Growing concern over teacher resignations at J.H. Middle in Vermilion Parish

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Several recent teacher resignations at J.H. Williams Middle School in Abbeville are causing a growing concern between parents and teachers. 

Angelle Briggs, who has a child in the 8th grade at J.H. Williams Middle School, says the concern she’s had with the administration goes back to when her child entered 6th grade. 

She was concerned at one of the comments the principal made during orientation. 

Now she’s speaking out and wondering what exactly is going on within the administration. 

“My main concern is that the administrators learn how to introduce morale in their schools because as long as it’s being ran like it’s being ran, the teachers are not happy, and because the teachers are not happy, the kids are not happy,” says Briggs, a concerned parent. 

News Ten reports, “As far as now, there’s three teachers that have resigned. Are you concerned that there is going to be more teachers that will resign as well?” 

“Yes, it’s talks,” explains Briggs. “Anytime things start to trickle down from the administration to the teachers… and it’s going into the classrooms… something needs to be done… these teachers are fed up.” 

According to Acting Superintendent, Paul Hebert, three teachers recently resigned from the school.  

Two of the three have been hired by Lafayette Parish and two have been replaced within the school.  

News Ten reports, “Is there anything to your knowledge that you know of specifically that may be going on that may be allowing these teachers to resign, if you will?” 

“No, J.H. Williams has gone through a transformation over the past decade and it has become a school that’s functioning according to the state’s grading system at the “C” level. It’s definitely not where we would like it to be, we would like it to be an “A” school. We’d like all our schools to be “A” schools, but it is definitely not a failing school by any means,” adds Hebert. “They’re doing a lot of good things at that school, and we do support the administration in their efforts to maintain high standards.” 

According to Hebert, there is a policy in Vermilion Parish that prevents teachers from leaving one of their schools to go to another within the parish. 

Positions reopen at the end of the school year in preparation for the next school year if teachers want to transfer then. 

News Ten also reached out to the principal of J.H. Williams, but did not receive a comment by news time. 

The Vermilion Parish School Board is still looking for a third teacher replacement to fill.

Applications are open for that position until Thursday.

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