Mystery surrounds Red Lion school superintendent's sudden leave of absence
Red Lion Area school officials confirmed that Superintendent Scott Deisley is on leave — a few months before his planned retirement — after previously refusing to comment on the matter.
Deisley will be replaced by Eric Wilson, the district's chief instructional officer, according to an Oct. 14 letter from the school board to Red Lion parents and families.
The district began its search for Deisley’s successor following his retirement announcement this April. Deisley had planned to retire effective Jan. 11, 2023, after serving the district for 11 years.
“We have a strong team of administrators, faculty, and staff, and I have full confidence in the Red Lion Area Board of School Directors," Deisley said, in a written statement explaining he will remain committed to the district.
The district posted on its website that the search was underway in July. The more recent letter noted that additional information on the superintendent search and the timeline will be forthcoming. It does not explain why he went on leave.
Rumors of Deisley's departure have circulated in recent weeks, but The York Dispatch has not been able to confirm any of the reports. School officials, board members and others have not responded to numerous requests for comment. The Dispatch requested documents concerning Deisley's departure using the state Right-to-Know Law.
The York Dispatch reached Deisley at his home on Oct. 13.
During a brief interview, he said that "there will always be rumors" and declined further comment.
His name is still on the district's website as superintendent.
In addition to being superintendent, Deisley also serves as a superintendent of the York County School of Technology and was named in August 2021 as the next chair of the United Way of York County's board of directors.
He was "named York County's Most Influential People for 2022 in Education by the York Daily Record," according to a Sept. 19 post to the district's Facebook page.
"Congratulations and thank you, Dr. Deisley, for the steady goodwill you bring to our District and for leading by positive example," the district wrote. "We appreciate you!"
The district also announced on Sept. 23 that Deisley had won the 2022 Junior Achievement Bronze Leadership Award.
The next school board meeting is 7 p.m. Oct. 20 at Red Lion Area Education Center, 696 Delta Road, Red Lion. The meeting room can only allow 30 people to be present in person. All others can join through Zoom. More information about the call is listed on the board's webpage.
— Reach Meredith Willse at firstname.lastname@example.org or on Twitter at @MeredithWillse.