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Asa Wood principal announces retirement

| February 6, 2007 11:00 PM

By GWEN ALBERS Western News Reporter

Asa Wood Elementary principal Ken Foss is among four employees leaving Libby Public Schools.

The school board during a Thursday meeting also accepted retirements from Asa Wood reading coach Bgee Zimmerman, effective June 7, and Asa Wood maintenance worker Lorry Dotson, effective June 30. Zimmerman and Dotson have worked for the district for 27 and 14 years, respectively.

Libby Middle School gym teacher Tasha Johnson also resigned for personal reasons, effective Feb. 13. Johnson worked for the district for 11 1/2 years. The position will be filled.

A Libby native, Foss will retire June 30 after 25 years with Libby Public Schools. The state allows school employees to retire with a minimum 25 years.

"I need a change," Foss said. "I've lost my energy and my positiveness. You've got to have a lot of energy and I'm really tired. I don't know what I'm going to do at this time."

Foss, 50, graduated from Libby High School, and upon finishing college, began his teaching career in Libby. He has taught middle school reading, physical education, English, math and shop.

Foss later served as dean of students and then assistant principal at the middle school. He has been principal of Asa Wood for five years.

Since becoming an administrator 10 years ago, Foss said he hasn't had a break.

"It's just been 12 months a year, long hours and long days," he said. "In the last 10 years, I haven't golfed, I haven't fished and I haven't hunted. I've just lived this position."

Foss plans to take some time off and would consider returning to work.

"I don't think a person ever really retires. They change professions," he said. "I'm taking a step back and regrouping."

In his retirement letter, Foss told the board he appreciated the opportunities.

"Libby has always been my home and the place I wanted to raise my family and pursue my profession," he wrote. "You have allowed that to happen. I will be forever grateful to you and the Libby School District."

Superintendent Kirby Maki said the district will begin advertising to fill the position.