La Mesa-Spring Valley superintendent to retire

La Mesa-Spring Valley Superintendent Brian Marshall has announced he is retiring at the end of this year.

Marshall, 54, has been leading the 12,500-student district and its $125 million budget since 2003. He had previously been an assistant superintendent with the district for just over a year after four years as principal at the now defunct La Mesa Middle School.

Marshall has a wife, Rosemarie, and two children — a daughter in college and a son at Patrick Henry High. He said he has been planning his retirement for more than a year.

“I became superintendent when I was 39,” Marshall said. “My daughter was starting kindergarten, my son was 1. I had a conversation at that time with my wife that it was going to be a time-consuming job. And part of that conversation was about how I would be able to retire early. I did the calculations then and I made a promise to (Rosemarie) that as soon as I could retire, I would.”

Marshall, whose last day will be around Dec. 21, he said, will leave with a salary of $245,000, without benefits. His CalPERS retirement has not yet been calculated.

Marshall started at the La Mesa-Spring Valley School District in 1998, as principal of La Mesa Middle School (now the La Mesa Arts Academy), then spent months as assistant superintendent of instruction.

Marshall grew up in San Carlos and lives in Del Cerro. He graduated from UCSD and earned his teaching credential at USD and a master’s degree in Educational Administration at SDSU.

“We’ve had great successes and had challenging times,” Marshall said of his tenure. “The most challenging was getting through fiscal crises, including the great recession from about 2008 to 2010. We had to lay off teachers, reduce salaries. We all felt the pain.”

School board President David Chong said the district will miss Marshall’s leadership and credited him for overseeing the passage of Proposition M, a $44 million bond measure that allowed the district to modernize, remodel and build facilities.

“Mr. Marshall was also instrumental in the development of three unique academies, serving grades four through eight,” Chong said, citing La Mesa Arts Academy, STEAM at La Presa, Spring Valley Academy, as well as Kempton Literacy Academy, a dual immersion K-3 campus.

“He has always fostered an open relationship with the community, establishing the 20/20 Vision Committee to allow our families and neighbors input into important and long-term district goals and strategies.”

Marshall said it was too soon to think about what he will do after he retires, but said he hopes that giving the school board several months to start the search for his replacement will serve the trustees well.

“I would hope LMSV continues to offer exceptional education opportunities for children (after I leave) and continues to develop innovative programs that meet the needs of our students,” Marshall said. “I hope they continue to be a beacon in the public eye.”

karen.pearlman@sduniontribune.com

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