San Diego Unified School Superintendent Resigns

Superintendent Bill Kowba will step down effective June 30, 2013

By R. Stickney
|  Wednesday, Feb 27, 2013  |  Updated 9:00 PM PDT
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 San Diego Unified School District Superintendent Bill Kowba told NBC 7 that he is resigning after three years of making difficult cuts to the school budgets.

San Diego Unified School District Superintendent Bill Kowba told NBC 7 that he is resigning after three years of making difficult cuts to the school budgets.

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The financial guy who took the job as the top educator for the San Diego Unified School District announced his resignation Tuesday with a formal letter that expressed "great mixed emotions" and described great successes despite "draconian" budget cuts.

Superintendent Bill Kowba will step down effective June 30, 2013 - the day that signals the end of his three -year contract.

Read Kowba's letter of resignation

Kowba, who was selected while serving as interim superintendent for the district in 2010, was a non-traditional choice since his background was in finance, not education.

Photos and Videos

Bill Kowba Announces Resignation

San Diego School Superintendent Bill Kowba reads his letter of resignation in this video provided to NBC 7 San Diego by the SDUSD.

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More Photos and Videos

In his first year, he faced what was considered the worst budget shortfall in the district's 150 year existence.

As the state cut funding for education, the district considered closing up to 14 schools at one point.

Then, there was the threat of insolvency and the chance the state may need to step in and manage the finances for the state's second-largest school district.

"Year after year, we have had to make the most difficult decisions impacting all stakeholder groups," Kowba writes in his resignation letter. "Great collaboration and sacrifice by all have enabled us to accommodate the budget deficits."

Those were the challenges Kowba faced. As he handed in his resignation, he also highlighted some of the district's achievements during his tenure.

Among them he included "very positive trends in attendance, standardized testing outcomes, graduation rates, and drop-out figures" along with the passage of Prop S and Prop Z.

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