Donald Thornton Jr., Ph.D., a longtime employee of the Lafayette Parish School System, is moving, but, thankfully, for Lafayette students, it's only two miles west on Congress Street.

In a press release distributed today, school system Superintendent Donald Auguillard, Ph.D., announced Thornton's appointment as principal of Lafayette High School. Thornton, who most recently served the Hub City as principal of Lafayette Middle School, is replacing Patrick Leonard, Ph.D., who is leaving after 13 years at Lafayette High.

Thornton is not a stranger to the Lafayette High School campus. He once served as part of the school's administration as assistant principal. Among his other positions in Lafayette Parish, he has served as a social studies teacher at Comeaux High; a high school lead teacher at N.P. Moss Preparatory Academy; and an assistant principal at Paul Breaux Middle.

He has also served on the Grade Level Expectations Revision Committee for the Louisiana Department of Education.

According to the release, Thornton earned his bachelor’s of science degree from Northwestern State University and master’s and doctoral degrees in education from the University of Louisiana at Lafayette.