To the editor:

St. Francis Area Schools Superintendent Troy Ferguson leaves for a new opportunity July 1, 2019. I wanted to thank him for his years of service to the St. Francis Area School District. As a long-time resident of the St. Francis area, Superintendent Ferguson has many lifelong friendships. This has enabled him to bring a unique perspective to the local superintendent position that has allowed him to thrive. Many people have shared they will miss Troy for this perspective, his compassion and the many other high qualities he has embodied while superintendent.

Oh sure yes, there have been tough times. Unions, contracts and lack of up-to-date professional development have created a less rigorous learning community. Of course, Troy and I also had many hard conversations and disagreements. Yet we could move on to the next issue or crisis with the firm understanding ultimately we wanted to equip our students with the knowledge and skills to succeed in an ever changing, dynamic world. Troy always has done his very best to serve our students, staff and community.

It was with great pleasure last fall I was able to see him named the 2018 Outstanding Administrator of the Year by the Minnesota Indian Education Association. Troy understands equity and will continue to do fantastic as he moves diverse programming forward in his next superintendent position.

Thank you, Troy! While you have been a great colleague, you have become a better friend. Best wishes as you move on to a new opportunity. You were a stabilizing good for our district while you were here.

Marsha Van Denburgh

Oak Grove

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