On Thursday, Dec. 21, a special meeting was held for the Anna Independent School Board of Trustees, where Superintendent Pete Slaughter presented his intent to resign to the school board citing personal issues.

The school board accepted his resignation, effective immediately, and allowed Slaughter to use accrued personal time till Jan. 25. The school board placed Thomas O’Neal in the position of acting superintendent until a replacement can be found.

O’Neal said that even though the resignation is a big change, the focus remains the same. “We anticipate a smooth transition process as we move forward, and I am confident that the District will maintain our focus on academic excellence for our students when we return on Jan. 3, 2018,” O’Neal said.

“The Board anticipates that it will begin discussing the appropriate next steps to hire a new superintendent during the regularly scheduled meeting in January,” a press release for the board read.

Shelli Conway, school board president, said finding a suitable superintendent can be tiresome, but necessary. “Typically, we have a search,” she said. “There are companies that help with that or we can choose to do it on our own. Basically, the job is listed, and the board receives candidates. We then interview the ones we think are possible good fits, and then decide who to hire. It is a long, tedious process and the most serious and important thing the board can do. In the past, it has taken anywhere from three months to many more to make the decision.”

Slaughter served as Superintendent of the Anna Independent School District for over three years.

Conway said even though she hates to see Slaughter leave, she understands. “Mr. Slaughter has been instrumental in great things happening at Anna ISD,” Conway said. “While we wouldn’t have chosen it to happen, we do understand and respect his leaving for personal reasons. We have a fantastic staff at Anna ISD, from the administrative level and throughout. I am confident that Mr. O’Neal will serve the district well as Acting Superintendent. Our children will continue to receive nothing but the best education possible.”

Former school board member Tom Plunkett said he is thankful for the opportunity to have worked with Slaughter. “Pete is a smart leader by surrounding himself smart men and women to ensure the district kids had the best opportunity to learn during a big growth period,” Plunkett said. “Personally, I was thankful that regardless of his schedule, he always made time to listen to my questions about the district, which helped me make informed decisions.”

“The biggest compliment I could give to Pete would be him always showing so much care and attention to my seven-year old son, Bryce. I wish you and your family the best in your future endeavors, Pete.”