Nancy Van Doren discusses long-term planning

Arlington School Board Chairman Nancy Van Doren explains how proposed high-school boundary adjustments fit into the growth plan for the school system during remarks at the Nov. 3, 2016, School Board meeting.

Efforts by the Arlington school system to get a better grip on why employees leave their jobs are not moving as fast as at least one School Board member expected.

“We continue to work on that – it’s something that we are gearing up to do,” Superintendent Patrick Murphy said on May 9 of plans to develop more extensive interviews with educators and other staff upon leaving employment.

When might some information be forthcoming, asked School Board member Nancy Van Doren, who has pressed to find the reasons people are leaving their jobs.

“It’s a work in progress. My hope is that we are going to be able to have something to you perhaps over the summer,” Murphy responded.

School Board members on May 9 formally approved a new batch of 22 resignations (as opposed to retirements). Erin Wales-Smith, the school system’s interim assistant superintendent for human resources, said many of those departures are for what might broadly be termed personal reasons – from moving out of the area to a life event like having a baby.

Murphy said that there has been “a low response rate” on surveys asking for the reasons employees are leaving, so new approaches will be attempted.

“Before people leave, we’re trying to solicit that information,” the superintendent said. “We’re trying to make connections with folks, to do that on an individual basis. We continue to look at different strategies.”

Van Doren suggested the school system needed to get more facts on why staffers depart before the beginning of the next budget cycle.

Right now, she said, “we have a dearth of information.”

(3) comments


Yes many do exit for life events , but so many are leaving due to lack of discipline in schools , and the unspoken safety issues such as teacher assaults , threats , lack of support administratively and to many issues get thrown under the rugs and never addressed . Our our safety and sanity is more important then the counties test scores .


Working for APS is just a paycheck for employees who don't live in the County. The School Board's Progressive Socialist agenda isn't agreeable to many employees' moderate political beliefs. Travel to Arlington is getting to be expensive via Express Lanes or time spent commuting via non-Express Lanes. The so-called Arlington Education Association, which is constantly harassing the School Board for more pay and benefits for APS employees, isn't even in Arlington, nor do the AEA employees who endorse Arlington School board candidates live in Arlington. Bottom line, benefits of working for APS aren't worth the aggravations.


I once was unhappy about the number of parents who own Arlington condos which they once lived in but which they now rent after moving to single family homes outside Arlington, while continuing to send their kids to APS, but I realized that that's what you get with one political party running everything in the County for decades.

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