Aurora Public Schools superintendent John Barry retiring

AURORA, Colo. - Aurora Public School superintendent John L. Barry is retiring next year.

Barry is expected to speak about his decision at Tuesday's APS Board of Education meeting.

He made the announcement in a letter to the community.

"When I started in APS in 2006, I gave my word to the Board of Education that I would serve as Superintendent for at least five years," Barry said in the letter. "This year, I will complete my seventh year."

Barry said he plans to leave in July 2013 because he wants the position filled by the current board of education. Barry was concerned that three, possibly four new members, will be elected to the board in November 2013.

"Even though my contract was out to 2014, I would like the current experienced board to have the opportunity to select my successor," Barry said.

In his letter, Barry touted some of his accomplishments including reducing the drop-out rate from 10 percent to 4.6 percent, graduation rates have increased from the 40th percentile to over 60 percent and truancy has been reduced by over 29 percent.

Barry is proud that APS has been home to the Colorado secondary principal of the year, Colorado elementary principal of the year, Colorado Board of Education of the year, Colorado teacher of the year, Colorado assistant principal of the year and even Barry has named superintendent of the year.

"Although my decision has been a very difficult one to make, I want you to know I am proud of what our team has accomplished over these many years," said Barry.

Barry said his family plans to continue to live in Aurora and his goal is to never pack another box again.

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