DETROIT -

The emergency manager of the Detroit Public Schools is delaying his retirement.

Roy Roberts had announced in early May that he would step down from his role when his contract was up -- May 16.

However, on Wednesday, the district announced that the 74-year-old's contract had been extended for up to six months.

READ: Letter from Roy Robert on contract extension

"Many of you are probably asking yourselves why I requested this contract extension. My answer is really quite simple, and is the reason I took this job in the first place -- it’s about educating the children of Detroit," Roberts said in a letter.

Statement from Gov. Rick Snyder:

"Roy's devotion to the students, families and teachers of Detroit Public Schools has been apparent since his appointment in 2011. His willingness to delay his personal plans and continue providing critical vision and leadership to the district for the next six months underscores that commitment.

The school district is making strides and that’s due to the partnership between Roy and the community. Working as a team, they have delivered consecutive balanced budgets for the district and significantly reduced its legacy deficit, all of which builds a stronger educational foundation for DPS students. While much work remains, there’s no doubt that the district is moving in the right direction.

As the school year winds down, it is important that students stay on a steady course. Roy’s continued guidance will guarantee that essential continuity. I appreciate all that he has done for Detroit’s school children and welcome his decision to remain at the district’s helm for the next few weeks and months to ensure a smooth, effective leadership transition."