Ashe County Schools Superintendent Phyllis Yates will retire at the end of this school year.

The Ashe Post and Times reports Yates made the announcement at the January 13 meeting of the Ashe Board of Education.

According to the report, Yates described her coworkers as her other family and she couldn’t have been more blessed than she has been in her career.

Yates said she feels it is time for her to retire after her 44 years of service to spend time with her family and to plan a trip out West.

Yates retirement will be effective July 1.