Mercer Island School District Superintendent Gary Plano is finalist for position in Oregon

Mercer Island School District Superintendent Gary Plano may be leaving his post here for a superintendent of schools job in Ashland, Ore.

He informed school district staff Thursday evening, by email, that he is a finalist for the job in Oregon.

"As fate would have it, the Ashland superintendent [of schools] position opened, and I applied for consideration of being Ashland's next superintendent," he said in a letter to school district employees. "I learned late this afternoon that I am one of three finalists for the job."

Plano has a second home in Ashland.

"I have always wanted to live in Southern Oregon and couldn't pass up an opportunity to work and live in a community that I have grown to love," he continued.

Next week, Ashland School District board members will be making a site visit here. Following that visit, the interview process will involve community and staff in Ashland. Plano said he wanted to tell his staff directly because the interview process is public.

Plano took over from Superintendent Cyndy Simms when she resigned her job here for a similar job in Southern California in 2007. He was the interim superintendent prior to taking the permanent position in 2008.

In the letter, Plano wanted to thank his staff and the School Board. "I extend my deep appreciation to you and especially to the Mercer Island School District's Board of Directors for all you do in making this a great school system. I'm sure the next two weeks will bring excitement and anticipation. I will keep all of you appraised as I move through the process."



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