Ron Tolman, Jefferson School District 251’s leader, announced Thursday he’s leaving the district after 10 years as superintendent.
Tolman is taking a new job in Brigham City, Utah, as superintendent of the Box Elder County School District. His resignation is effective in August, according to a district news release.
“I’m pretty happy here, I’ve had some great experiences, but I think a person just needs to be ready when an opportunity comes along,” Tolman said.
“I still have a few good years in me, and I just thought, ‘I’d like to try a larger district.’ It’ll be a little bit of a different challenge — more students, more staff and it’ll be nice to have a little more
spending per pupil in a state that funds their students a little bit better than Idaho.”
The district’s school board accepted Tolman’s resignation request at its Wednesday meeting. Tolman’s contract would have ended in June 2017, business manager Guy Wangsgard said, but Tolman asked the school board to be released early from the contract.
Tolman starts his new position July 1, but plans to make periodic trips back to Rigby for the remainder of the summer to help the transition go smoothly.
“I’ll have my foot in both camps for a little while,” Tolman said.
A national search for a replacement will begin immediately. Tolman said the board hopes to secure a replacement by July 1.
Tolman came to District 251 in 2004 from a superintendent position at Lincoln County School District 2 in Afton, Wyo. He cited a number of accomplishments he’s seen in his 10 years in the district, including construction of the new Rigby High School, weathering state funding cutbacks and starting a world language immersion program.
He said his successor should be prepared for working with tight amounts of state funding.
“They’re going to have to be prepared for operating with minimal financial support from the state,” he said. “But, I think we’ve shown good things can happen even when funds are short. And, I think the community has been really supportive of schools in general. They’re investing heavily as taxpayers and in new facilities and I think they’ll get great payoff of that in the long run.”