WEST LAFAYETTE -- The Ridgewood school district will be soon be saying good-bye to one administrative staff member and welcoming another.

William Caudill, Superintendent at Ridgewood schools, will be officially retiring on Jan. 9 and the newly-hired superintendent Rick Raach will take over the position on Jan. 12.

Raach, a 1973 graduate of Newcomerstown High School, has a bachelor's degree in education from Ashland University and a master's degree in school administration. Raach has actually been with the Ridgewood school district for 27 years. He has five years experience as the middle school principal and five years as the RHS Principal. He also has two years experience working with the federal programs.

Raach said he is looking forward to his new role, while Caudill said he was looking forward to his retirement, adding "the second time."

Caudill had previously started retirement several years ago, just prior to accepting the superintendent position (July 5, 2005).

Caudill, a graduate of Marshall University, began teaching in 1958 at the former Roscoe High School in Coshocton County. He started teaching in the Ridgewood schools during the 1960s and held the position of Ridgewood High School Principal from 1969-1970.

Caudill wished to thank the school board, administrative staff, teachers, students and parents for "a real good 3 1/2 years."

Other business conducted by the Ridgewood School Board at their Dec. 17 meeting included the following items:

* Commendations were given to Ridgewood third graders for their participation in the Newcomerstown Elks' Hoop Shoot. Those students included Palmer Erb and Amber Mourer (both first place winners), Hunter Mizer (second place) and Karrie Bluck (third place). Erb and Mourer will advance to the next round at Dover.

* Approval for a five-year lease/contract with COPECO for new copy machines for the school offices.

* Approval to hire Terri Scheck, part-time aide at Hopewell (on an as needed basis, up to five hours per day Monday through Thursday), effective Dec. 2 through the remainder of the 2008-2009 school year.

* Approval for the following substitutes: Rachelle Smith, cook and secretary, and Heather Wilson, aide.

* The 2009-2010 school calendar was approved.

* OSBA membership was approved (January through December 2009) at a total cost of $3,649.

* Three contracts with NEOLA Inc. was approved at a cost of $19,200.

The board later entered a brief executive session to evaluate the superintendent and treasurer. No action taken.

The annual organizational meeting will be Jan. 7 at 6:15 p.m. and the next regular board session is scheduled for Jan. 28 at 7:30 p.m. Both meetings will take place in the Ridgewood High School Library.