BLANCHESTER — Blanchester Local Schools Superintendent Dean D. Lynch is retiring from public education effective “end of my contractual duties, July 31, 2021.”
He tendered his letter of retirement to the school board at its reorganizational meeting Monday night, and the board approved it.
The Blanchester graduate served his alma mater for 17 of his 33-year career as a teacher, coach and administrator.
“God has continuously blessed me throughout my career,” stated Lynch. “Especially, the last eight years as superintendent. I will not miss the responsibilities of operating a school district, but I will miss the people I have come to know and worked so close with during my tenure.
“The biggest challenges were restructuring the way we provide instruction to our students during the COVID crisis. And, stretching the district’s budget with our Unrestricted State Grants-in-Aid (State Revenue) being flat-lined for multiple years. Although it was difficult we were still able to improve our facilities, update our bus fleet as well as provide our employees very good salary increases during the past two negotiations.”
“The board is extremely grateful to the many contributions and improvements Mr. Lynch has made to the district’s facilities and benefit of our employees and students,” stated School Board President Kyle Wilson. “We wish him well in his retirement. It is well deserved. The board of education will begin taking the necessary steps to find their next superintendent for the 2021-2022 school year.
Lynch first became Blanchester’s superintendent in January 2013 with a contract that was for two-and-a-half years.
The Blanchester Board of Education unanimously renewed his contract — for two years — in September 2015 despite some local residents opposing the renewal at that board meeting.
“We felt that we had had adequate conversation and adequate hearing from the community, so we decided to” renew Lynch’s contract, said then-board president Chuck Shonkwiler in 2015. “They (those who protested) are speaking for themselves. And the group that was here last night … is not a very large group” or representative of a large portion of the community he said then.
In June 2017 the school board voted 4-1 in favor of Lynch continuing as superintendent for the next year as well as from Aug. 1, 2018 to July 31, 2021. This came in spite of objections from local residents at the meeting.
“It’s nice to get my contract renewed, but it was somewhat bittersweet because of the nature of the meeting,” Lynch said in 2017 in the wake of the board meeting in which a petition was presented asking for Lynch’s resignation.
SOESC leads search
The Blanchester Local Schools Board of Education has selected the Southern Ohio Educational Service Center (SOESC) to assist with the selection of their next Superintendent.
The SOESC has many years of experience in assisting boards of education with Superintendent and Treasurer searches. Over the past several years, the SOESC has assisted Clinton-Massie, East Clinton, Fairfield, and Miami Trace Local Schools with their superintendent searches along with Blanchester Local, Clinton-Massie Local, and Hillsboro City Schools with their treasurer searches.
“We have a vested interest in finding the best possible superintendent for Blanchester and will work with the new Superintendent in continuing to provide high-quality educational experiences for all the students who attend Blanchester Local Schools,” said SOESC Superintendent Beth Justice.
The position has been advertised with numerous professional educational organizations and sent by email to subscribers of selected educational email lists. The application deadline is set for Jan. 20, 2021, and it is planned that the new superintendent will begin on July 1.