Ferriday elementary principal retiring

Published 12:01 am Friday, July 10, 2015

VIDALIA — Rick Brown, former Vidalia High School principal and current Ferriday Lower Elementary School principal, is retiring.

The official announcement was made at the July 9 Concordia Parish School Board meeting. His retirement becomes effective today.

“I did receive the resignation of Mr. Rick Brown this morning at 11 o’clock,” Concordia Parish School District Superintendent Paul Nelson told the Board.

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Brown’s retirement did not come as a complete surprise to Nelson.

“He’s talked about retiring with me before,” Nelson said after the meeting.

Nelson notified Board Member Raymond Riley Sr. after receiving the letter, and then announced Brown’s retirement to the board at the meeting.

Board Member and member of the personnel committee Rickey Raven said he wished Brown well in his new endeavors.

“I was hoping he would stay,” Raven said. “I know some of the new staff were looking forward to him.”

Brown is one of three principals who are leaving the district. The other two principals are Bobbie Hinson, Ferriday Junior High School, and James Davis, Ferriday High School.

While Davis resigned to take another job, Hinson, like Brown, retired. Her retirement became effective on June 29.

Now there are three principal positions to fill, something which concerns Board Member Warren Enterkin.

“Leadership is hard to come by, and I don’t think we have a lot of people with administrative degrees in the parish waiting in line to take these jobs,” Enterkin said after the meeting.

Brown and Hinson were two of five principals who were moved by Nelson. Brown was moved from Vidalia High School to Ferriday Lower Elementary and Hinson was moved to Ferriday Junior High School from Ferriday Lower Elementary.

The decision to move Brown proved unpopular with many VHS students and parents. Some parents formed The Vidalia Parents, a group opposed to the reassignments.

Before the meeting, Nelson said the deadline for applications for administrative positions is July 15.

Interviews are scheduled to start the next day.

“We’re going to fill all administrative positions by Monday (July 20),” Nelson said.

Nelson said this included all positions left vacant by district officials moving to different schools within the district.

After the announcement, Nelson said Brown’s retirement does not change the timetable.

School board members also went into an executive session to discuss Nelson’s evaluation results, which Riley said will be publicly discussed later. The motion to go into an executive session was made by Board Member Fred Butcher and seconded by Raven.

It passed unanimously. The executive session lasted approximately 40 minutes, and the board took no action following it.

In other news Thursday night:

-The board also discussed paving over tennis courts at Vidalia High School to create parking lots.

Riley raised the subject of getting additional administrative help at the Concordia Parish Academy of Math, Science & Technology. Riley said Principal Nancy Anders would need help with the workload.

However, Nelson asked for the motion to be taken under advisement, giving him time to focus on the three principal vacancies.

“At this point, I would really like to have some conversations with her,” Nelson said, referring to Anders.

Nelson said Anders told him she would prefer an additional teacher to additional administrative help.

A motion was made by Butcher to take additional administrative help at the school under advisement. The motion was seconded by Board Member John Bostic, and passed 8-1.

-The Board announced its intention to adopt its 2015 ad valorem property tax millage rates at its Aug. 13 meeting.