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Mountain school superintendent resigns
McDowell County Schools Superintendent Dr. Gerri Martin handed in her resignation at a school board meeting Friday afternoon.
Martin has taken a job in Raleigh as superintendent of Orange County schools.
Board Chairman Terry English said that he had heard rumors Martin was planning to resign but Friday was the first time it was formally announced to him.
"As far as an organized push to unload ... our current superintendent," said English, "it may have seemed that way to some in the community but the board felt confident in her ability."
A petition with more than 1,100 signatures asking that Martin be removed as superintendent was presented to the board by citizens in February, but English says the board supports her and she decided to leave upon being offered the Orange County position.
"I'm confident in who I am and what I stand for, you know I could have lived here for the rest of my life and been happy," said Martin, saying pressure from the community was not a factor in her decision.
Martin says she was not searching for a job when she received a phone call while on vacation in July, making her aware of the opening in Raleigh.
When she returned from vacation she submitted an application and after getting the offer she says she decided it was too good an opportunity for her and her family to pass up on.
Martin has been in the superintendend position in Marion for one year, arriving from an assistant superintendent position in Granville County.
Her last day in McDowell County will be September 30. She will start in Raleigh on October 1.