On Monday, District 65 Supt. Hardy Murphy announced his resignation to pursue consulting opportunities, just two weeks before the start of the school year.
"The board and I agreed this is the right time for me to leave," Murphy told staff members at a meeting that morning, according to District 65 spokesperson Pat Markham.
In a prepared statement, he said the decision to leave would allow him to continue making a professional contribution to education while spending more time with his family. He also acknowledged changes coming for the district, as the board prepares a new strategic plan. His last day was Friday, Aug. 9.
A message seeking further comment left at Murphy's home on Monday morning was not returned as of Wednesday night.
Patch readers were quick to comment on the news. Here’s what some readers had to say:
“This is a politically minded community and smart enough to know a school superintendent does not willingly resign a mere 2 weeks before the start of a new school year,” Shirley wrote. “Undoubtedly he got a firm shove out the door. Regrettably, children of District 65 are in big trouble under the guidance of the current school board.”
“Dr. Murphy was the best thing that has happened to District 65 for the past 13 years. He was a Superintendent that represented and supported all students,” commented Melanie.
“I think it's a good move for him to leave,” wrote E-Towner.” He's been in the position for over 10 years. Time to bring in new leadership that will implement programs that will actually help all students achieve their potential. He has been divisive and many talented administrators and teachers have left D65 and others don't want to work in D65 due to his domineering style.”
John L. expressed similar sentiments that “new blood” would be a positive. “Let's not lament the change but shift our focus to the future,” he said. “Let's engage in making this a positive opportunity to improve our schools to the next level.”
What do you think about Murphy's resignation? Tell us in the comments.