NEWBURYPORT – In the wake of Superintendent Marc Kerble’s announcement he’d be retiring at year’s end, Mayor Donna Holaday put aside her differences with the district’s chief administrator to laud him for his commitment to education and the city’s kids.
Though the relationship between the two fell on rocky times over the resignation of Kerble’s second in command, Holaday said this week that strife between the two was overblown.
“I just think there were things that I disagreed with him on how he responded and handled,” said Holaday. “That’s going to happen when you’re in two leadership positions. We always continued to work together – there’s no question about that. Even during the more difficult situations we continued to always be professional and work together despite some comments back and forth and articles in the newspapers that fueled some of that.”
Disagreements aside, she offered praise for the superintendent for how much he gave to the district over the past three years.
“He’s given so much of his life to education,” said Holaday. “We had a wonderful meeting Thursday night, and what I said to him is I’ve never met the kind of person who has the kind of passion and love for education he has. It’s all about the kids. He was everywhere. I think given some of the challenges that have happened in the district, he weighed all of his options and made the decision that was in his best interest, to retire.”
With two top leaders vacating the central office the same year, and the district still attempting to fill a Director of Pupil Services position left vacant by former Special Education Director Karen Brann, who resigned amid personal problems, Holaday declined to engage in a conversation about administrative turnover.