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Attorney sends letter to the Madison Co. school board regarding former Hazel Green High principal's resignation

According to the letter, former Hazel Green High principal Darrell Long wants to rescind his resignation.

Posted: Aug 29, 2018 6:20 AM
Updated: Aug 29, 2018 7:35 PM

A letter to Madison County school board members says former Hazel Green High principal Darrell Long wants to rescind his resignation.

Darrell Long resigned as principal in early August for family and personal reasons according to a Madison County School Board member.

The letter from The Law Offices of Mastando and Artrip states “as we understand it, Mr. Long was forced to resign as a result of the threat of termination and criminal prosecution for something he did not do.”

The letter goes into background information stating Superintendent Matt Massey’s opinion of Long changed in 2017 when Massey learned Long had aspirations of becoming a school superintendent. The letter states in the spring of 2017, Massey encouraged Long to “seek appointment to the Decatur City School’s Superintendent’s position and when Long failed to do so, Massey encouraged him to keep looking into the possibility and Long shared he wanted to go to the Superintendent Academy.” In 2018, according to Mastando and Artrip, Long told Massey he planned to enroll in the Superintendent College in Tuscaloosa, Alabama this fall, which according to the letter “proved to be his undoing.”

The letter goes on to state in 2018 “Ms. Kathy Helton asked Mr. Long if he wanted her to remove certain absence notations from school records for those students who failed to matriculate and instead left school never to return. Mr. Long gave his consent.” The letter states this is a process that’s performed in every high school in the state and is referred to as the process of purging the roles of teenagers who drop out.

According to the letter, there was an investigation conducted by Superintendent Matt Massey and “the details of that investigation are still a mystery and as a result Mr. Long was accused of wrongdoing. He was threatened with criminal prosecution and termination if he did not resign. Mr. Massey never revealed to Mr. Long what he was accused of.” The letter goes on to state “there was never any credible evidence of criminal conduct. The crime does not exist.” That’s when, according to the letter, Long was given 24 hours to decide his course of action.

Long is requesting one of the following to happen:
1) Reinstatement pursuant to his three-year employment agreement
2) Payment of the balance of the remuneration under the agreement
3) A date by which a proper termination hearing be set and conducted

WAAY 31 did ask Superintendent Matt Massey about the allegations in the letter, he told us “The things that were in that letter, or that were reported, are just not true.”

Massey recommended Dr. Quinn Headen as the new principal of Hazel Green High at Tuesday night’s Madison County Board of Education meeting.

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