Joy principal to retire

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John E. Joy Elementary School Principal Andria Lacey has announced her upcoming retirement Aug. 31 after 16 years at the 8194 Bielby Road facility, in a letter to school families.

Lacey said in the letter Monday “while I am excited about the new opportunities and challenges that I will face, I am also becoming nostalgic about the 16 years that I have served as your principal.”

Lacey in February 2018 had submitted a notice of retirement to the school district that indicated an effective date of Aug. 1, 2021. District Superintendent Peter C. Blake said Tuesday that Lacey had recently contacted him about seeking to amend her retirement date, and “I congratulate her on her pending retirement.”

The principal’s position at Joy school will be filled, said Blake, adding “there is no decision on a new principal at this time because we have yet to post the position, which will be followed by several rounds of interviews.” He noted “If all goes perfectly, we should be able to have a new principal in late August” for the school which includes grades K-6.

Lacey’s letter said “it has truly been an honor and a ‘Joy,’...to be a member of the John Joy learning community in service to you and your children as your elementary school principal.” She noted she has spent most of her life in Rome, adding that when she was offered the position in 2004 “I felt like I had won the lottery....I would be able to return to live and work in my adopted hometown.”

Since her first day of meeting staff, families and children at Joy, “I have felt the caring embrace of a school community of wonderful and loving people,” Lacey’s letter added. “I have loved the privilege of caring for the children who attended John Joy Elementary and over the ensuing years watching them graduate from high school to go on to do wonderful things with their lives....Thank you for all of the memories and the support afforded to me over the years.”

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