Purser to Retire in December
Moore County Schools Superintendent Susan Purser has announced that she will retire in December after 41 years as an educator.
“It’s with a lot of sadness in one regard because I love the work we’re doing,” she said in a telephone interview Thursday afternoon. “But yet, it’s time. It’s the right time.”
As students returned to school Thursday, Purser began sharing the news of her retirement with her staff and administrators.
Purser said she began considering her options for retirement last January, and she emphasized that her decision is based on her desire to spend more time with her family and to be a more active member of the community.
“It’s not because I’m not happy,” she said. “It’s just that I’ve got 41 years of service, and I have five grandchildren now.”
Purser said she did not make the announcement earlier in the year because she did not want to cause distractions during the system’s budget process or end-of-grade testing.
She added that she wanted to make the announcement once school was in session so that the change would not be as disruptive as it would be over a summer break.
“I was looking for what would be the best time to share with our staff and the community,” she said. “Waiting until school started was the best time to do that.”
The Moore County Board of Education is already taking steps toward having a replacement ready for January. The board is scheduled to hear a presentation from the N.C. School Boards Association during its September meeting to consider hiring the organization to conduct a superintendent search.
Purser has been superintendent of the school system since 2004. She began her career in education in 1971 teaching math in Jackson, Miss.
Before coming to Moore County, Purser was superintendent of Pontotoc City Schools in Pontotoc, Miss.
With retirement ahead of her, Purser said she looks forward to dedicating more time to organizations and activities she has become a part of over the years.
“I’m not going anywhere,” she said. “I will be a member of the community, and I’ll always be a supporter for the school system because it’s an incredible place. I look forward to being more active in contributing to our community on a volunteer basis in a broader sense.”
Purser added that she feels privileged to be ending her career in Moore County.
“The folks in Moore County are absolutely the best,” she said. “I’ve been a number of places, worked with a number of people, and what I’ve found here is that I’m truly blessed to have been a part of Moore County at the end of my career. Few have had the privilege I’ve had.”
Contact Hannah Sharpe at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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