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Education

Linda Lane To Leave Pittsburgh Public Schools

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90.5 WESA

Pittsburgh Public Schools Superintendent Linda Lane has announced she will let her contract expire in June 2016 and will not seek an extension. Lane first served as deputy superintendent and spent the last five years in her current role.

“This is a bittersweet decision for me as there is so much about this job that I truly love and will definitely miss," Lane said in a statment. "After 44 years in public education, I believe I have more chapters left in me where I hope to utilize my experience in education and my passion for promoting learning for Pittsburgh’s children that might include college-level teaching, writing and work in support and development of school leaders.”

Lane will continue in her role through this school year. She didn’t specify why she is stepping aside.

“I’m announcing this now because I’ve been asked by a number of community members about my intentions and thought it most appropriate to put that question to rest well in advance of the expiration of my current contract,” she said. “Most importantly, I want to support our board with the ample time and opportunity necessary to seek the next leader for this district who will continue the hard work of education reform with our students at the forefront.”

Pittsburgh Mayor Bill Peduto issued a statement on Lane’s announcement, thanking her for her time, energy and dedication.

“The City of Pittsburgh has enjoyed a strong partner in Linda Lane in her many years of leadership with the Pittsburgh Public Schools,” Peduto said. “Dr. Lane’s accomplishments -- from being the first African-American woman named full-time superintendent, to her stewardship of the Pittsburgh Promise, to improvements in PPS graduation rates -- are great, and she has served Pittsburgh’s young people with heart, wisdom and conviction.”

Peduto said his administration is ready to work with parents, students, community representatives, foundations and organized labor in a local or national search for a new superintendent. Several local officials are calling for a national search. Pittsburgh Promise Executive Director, Saleem Ghubril said he’d like to see a Talent City-like search similar to how Peduto built his administration.

“Dr. Lane has been a steady hand guiding the ship of our school district to its true north: a high quality education for every student; black, brown or white, rich or poor, and regardless of their need or exceptionality," Ghubril said. "We need to find the very best superintendent who will not only continue her work, but take it to higher levels not yet seen.”

School Board President Thomas Sumpter said the board is grateful for Lane’s service.

“We appreciate Dr. Lane’s advance announcement, which affords us the opportunity to conduct a thorough search for her successor in a timely manner,” he said. “We will continue to work closely with Dr. Lane throughout this school year and look forward to her leadership and support. Only the very best is wished for Dr. Lane as she moves on to the next chapter of her life.”