When Natchez native Shannon Doughty retired from the Gulfport School district and then resigned as STEM instructional Coach and teacher at Hope Academy in Gulfport to return home, she never envisioned having an administrative job in Concordia Parish.
“I had put out some feelers about an instructional coaching job,” Doughty said. “A week later, the superintendent called me and talked to me about the principal position. After we talked, she offered me the job.”
Concordia Parish Superintendent Toyua Watson said she was impressed with Doughty’s experience, vocational education and enthusiasm.
“Shannon is able to grasp a whole lot of info concerning college preparation, as well,” Watson said. “And, she has a strong knowledge of vocational setting for children. I had actually offered her several positions. We had 14 interviews for the administration job, but most were elementary administration. We are excited about having Shannon as Ferriday principal.”
Doughty worked in the Natchez-Adams School District from 1996-2014, serving as assistant principal at Natchez High School.
She worked for the Gulfport School District from 2014 to 2022, serving as principal of Gulfport Central Middle School, and was assistant principal at Anniston Elementary.
Doughty said she treasures her time in Gulfport, but is excited to be back in the Miss-Lou.
“It’s good to be home,” she said. “I am super excited. The welcome I have received from Ferriday and Concordia Parish has lit a fire under me. This is my 28th year in education, and I feel rejuvenated. I want to be a strong encourager for the kids and the staff. I believe in this school, and I want to help grow it.”
Doughty received a specialist degree in the Ph.D program at Southern Mississippi in Education Leadership - District Level. She has completed all of her coursework in Specialist in Educational Leadership at Alcorn State in Lorman, where she also received her Masters in Science paid for by an NASA Fellowship.
Doughty was the Renewed National Board License 2011 Teacher of the Year for Fallin Career and Technology Center and 2010 District Teach of the Year.
In 2001, Doughty was named Natchez High School Teacher of the Year.
Doughty and her husband Darin have three children. Her official first day is July 1.
“I am going to spend a lot of time in June learning the environment and the people I will be working with,” she said. “I want to help improve attendance at Ferriday High. I want to make our school a place where teachers and kids want to be.”
Doughty, a personal fitness instructor, was assistant powerlifting coach for the Gulfport School districts, and was a fitness training director at Prime Athletes-X Functional Training Center.
Doughty said she learned a lot dealing with the COVID-19 pandemic.
“We had losses in our community,” she said. “I learned more about resilience and being there for others. COVID helped me realize people need each other. It stressed to me more to put God first, family second and then my job. My work became a mission field. It also taught me to never give up,”
Doughty said she has no doubt she’s in the right position at Ferriday.
“I love kids, and I love what I do,” she said. “I want to make Ferriday High even more special. I’m here for Ferriday High and with Ferriday High. Students all over the nation have been through so much. I want to be there for the ones here.”