After serving as headmaster for 12 years, Stephen Repsher will retire in June 2016.
Repsher’s retirement was announced Tuesday, May 12, in a school-wide email.
However, Repsher first announced his plans to the faculty and staff at a special meeting in the Winters Library. An hour later he announced it to the Board of Trustees at the regularly scheduled meeting.
“No one had heard anything between those two meetings,” Repsher said.
“I definitely thought that one of them would have talked!”
Since Repsher didn’t have a plan for how many years he would be the headmaster when he started at Country Day, making the decision to retire was an “evolution,” he said.
“Because I’m 66, I knew that I was getting close because I had to file for Social Security registration, and do all those kinds of things,” he said.
But Repsher said he knew from the beginning that being Country Day’s headmaster was going to be a long-term job.
“As John Lennon would say, ‘Life is what happens when you’re making other plans.’ I have often lived by that motto,” Repsher said.
“I don’t try to overplan, but I knew that I was going to be here for a fairly long time because I felt so connected to the school and I really enjoyed the folks and my job.”
Repsher said he knew that it was a good time to retire because the school is in good shape.
“The enrollment is expanding, the curriculum has been enhanced in a lot of various ways in kindergarten through twelfth grade, our faculty is outstanding and our facilities have been upgraded,” Repsher said.
With all of these positive aspects, Repsher said that he is comfortable handing over the reins.
“I wouldn’t feel right if I just handed over major problems,” he said.
“I always felt like it was my job to try to help the school move to the next level. I just wouldn’t do it if I didn’t think we were in a good position.”
For instance, when Sacramento’s economy was crashing in 2009, Repsher said that he never considered leaving at that point.
Repsher is now making plans for retirement.
“Initially, I want to do things like travel and catch up on my reading, which are hard to do when you are at a job day in and day out,” he said.
He is also considering returning to the classroom to teach Spanish. However, he said he probably won’t teach at Country Day.
“I wouldn’t teach here not because I wouldn’t love to, but because past headmasters usually get in the way,” Repsher said.
“When there is a new head, they won’t want somebody here who has been doing their position and is probably second-guessing their work. I’d like to let them put his or her mark on the school themselves.”