KT Lynch retires after 31 years of dedicated service to FCPS


Ted Thomas

Debbie Santmyer, right, a retired Chantilly administrator, joined many staff members in thanking KT Lynch, left, at the most recent faculty meeting. Lynch has been a Chantilly administrator for 18 years and retired Friday, Sept. 29.

Rachael Gunn, academics editor

When former principal Teresa Johnson began her new position as Assistant Superintendent for Special Services on July 1, the school was in need of someone to stand in temporarily while FCPS was determining who would take her place. Luckily, Assistant Principal KT Lynch took on the responsibility, delaying her own retirement plans for the sake of the school.

Lynch was asked to fill in as standing principal until the full transition was complete. This role entailed carrying out all the responsibilities of a full-time principal.

“Being a principal is a 24-hour job,” Lynch said. “There’s a lot of helping [students] decide what direction they want to go and guiding them and giving them confidence.”

In her tenure as standing principal and as a Chantilly assistant principal for almost 18 years, Lynch has had a significant impact on students and staff members, not only as a role model, but also as a friend.

“She has such a great relationship with staff and students,” Subschool 3 counselor Sarah Fronckel said. “I went to high school with her son; I’ve known her since. I will miss just being able to be honest with her.”

Lynch was publicly thanked by Region 5 Assistant Superintendent Frances Ivey in August, moments prior to the official announcement of the new principal.

“Chantilly has not skipped a beat when Mrs. Johnson left this summer,” Ivey said during the address given to community members. “We’re just appreciative [of her] dedication and leadership.”

Lynch retired on Oct. 1, and has been a fixture at sports games and school events during her time at Chantilly. Students recently honored her involvement by organizing a “red out” in reference to her signature red hair to celebrate her 31 years in education and 18 years at Chantilly.

“I started in 1975 at Robinson,” Lynch said. “Even though I had an art major [and a] social studies minor, I taught Earth Science.”

She took an 11-year break from education after getting married, but later decided to return.

“When I came back, I was in the [same] area; I went back to Robinson and ended up teaching science and social studies and a little bit of art,” Lynch said. “One of the assistant principals there was a good friend of mine [and] encouraged me to become an [assistant principal], so I did.”

After a career of hard work and meaningful contributions, Lynch plans to take advantage of her new free time during retirement to spend more time with her family.

“I get to see my grandkids more and am able to go to some of their [activities] that I wouldn’t [have been able to] before because I would be here [at] school,” Lynch said. “My sister is taking me to Ireland for 10 days; that’s my retirement present.”

In addition to this recreation, Lynch also plans to participate in volunteer work she has previously been unable to do because of work obligations

“Two of my sisters are on the Leesburg INOVA Hospital Ladies Board, so I’ll be doing a little bit of work with them,” Lynch said.

While many are happy for Lynch’s well-deserved retirement, they are sorry to see her leave.

“I’ll miss seeing her and having her around,” Fronckel said. “She’s one of a kind–the pillar of the Chantilly community.”