OZARK, Mo. — The superintendent of Ozark schools is retiring despite a three-year contract that would keep him in the position until the 2025-2026 school year.

Chris Bauman’s last day of work is on June 30. The Ozark Board of Educators accepted his retirement at an April 13 board meeting.

Bauman’s wife is battling terminal cancer, according to a press release from Ozark Schools.

“The time has come for me to enjoy my time with my wife, my children, and my grandson,” Bauman said in a statement.

Bauman has served as the Ozark superintendent for the past five years. He began working for Ozark schools in 1999. In his decades of service in Ozark, he acted as a mathematics teacher, volleyball coach, wrestling coach, Ozark Junior High assistant principal and Ozark Upper Elementary principal.

He is being replaced by Dr. Lori Wilson, who currently serves as assistant superintendent. Wilson will be an interim superintendent when she takes over for the 2023-24 school year.