NEW ULM - Synova Nelson, principal of the River Bend Area Learning Center, has resigned.
The reasons are "very personal and private," said River Bend Education District's general administrator, Director of Special Education Linda Wintz.
The resignation was accepted by the River Bend Board of Directors Tuesday night; and Nelson's last day is Friday.
The Board of Directors also authorized a vacancy posting for the position.
The River Bend Administrative Council, an advisory body made up of the superintendents of River Bend member districts, will help decide how to specifically proceed and what the posting would look like, said Wintz. The process will take place over the next couple of weeks.
Nelson's resignation had not been immediately expected, administrators note.
It coincides, timewise, with restructuring at the River Bend Area Learning Center, intended to strengthen its budget.
Upcoming changes include eliminating all family and consumer science, and two computer science, electives, and reductions in paraprofessional and/or clerical contracts.
Prior to the Tuesday action, Nelson had volunteered to accept a pay freeze.
The changes at the ALC result from the fact it has operated at some 16 students under capacity this year.
Some see it as the outcome of a trend for member districts to keep more students on local campuses, instead of referring them to River Bend.
The River Bend ALC accepts students at risk of not graduating, who meet a state criteria list.
In education, funding "follows" the student, and the enrollment loss has affected the ALC budget.
The River Bend Area Learning Center is just one component of the River Bend District. Other programs include the Team and Imprints Programs, as well as other services provided to individual districts through River Bend.
While the ALC is contracting, the Imprints Program, for children with specific special needs (who need extra structure) is expanding, also in response to enrollment shifts.
River Bend is a cooperative of school districts and charter schools (Butterfield, GFW, Lafayette Charter, Madelia, New Country School, New Ulm, St. James, Sibley East, Sleepy Eye and the Green Isle Community School).