The principal of Lower Richland High School, the district’s second largest school, has been transferred to a job at headquarters.
Rose Pelzer no longer is principal, Richland 1 spokeswoman Karen York said Wednesday. Pelzer became Lower Richland’s principal about two years ago after working at Lake Marion High School in Orangeburg County, according to her biographical information.
Ericka Hursey, principal at Heyward Gibbes Middle School, will take over Jan. 2 at Lower Richland, which has 1,190 students, York said. Nicole Irby, assistant principal at Gibbes Middle, will be the acting principal when Hursey assumes her new duties, the spokeswoman said.
Pelzer’s new job entails being a coordinator helping to implement the district’s professional development and coaching programs in the Instructional Services department, York said.
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Frances Parker, a retired educator, whose children attended Richland 1 schools, said Pelzer was a controversial figure at Lower Richland. More than a half dozen teachers had told administrators they would not return to the high school if Pelzer remained principal, said Parker, citing a network of contacts in the district.
Parker told the school board Tuesday about conditions at Lower Richland, which she said suffers from “a decades old reputation for having a culture of violence.”
“The vicious lynching of a young lady in the LR cafeteria on November 28 by a group of students whose members are known for fighting ... is evidence of this culture of violence that is permitted,” Parker said.