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Leader of Wake education group resigns

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By Ret Boney

Bob Saffold, president of the Wake Education Partnership, tendered his resignation Jan. 22, effective the following day.

Virginia Parker, chair-elect of the Partnership board and former Wake County PTA president, will step in temporarily to provide “leadership and guidance on a short-term basis” until an interim can be appointed, says John McKinney, current board chair.

Saffold’s resignation followed several months of work to develop a new strategic direction for the Partnership, an effort McKinney says was led by board member Michael Olander.

“He [Saffold] decided he’d gotten the Partnership in a good place and decided to pursue other opportunities,” says McKinney.

Saffold did not return phone calls.

Saffold joined the Partnership, a Raleigh-based public school advocacy group, in July 2004 with a background as a teacher, administrator and education fund program director.

“I see Bob as a change agent,” says McKinney.  “He’s brought the organization to a healthier place.”

The Partnership’s new direction will focus on retaining effective teachers, developing leadership and ensuring healthy schools, says McKinney.

The group also is developing an advocacy and communication plan to build on momentum created by the passage of the school bond referendum last fall, he says

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