The principal of the public high school at the centre of the ‘no zero’ controversy has announced he is leaving the school for another position within the school district.

In a letter posted on the Ross Sheppard High School website, Ron Bradley announced he was stepping down from his position at the school, effective immediately.

It’s a move that caught many off-guards, including Sue Huff, the co-chair for the school council – who had been planning to meet with Bradley on the future of the no-zero policy.

“I was a bit stunned actually,” Huff said.

“His notice to us was that he applied for this position, and that it was something he always wanted to do, so I am going to take him at face value.”

Bradley said he was leaving to take up a new position, Supervisor of Leadership Development at Edmonton Public Schools.

His new position starts on Tuesday, October 9.

Bradley made headlines earlier this year, after high school teacher Lynden Dorval was suspended for not following the high school’s policy of not giving students zeroes.

Dorval was not surprised by the move.

“Any sane person knows this is not a promotion, this is a way to repair things at the school,” Dorval said Friday.

“They could not fire or demote the principal because then that would have implications on my case,” Dorval continued. “Of course, an admission that what was going on was wrong, in the very beginning they were stuck.”

Meanwhile, Edmonton Public Schools said Bradley was among several candidates vying for the position – and maintain the job was not created for him.

Bradley’s new position means he will now make training plans for principals – equipping school leaders with the proper skills.

“There was an open, competitive process and Mr. Bradley has several years of experience in the area of leadership, and he can offer quite a bit to all the upcoming next leaders for Edmonton Public Schools,” Cheryl Oxford with Edmonton Public Schools said.

Mike Suderman will take over the role of principal at Ross Sheppard – Suderman had most recently been principal of Vernon Barford Junior High.

Now, the ultimate fate of the ‘no-zero’ policy will be in his hands.

“I think it has been a very confrontational, adversarial debate and I think maybe we need to move from debate, and move towards dialogue,” Huff said.

Ross Sheppard’s school council will meet to discuss the future of that controversial policy on Wednesday – when many of the council members will meet Suderman.

With files from Sonia Sunger