Hays USD 489 Superintendent John Thissen’s resignation was accepted in the personnel transactions approved at the Oct. 23 school board meeting. He wasn’t there to offer an explanation, however, as he’d been called away that day for a family emergency.

It is his family obligations, that are in fact calling him away from Hays, he said after Thursday’s special school board meeting.

His father had emergency surgery Oct. 23, and Thissen spent several days with him. He also now has three grandchildren that he didn’t have when he took the job leading Hays public schools two and half years ago.

“They’re all three, four hours away from here. It just makes sense that I go back to where my family is,” he said.

Thissen said he intends to find another job closer to family, but is eligible to retire should his father’s health needs require more of his time.

He wanted to make sure USD 489 had plenty of time to find his successor, he said. His resignation will take effect June 30, the end of the fiscal year.

“Most time people get another job or they retire, sometimes that can be as late as April, then the district they're retiring from doesn't have much time to find someone. In my mind, I needed to leave no matter what. So it's just better off to go ahead and give it early so they have the ability to find someone, maybe by Februrary,” he said.