Only 4 Vermilion Parish School Board members give Puyau an evaluation


ABBEVILLE, La. (KLFY) – At Monday evening’s special Vermilion Parish School Board meeting, Superintendent Jerome Puyau was supposed to receive his yearly evaluation from all 8 Board Members.

He received a 3.7 out of 4 ranking, which is ‘highly effective.’

However, only 4 board members along with Puyau himself, filled out the evaluation document.

Puyau says it’s the second highest evaluation he’s ever received, and comes on the same year the District was ranked fourth in the entire state of Louisiana.

But some Board Members believe that because of ongoing litigation, he isn’t warranted to get an evaluation.

“Leadership does matter, so I’m looking forward to hearing what feedback I hear from the Board Members,” said Puyau before Monday’s Special Meeting.

He was set to receive his evaluation from the Board, but only 4 filled out the document.

“So why would we evaluate a Superintendent that don’t have a contract,” said Kibbie Pillette, District 4 School Board Member.

Pillette believes the Attorney General’s lawsuit from everything that occurred back in January of this year, was ‘null and void,’ and that includes the Superintendent’s contract.

“And on top of that, he d(Puyau) did his own evaluation and sent it in the mail. It represented his view of himself,” said Pillette.

“Legal advised us, that you have 30 days to appeal. And the final judgment hasn’t come across for that, so there’s still some time to appeal. If that’s the case, then the contract requires an evaluation, is still in effect,’ said Jean Broussard, Board Member for District E.

With 3 current Board Members not returning after the new year, some are hoping that the new board members will bring change.

“They should get together and just start it over again,” said Gerald Gaspard, who attended the meeting.

“It’s always a faction, one way or the other. And if you ask my opinion, I think the problem is the Superintendent. He creates the division on the Board,” said Pillette.

“When you go into battle, and you take out the General and you still win the war, then that reflects the leader that the General was, that we were able to go forward. With all this turmoil this year and when Jerome was put on leave, the School System still functioned,” said Broussard.

Puyau says any individual Board Member can appeal the Attorney General’s lawsuit, which makes his contract valid.

And as long as the appeal process if still taking place, he’s still warranted to that evaluation.

There was an injunction in the courts today, filed by only 4 Board Members against Mr. Puyau, wanting a judge to rule that it was not legal for him to return to work a few weeks ago.

The new Board Members will be sworn in on the third week of January.

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