LIVINGSTON, NJ - At the first Livingston Board of Education meeting after Hurricane Sandy, the community was given some surprising news when Superintendent Brad Draeger announced his resignation at the end of the school year.

Draeger taught in Tampa, Fla. for four years, worked in Fairfax County, Va. for 26 and has been in Livingston for the past seven.

But his numerous years of experience have helped him succeed in Livingston. Since he was young, he has loved molding young minds and educating people, Draeger said.

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“The past seven years have been the most professionally rewarding of my life and I feel honored to have had the opportunity to lead and serve this wonderful school district,” Draeger said.

During his tenure, LPS improved student achievement, enhanced facilities, improved technology, and provided inclusionary programs for in-district special education students.

“Decisions to leave are never without reflection, but this is also an exciting opportunity for me to write another chapter in my life,” Draeger said. “Many years ago I was faced with a similar decision when I left a position I loved as an extremely successful professional musician and music educator to become a school administrator.  It turned out to be one of the best decisions I ever made, as was accepting the position as Superintendent of Livingston Public Schools.”

Board President Leslie Winograd said she was sad upon hearing the news of his retirement, but grateful for the seven years of working with him.

“I’m extremely disappointed that Brad is retiring,” Winograd said. “His service to the district has been spectacular and he will be sorely missed.”

Heritage Middle School Principal Pat Boland said Draeger has really helped the students and faculty succeed over the past seven years. He will certainly leave big shoes to fill and she and her colleagues are upset about his departure, she said.

“As principals, we value what he’s brought to the district and we find him one of the most respectful, successful and progressive superintendents and we loved working with him,” Boland said.

In other business, the board approved a facilities project that will be submitted to the state on Wednesday. It is:

  • Kindergarten building addition and interior renovations at Burnet Hill Elementary School
  • Media center  building addition and interior renovations at Collins Elementary School
  • Media center building addition and interior renovations at Harrison Elementary School
  • Kindergarten building addition and interior renovations at Hillside Elementary School
  • Media center building addition and interior renovations at Riker Hill Elementary School
  • Interior renovations at Livingston High School

The next scheduled meeting is Nov. 19 at 7:30 p.m.