William Loose, the superintendent of the Ocean View School District, has announced his retirement, the district announced July 12.
The district's board of trustees voted unanimously July 11 to accept Loose's resignation, according to a media release. Kathy Kessler, who recently retired as superintendent of the Huntington Beach City School District, was named interim superintendent and will take office July 30 if the board approves her contract.
Loose, who replaced Alan Rasmussen, has been Ocean View's superintendent since July 1 last year.
According to an agreement signed by Loose and the trustees, he will go on paid leave effective immediately and continue at his current rate of pay and benefits through Oct. 31, when his employment officially ends. He will be available to the district as a consultant until then.
"If we have any questions about anything, he would be available," board President Tracy Pellman said. "That's my understanding."
The resignation agreement states that the district will provide a letter of reference concerning Loose's service as Ocean View's assistant superintendent of administrative services, the job he held from January 2008 until the time he succeeded Rasmussen. However, the agreement does not promise a letter about Loose's work as superintendent.
Pellman declined to provide a reason for that decision. Loose could not be reached for comment.
The superintendent's year at the helm of Ocean View has been turbulent at times. This spring, hundreds of teachers, parents and students protested the school board's decision to increase class sizes in the lower grades — a decision that Loose did not dispute, although he expressed sympathy for those opposed to it.
In August, Loose, the district and two trustees were named as defendants in a lawsuit filed by Ocean View communications supervisor Holly Marvin, who accused the district of pressuring her to resign and harassing her over her age and sexual orientation. The case is scheduled to go to trial in September.
Pellman said Loose's decision to resign had nothing to do with the lawsuit and that the superintendent had simply opted to retire.