Nancy Sebring said Thursday she abruptly resigned her superintendent post in the Des Moines Public Schools this week to take care of personal matters before starting as Omaha Public Schools superintendent.
Sebring said she wanted more time to prepare her house for sale, get ready for the move to Omaha and plan her daughter's July 15 wedding. She said she also wants to visit the Omaha district before taking the reins July 1.
Her contract with the Des Moines Public Schools was slated to run through June 30.
“Due to the many personal issues which must be addressed prior to July 1, I respectfully request that the board accept my resignation effective immediately,” Sebring wrote in a resignation letter to the Des Moines school board sent late Wednesday evening.
A statement from Des Moines school board Chairwoman Teree Caldwell-Johnson indicated Sebring informed the board Thursday that she wanted to change the effective date of her resignation as superintendent to May 10.
Sebring said she decided to move up her resignation date after making a trip to Colorado, during which she visited a new grandchild.
She said the Des Moines district's board and staff are in a good position to carry on without her because an experienced candidate from within the district was chosen to serve as interim superintendent.
Under the Des Moines district's succession plan, Associate Superintendent Tom Ahart will serve as interim superintendent, Caldwell-Johnson said.
She said that on Tuesday the Des Moines board will vote on him serving in that role while the district searches for a permanent replacement.
“We understand and appreciate her wish to have some additional time as she prepares for her transition to Omaha,” she said, “and we support her request to make that happen.”
Caldwell-Johnson thanked Sebring on behalf of the school board for her service to the district and community and wished her well.
The Omaha school board voted last month to hire Sebring as the district's next superintendent.
OPS Superintendent John Mackiel is retiring after 40 years with the district, the past 15 years as superintendent.
Omaha School Board President Freddie Gray said Thursday that Sebring's early departure from Des Moines won't have any impact on her contract with OPS.
Nor will it affect the contract amendment the board reached with Mackiel to have him assist during Sebring's transition.
“It won't affect anything here,” Gray said.
Sebring's start date will remain July 1, Gray said.
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