Cooper: CHS Principal Montgomery leaving "With a heavy heart"
COMMERCE - Commerce ISD administrators are pushing forward with the search for a new high school principal after receiving word that Virdie Montgomery had accepted the same position at Wylie.
Montgomery, who was hired by the district four years ago, announced the news through his facebook page Wednesday.
Superintendent Blake Cooper says the biggest thing Montgomery accomplished in his four years at Commerce was overall school moral.
“He has truly transformed that building into a building that kids love to be there,” Cooper said. “He loves kids and loves being the role model for kids... You want your kids to go to a school that they feel safe. They want to go to a school that’s a great atmosphere. And that’s what he’s provided there.”
Named the 2010 Citizen of the Year by the Commerce Chamber of Commerce, Montgomery has been instrumental in, among other things, the district's involvement in Rachel's Challenge. And despite commuting every day from Wylie, according to Cooper, he was a frequent spectator at various extracurricular activities to support his students.
“It’s one of the toughest jobs there is in the district, being a high school principal. And I think he’s done a superb job in provided an atmosphere where kids can go to school, they can enjoy themselves and learning is fun.”
Montgomery served as assistant principal at Wylie High School from 2006-2008 before leaving to become principal of Commerce High School. He began his teaching career in 1977 at Brownfield High School, later serving at Claude High School then Levelland ISD before moving to Wylie, where he’s continued to live while commuting to and from Commerce.
An emotional Blake Cooper added, “He loves Commerce. So he’s leaving with a heavy heart, but he’s excited about his new adventure. Anybody that knows Virdie Montgomery knows that it would have to be an ideal situation for him to leave and he’s going to an ideal situation personally.”
The Wylie ISD Board said on its website they hope to approve the hire in its meeting later this month.