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Community Reacts to Michael Gallina's Retirement

Gallina, North Canton City School District superintendent, announced Monday he would retire from education for an opportunity with AultCare Health Services

When sophomore Mollie Wright first heard her school superintendent planned to leave the district, she was shocked.

"Oh my gosh. I'm going to cry," Wright said outside Memorial Stadium Monday afternoon.

She and a couple friends had just learned of for a positon as director of outreach and organizational development with the AultCare Health Network. Gallina made the announcement to his staff through an email Monday morning.

Friend also chimed in, saying Gallina always took the time to get to know North Canton students.

"You couldn't ask for a better guy," said Morris, also a sophomore. "The way he acts around us is really great. He doesn't just make you feel like a student in the school; he has a one-on-one relationship with you."

The girls talked about Gallina's efforts to make it to every important sports game, attend every seminar and make a lasting impression on students.

"In most school districts, people don't even know who their school superintendent is," senior Tess Johnson said. "But he made an effort to know everyone."

Kathy Yaros,  family and community director, said Gallina has "gathered so much momentum in this community" as he's participated in everything from the YMCA Board to with her.

"He's such an energizer for the community. It's a real loss to our community," Yaros said. "We certainly wish him well."

Gallina's decision to leave didn't come without a heavy heart. He wrote in his staff email Monday: 

As I will share in the upcoming days, it has been a tremendous honor to have humbly served WITH all of you in our wonderful school district.  NC is a VERY special place and it is because of all of you, our students, our families, our administrative team and board, and our community in general that has allowed us to be considered one of the best districts in the area, state, and nation!  As I reflect upon all of this, I become very emotional, given my relationship with all of you. I have been blessed beyond measure because of my friendships and relationships with all of you!

Gallina's goodbye comes at a turbulent time for North Canton City Schools. The district must transition into all-day, every-day kindergarten for the 2012-2013 school year, and Gallina has been instrumental in setting the district up for that transition.

The switch, referred to as the , means students in K-2 attend  and , and students in grades 3-5 attend  Intermediate School  Intermediate School. All four schools now are elementaries.

The North Canton School Board plans to launch a search for a new superintendent, North Neighbor News reported Monday. The district could look to the Stark County Educational Service Center to lead a search for free. Or it could pay the Ohio School Board Association, the newspaper reported. The Board must also decide if an interim superintendent should be appointed.

Gallina did not return a phone call from North Canton Patch inquiring about his new position Monday.

A special board of education meeting is scheduled for 7:30 a.m. Thursday in the District Office. The sole agenda item is Gallina's resignation for the purpose of retirement.

jim April 05, 2012 at 01:33 AM
Ann Marie has good common since and is far from ignorant. She makes several good points like the one about all day kindergarten is nothing more than a free babysitting service at the taxpayer’s expense, To keep up with the rest of the world our school systems need to add class hours to the 16 year olds not 5 year olds. She is right on about the tax situation in NC. Gallina’s dream was a blank check for the education system. I agree there is a correlation between the high property taxes and foreclosures in town. A couple grand for property taxes in NC for a modest sized home is the difference between a lot of people owning or renting.
Jeff W April 05, 2012 at 02:48 AM
Jim, One last time. Please do me a big favor and show where you have posted at least ONE positive comment. I know they seem positive to you, but not really to anyone else. Oh....and interesting that recently "Anna Marie" and you seem to agree on the same things. Coincidence........hmmmm.....same household.....hmmm....would be an interesting investigation.
Jeff W April 05, 2012 at 02:54 AM
Hey truth.......evidently you don't know Mike very well. Because your comment is all bullcrap. If you think he left because of any elected school board official, you really don't know the man. Having known him for over 18 years (before he ever came to NC), he would never succumb to any kind of "board pressure" (especially when it is allegedly only from two board members.) You are making a political statement against certain board members, and that has no bearing, or place, in this forum.
Ann Marie April 05, 2012 at 03:10 AM
Jeff W Just because someone agrees with someone else does not mean they live in the same household. Does that mean everyone posting on here that agrees that the all day kindergarten is a good idea all live in the same house? What about all the people that keep on voting yes for levies to up our property taxes? All live in the same house too? Let me quote someone from another paper--"The people who benefit the most from public education today are the adults employed by the school system." So the school system makes nothing but fools out of all of the taxpayers. People need to wake up.
jim April 06, 2012 at 12:02 PM
Jeff W Do me a big favor and back off. Look at the election results of these increase NC tax levys that have passed and there are hundreds to over a thousand people voting against them each time they appear on the ballot.Gallina was/is a strong advocate of high taxes, I strongly voiced my opinion, and predictably people like you attack people using free speach until my comment was taken down. I have no idea who Anna Marie is but I agree with her and believe many others agree with her. Your earlier comment about my household and your last one about wanting to investigate Anna and I are creepy.

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