Azalea Middle School Principal Sue Musser announced this week that she will retire April 13, ending her 16-year involvement with the Brookings-Harbor School District.

Assistant Principal Mike Dillenburg has been tapped by Superintendent Paul Prevenas to replace Musser as interim Principal for the remainder of the school year.

Its sad news for us, Prevenas said Tuesday about Mussers resignation. She will certainly be missed.

Musser said Azalea Middle School has become a second home to me.

Many of the friends I have made in this community are staff members at Azalea, she said. I am proud of the school we have created by working together, and I know I will miss being involved with the staff and students.

Musser said spending time with her family spurred her decision, in part, to retire.

I dont really have any big plans for my future, she said. Mostly I look forward to having more time to spend with my family and friends. I want to travel, read, learn how to cook again, work in the garden and walk on the beach with my dog.

Musser said she is leaving before the end of the school year so she can join her accountant husband on a vacation he normally takes after tax season.

Musser spent the last 16 years working at the school district as a first grade teacher, a fifth grade teacher and curriculum director. She was selected to be principal at Azalea Middle School in May, 1997.

As for her temporary replacement, Musser said, I feel very confident about the decision to have Mike Dillenburg serve for the balance of the school year.

Prevenas selected Dillenburg to become interim principal. The school board will likely ratify that decision at their next regular meeting, Prevenas said.

The next step, he said, is to find someone to fill the vacated assistant principal position.

I hope to fill both positions to get us through the rest of the quarter.

The school board will begin the process of finding a permanent principal in upcoming months, Prevenas said. Recruitment for Mussers replacement will not begin until after schools out, he said.

Were not likely to find top quality candidates mid-year, Prevenas said. And Im not in favor of pulling someone from another school district mid-year.