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Acadia Superintendent announces retirement - KATC.com | Continuous News Coverage | Acadiana-Lafayette

Acadia Superintendent announces retirement

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Acadia Superintendent John Bourque Acadia Superintendent John Bourque

Acadia Parish schools superintendent John Bourque will retire this summer.  Bourque announced his retirement during Monday night's school board meeting.

"In 52 years, I haven't had a summer off," Bourque told KATC.  "I told the board about a month ago that I was 99-percent sure (about retiring), but I made it official Monday night."

Bourque has worked in the education system for 52 years as a teacher, coach, principal, and superintendent.  His career began in 1965 at the Academy of the Immaculate Conception, which later became Opelousas Catholic.  There, he coached the school's basketball team to an appearance in the LHSAA Top 20 and served as an assistant coach on the 1974 state football championship team.

From there, Bourque moved to Eunice High School, where he was the head football coach.  He coached the Bobcats football team to the 1982 Class 3A state football championship.  In 1995, Bourque became Eunice High's principal, holding that position until being named Acadia Parish's superintendent in 2002.

Bourque says he plans to spend more time with his family.  He says the most worthwhile experience in five decades of education is changing students' lives.

"There have been so many good things," Bourque said.  "The biggest thing is when former students come back and tell you that you had a big part in their success in life.

"State superintendent of the year, state football champion, (and the other) individual honors never meant anything to me.  I had a student tell me that I was his favorite teacher in high school.  I was just a coach, but to hear that means everything to me."

Bourque's retirement will take effect at the end of June.  Bourque says the school board will call for applications around March 1 and hire someone before Bourque retires so he can work with them during the transitional period.

Bourque says he's grateful to have had the long career he has had.

"It's been a good run," Bourque said.  "I've worked with good people, but you knew the time would come."

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