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Retiring superintendent Dr. Marcus Newsome will continue to pray for Chesterfield Schools

Posted at 3:34 PM, Oct 13, 2015
and last updated 2015-10-13 15:35:43-04

CHESTERFIELD COUNTY, Va. -- Chesterfield Schools Superintendent Dr. Marcus Newsome has announced his retirement effective July 2016. Newsome has served as superintendent for 10 years.

"For the past decade, I have been blessed beyond measure to serve as the educational leader for one of the most exceptional communities in America. I have loved and cherished my work and the relationships built with our amazing students, teachers, staff, administrators, parents, faith leaders, business leaders and elected officials," Dr. Newsome said. "Several years ago when we were experiencing unprecedented funding cuts and facing new and more rigorous Virginia Standards of Learning tests, I made a commitment to the Chesterfield County School Board to lead our school division out of tough times. I have remained true to my commitment."

While he did not expressly state why he was retiring at the end of the school year, Newsome said Chesterfield Schools have changed a lot during his decade at the helm.

"During the depths of a national economic recession, operational and capital funding for our schools was slashed by almost $250 million. Nonetheless, in partnership with the School Board, educators and the community, we overcame those challenges and transformed this school system into a national leader in 21st-century learning and global citizenship," he said. "Our schools are safer today because of the investments we have made in personnel and technologies such as our visitor management systems and door-locking systems. Investments in prekindergarten now ensure that more students are prepared to succeed in school."

Newsome said he decided to publicly announce his retirement in October in order to give the Chesterfield School Board time to work with the community to find the next superintendent.

"This is a bittersweet moment for me, as I am saddened to leave colleagues and friends, yet excited and optimistic about the next phase of my life," he said. "I will continue to be your biggest fan; and I will continue to include you in my prayers."

More than 59,000 students attend Chesterfield Schools, making it one of the largest school systems in Virginia.