FAIRBURY, NE — Fairbury Public Schools Superintendent Stephen Grizzle is moving on.

"I felt like we're in a good spot here and the all the timing and the circumstances just kind of aligned."

Grizzle let the staff know of his impending resignation during a meeting Monday — a professional development day for staff and a day off for students. His last day will be June 30th.   

"It's very bittersweet," Grizzle told NCN Monday. "I've been getting a lot of nice comments and feedback from staff."

A former superintendent and teacher at Pawnee City Public Schools, Grizzle has been leading the Fairbury school district since 2015. He says he’s proud of what they accomplished in that time.

"The work we've been able to do and accomplish with improving the facilities here in Fairbury has been really rewarding," he said. "I mean we have one of the best shop areas, one of the best vocational areas of any of the schools around. We're very excited about that."

As for what’s next? Grizzle says he’s accepted an interim superintendent position at South Central Nebraska Unified School District #5. It’s made up of Sandy Creek and Lawrence-Nelson schools.

It’ll be a unique challenge as the two schools are splitting into separate districts in 2024. As interim superintendent, Grizzle will only be with the district for one year. He will help prepare Sandy Creek and Lawrence-Nelson to move forward on their own. 

Beginning in the fall of 2024, Sandy Creek and Lawrence-Nelson will have their own superintendents.

"Putting the puzzle pieces together and identifying where the gaps are," Grizzle said of what intrigued him about the 1-year position. "Probably two of the big challenges I see are separating the budgets and identifying the staffing gaps they are going to have."

Grizzle says he was already planning on retiring after the 2023-24 school year so it made sense to take on the challenge. He believes this opportunity will be a good one to wrap up his career with.

"It doesn't happen," he said. "This is a unique situation I don't recall seeing in my time as a superintendent. To be honest, I don't know of a lot of people that would be willing to take that on. But, I don't know, it just really intrigued me."

Grizzle and his family will continue to live in Fairbury. He will officially submit his resignation at the school board meeting in February.