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A.C. Williams’ Underwood resigns, Hays appointed principal

Scott Harvey

COMMERCE - Less than a week after learning that Commerce High School Principal Virdie Montgomery had accepted the same position at Wylie High School, the CISD Board Monday accepted the resignation of A.C. Williams Elementary School Principal Wes Underwood.

Underwood, formerly assistant principal at A.C. Williams, has served as principal since the new building was constructed in fall 2009. He’ll become the director of social studies curriculum at Greenville High School, according to Superintendent Blake Cooper.

“Good things are happening here and there are [other districts] coming to get our folks,” Cooper said, alluding to the loss of both Underwood and Virdie Montgomery.  

He added that he’s pleased the district is being looked upon so favorably among other schools, and is glad it isn’t the other way around.

While the search to fill the vacancy left by Montgomery is ongoing, board members Monday approved the hiring of Commerce Middle School Assistant Principal Deanna Hays as new A.C. Williams principal. She was the assistant principal at A.C. Williams as early as five years ago.

“I can’t tell you how excited I am to come back. This is my home,” Hays commented following Monday’s announcement. “I will do my darndest to make sure every kid runs into the school house and doesn’t want to leave.”

Hays is a graduate of Commerce High School and East Texas State University.


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