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Schools Chief Quits After 11 Years

June 04, 1989|LEE HARRIS | Times Staff Writer

NORWALK — After 11 years as superintendent of the 18,000-student Norwalk-La Mirada Unified School District, Bruce C. Newlin has resigned to become superintendent of a much smaller school district in Central California.

Newlin, 54, will become superintendent July 1 of the Ceres unified system of about 7,000 students, he said.

In a May 22 letter addressed to district personnel here, Newlin said he was leaving because he thought it was time for a change. He said he wanted to ". . . live where raising a family is less hazardous than in the large metropolitan Los Angeles area."

He also said: "It is no big secret that the board and I have had some degree of difficulty." Newlin said he would not comment further.

Newlin sent his letter of resignation to the seven-member Board of Education. The board is expected to vote on the resignation, which becomes effective June 30, at its regular meeting Monday.

Board member Sal Ambriz said Newlin's resignation did not come as a surprise because the superintendent had notified board members several weeks ago that he was a candidate for the Ceres job.

Ambriz said he believed the board would unanimously accept Newlin's resignation.

"We are supportive of his leaving. We are wishing him well," Ambriz said.

Board President Bruce Butler said he also wished the superintendent well. But Butler added: "The average tenure in the state for superintendents is three to five years. They do not come in and last forever. This change will be best for everyone."

Although board members never publicly discussed buying out Newlin's contract, it was reported elsewhere that buy-out negotiations were being conducted behind closed doors.

Newlin's two-year contract would have expired in Oct. 31, 1990.

"I think it is a matter of public record . . . that the board offered to buy out his contract," Ambriz said. Ambriz said he would not comment further.

Newlin said he would not disclose any matters discussed in closed sessions.

Newlin's wife, Karin Newlin, said she will quit her job as principal at Niemes Elementary School in the ABC Unified School District after the couple's La Mirada home is sold. They have two girls, Amanda, 7, and Heather, 10.

Ceres, which is near Modesto, has a growing population of about 13,000. Newlin's salary, now $84,000, will be $79,000 at Ceres. Newlin is replacing Supt. Robert Adkison, who is retiring from Ceres after 23 years.

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