NEW CANAAN, Conn. — After a 10-year career in New Canaan, Superintendent of Schools Mary Kolek announced Tuesday she is set to retire at the end of the current academic year.
Kolek, a longtime educator who became superintendent in July 2012 after the retirement of David Abbey, said the decision to retire was not one she took lightly.
“As you might imagine, the decision to transition from a career and community that I love and to which I am deeply committed has been difficult,” Kolek wrote in a letter to the Board of Education.
“It has, however, been made easier because of my understanding that the New Canaan Public Schools is, by design, a system; one whose strength lies not in any few individuals, but in the collective power generated and sustained by a culture and set of structures and processes that reflect a long standing commitment to excellence, dedication to service and an abiding respect for learners and learning as the community's most valuable asset and key strategy for success.”
Upon her retirement, which will go into effect June 30, Kolek said she and her husband plan to move to North Carolina.
Kolek’s career in education spans 38 years. In 2004, she joined the district as deputy superintendent, a position she held until being promoted to superintendent. Before arriving in New Canaan, Kolek spent six years as the principal of Weston High School.
“The privilege of leading this district will no doubt stand throughout my life as the pinnacle of my career,” she wrote. “New Canaan is an extraordinary place that stands as a model for what public education can and should be if we value each individual as a learner and work purposefully to grow intellectual curiosity, scholarship, innovation and a collective commitment to others and to community.
“It is my great honor to serve as Superintendent of the New Canaan Public Schools, and I look forward to working with the Board and leadership team in order to ensure a smooth transition to the next school year.”