FRONT ROYAL -- The Warren County School Board announced Wednesday that Warren County Public Schools Superintendent Greg Drescher has been placed on paid administrative leave.

School Board Chairwoman Catherine Bower said during the regular board meeting that Drescher’s leave will last until his retirement in January. Drescher was not present during the meeting.

Bower said that Assistant Superintendant Melody Sheppard will be taking over Drescher’s duties until January. The School Board is planning to start looking for a replacement superintendent in January. Drescher announced at the beginning of September that he would be retiring from Warren County Public Schools in January to take care of his ill wife.

“We all wish Greg the best,” Sheppard said. “I’m honored that the School Board has entrusted me with this duty.”

The announcement of Drescher’s leave comes after he turned himself in to state police on Sept. 24 after being indicted on two misdemeanor counts of misfeasance and one count of nonfeasance Sept. 20 by a special grand jury investigating potential criminal activity involving the Front Royal-Warren County Economic Development Authority. Drescher, who previously served as the EDA board chairman, was among 14 people indicted on the same charges.

Bower highlighted several of Drescher’s achievements, including funding Chromebooks for all students and the pay scale increase for teachers with between 11 and 25 years of experience.

“His passion in education was evident in any of the programs he started,” she said.

Board member Arnold Williams thanked Drescher for the work he did for the school district.

“I want to wish Mr. Drescher a good life and thank him for his service that he did for Warren County Public Schools,” Williams said. “I think he gave us his all every day.”

Board member James Wells echoed Williams’ thoughts.

“I said this under oath, so I feel comfortable about saying it now, there’s nothing that makes me feel Greg Drescher didn’t give anything less than 100% of his time and attention to leading this school system,” he said.

The School Board also met during a 30-minute closed meeting before the regular meeting on Wednesday to discuss an unspecified employee personnel issue. Bower, Williams, Wells and board members Donna McEathron and Douglas Rosen were in attendance for the meeting.

There was no comment after the closed meeting about what the board had discussed.

Contact Donald Lambert at dlambert@nvdaily.com