Archive for Thursday, February 9, 2012

Three long-time Lawrence public schools administrators to retire

From left, division director of human resources Bob Arevalo, Free State High School Associate Principal Ted Berard and Southwest Middle School Principal Trish Bransky have announced their plans to retire on June 30.

From left, division director of human resources Bob Arevalo, Free State High School Associate Principal Ted Berard and Southwest Middle School Principal Trish Bransky have announced their plans to retire on June 30.

February 9, 2012


Three veteran administrators, who have more than 100 years of education experience among them, will retire from the Lawrence school district at the end of the school year.

Southwest Middle School Principal Trish Bransky, Free State High School Associate Principal Ted Berard and division director of human resources Bob Arevalo have announced their plans to retire on June 30.

“It is going to be a big loss for the district,” Superintendent Rick Doll said, noting that the district had been aware that all three were considering retirement.

Both Berard and Bransky have held leadership positions since their schools opened in the mid-1990s.

Bransky, who has nearly 30 years with Lawrence public schools, became principal at Southwest Middle School when the building opened in 1995 as a junior high school. Before that Bransky taught gifted education at Lawrence High School and was the assistant high school principal.

In August, Bransky was one of four principals who oversaw the transition from a junior high school to a middle school.

“I’m glad she hung around to lead us through the transition process,” Doll said. “That was an effort we worked very, very hard on. And she led the effort districtwide and obviously led the effort at Southwest.”

During Bransky’s time at Southwest, the school has earned a Governor’s Achievement Award as a top-performing school and was named an exemplary middle school by the Kansas Association of Middle School Administrators.

“She has exceptional leadership and communication skills with the public,” Doll said. “She has been an exceptional administrator.”

Berard has been at Free State High School since 1997. Before that he was a teacher, federal programs project director and assistant principal in the Turner school district in Kansas City, Kan.

At Free State, Berard focused on special education, technology and discipline.

“He does so many things behind the scenes that makes things work at Free State,” Doll said.

Arevalo also has had a long history with the school district. In 1983 he was hired as principal of Centennial School, an elementary that is now closed, and became principal at Hillcrest School in 1991. In 2001, Arevalo was named director of human resources with oversight of classified personnel. In 2010 he assumed responsibility for certified employees as well. Human resources oversees the payroll and benefits for 1,800 employees.

“He never complains, always takes on whatever we give him and completes it to the absolute best of his ability,” Doll said.

The district hopes to find replacements for each position before the school year ends.


Gayla Bieker 6 years, 4 months ago

Always an adjustment when people leave their career but looking forward to getting some new fresh blood from new employees. Time to get new ideas and hopefully get aggressive, younger people that are motivated and ready to dig in and work for our students, parents and our schools.....

3up3down 6 years, 4 months ago

What a pipe dream!!!! They will only use the Peter Principle and put one of their own in there that they control and get to think there way. Fresh blood.....ya right!

Bob Forer 6 years, 4 months ago

How bout if we don't hire replacements, and instead divert the money saved to the classroom.

GMom05 6 years, 4 months ago

Why are all these administrators retiring at the same time? It makes me wonder if there's something on the horizon they would rather not be here to deal with. As schools are tagged for closure expect to see teachers saying goodbye to USD497 too.

Getaroom 6 years, 4 months ago

Oh, because it is "The Great Retirement Conspiracy of 2012"! Geez!

Matthew Herbert 6 years, 4 months ago

might have something to do with the district's race to move away from the traditional grading system....

CardHawkFan 6 years, 4 months ago

Congrats Teddy B!!! You're a good man and you will be missed!

Eric Neuteboom 6 years, 4 months ago

I can not express enough how sad I am to see Trish Bransky retiring. I am of course very, very happy for her personally, but her insight and leadership will be missed!

Matthew Herbert 6 years, 4 months ago

I'm a little bit sad for these three that the BEST photos the JW could find for them were the ones used above. After years of service to the community, here's a grainy old stretched photo. Could we fuzz out Bob's photo a little more? Is he in the witness protection program? Could we stretch the image a little more for Bransky? Heavily distorted... Geeeesh.

DanR 6 years, 4 months ago

I agree. The images are ridiculously bad even for web standards. The LJW has such great photography overall, so this is an unusual slip in sensibility and execution... I hope.

Scott Morgan 6 years, 4 months ago

I know Ted from a few community functions. In real life, Ted is runway model ready, the pic is awful. Thanks Ted for all you did and will do.

Mike Edson 6 years, 4 months ago

Congratulations to all three! A special thanks to Bob Arevalo. Several years ago you gave me a chance to try something new and make a difference in the school district. Thank you for the opportunity to succeed. You have my most sincere gratitude.

Paul R Getto 6 years, 4 months ago

Thanks to you all for your service. Leadership is hard, but necessary. Education critics and all who post on this award-winning site should remember TR's words:

"It is not the critic who counts: not the man who points out how the strong man stumbles or where the doer of deeds could have done better. The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena, whose face is marred by dust and sweat and blood, who strives valiantly, who errs and comes up short again and again, because there is no effort without error or shortcoming, but who knows the great enthusiasms, the great devotions, who spends himself for a worthy cause; who, at the best, knows, in the end, the triumph of high achievement, and who, at the worst, if he fails, at least he fails while daring greatly, so that his place shall never be with those cold and timid souls who knew neither victory nor defeat." "Citizenship in a Republic," Speech at the Sorbonne, Paris, April 23, 1910 === Good luck, citizens.........

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