to thank Kauzlarich for his time with the district. They discussed the process of finding a new superintendent, something the district has gone through four times in the last eight years.

One of the decisions the board will have to make is whether to hire an outside firm to work with the search or to do it in-house. An outside firm can be expensive. One alternative was to work with the South Central Education Cooperative, of which New Prague is a member. That group is involved in superintendent searches in three other districts and would do it at no cost.

Board chair Tammy Pexa, vice chair Kytyn Schoenbauer and clerk Dennis Havlicek will meet and discuss possible alternatives and report back to the full board at its January 28 meeting.

Also at Monday’s meeting, the board elected officers for the coming year. Tammy Pexa will replace Jerry Walerius as chair. Kytyn Schoenbauer is the vice chair, Dennis Havlicek is clerk and Don Dvorak treasurer.