06/15/2015 11:18 EDT | Updated 06/15/2016 05:59 EDT

Chairman of Vancouver's school board resigns, cites personal reasons

VANCOUVER - The chairman of Vancouver's school board has resigned about a week after an independent report found trustees could save millions of dollars by closing schools.

Christopher Richardson announced his resignation Monday night, saying he is giving up the post because of personal reasons but plans to remain on as a trustee.

He says the last six months have been challenging but exciting as the board took action to address chronic budgetary challenges and addressed seismic upgrades.

The board says in a news release that vice-chairwoman Janet Fraser will take over Richardson's job on an interim basis and a new chairperson will be elected June 24.

The board reported in March that it was heading towards a $15-million deficit, but Education Minister Peter Fassbender ordered a review of the school board's finances.

The Ernst and Young report released June 9 found $72 million worth of potential annual savings, one-time savings of $750 million and Fassbender says trustees can save millions of dollars by being more efficient and closing up to 19 schools. (CKNW, The Canadian Press)