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Class dismissed

Her goal was to build off the momentum and experience of those leaving.

"[I wanted to] preserve what was so powerful in their environment," she said.

The journey was not without its difficulties, as Ehrenberg said student who were lost due to illness and other circumstances during her tenure required her to be strong for the community despite the sadness.

"We have to act strong for the rest of the world," she said. "Being strong for others during times of crisis, it really takes its toll."

To add to the hardship, she lost her own son, Eric, two years ago to cancer.

"Eric's death probably sped up my leaving the district," she said.

Ehrenberg said she leaves North Colonie knowing she gave the job her all and has few regrets.

"You have to feel that more often than not, your decisions are good ones," she said.

She said making "hundreds" of judgment calls each day requires confidence that she had the best information possible. She said she always tried her best to put students first.

"I like to keep the voices of the students in my head," she said.

Ehrenberg took specific pleasure in letting students know when they were successful and often penned letters for small victories for students and tried to let them know their work was appreciated.

She has worked closely with her successor, D. Joseph Corr, and has been giving him extra advice since he was selected to take over for her earlier this year.

She said it's always easier when more resources are available and the next school year is sure to be a challenge with the state deficit looming, but she said she is confident in Corr. She said listening to the community, thinking and communicating will be keys to success.

"I know his heart and head will be in the right place," she said. "I think he will be a very successful superintendent."

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