Back to Class

Assistant Principal Dupuis returns to teaching


Amy Chung, Staff Writer

After two years of being an assistant principal, Francessca Dupuis is handing in her walkie talkie and heading back into the classroom.

“I’m really fortunate, thankful and excited to continue being a member of this school community,” Dupuis said. “Because it’s the place that I know and love.” 

Xavian Breer ‘23 was in Dupuis’s 9th grade Civics class in 2020 and is glad that Dupuis is going back to teaching history. 

“She was understanding because I was struggling a little bit,” Breer said. “She was understanding for everybody.”

Dupuis says that one of the reasons she is heading back into the classroom is to get more teacher-student interactions.

“I’ve struggled a lot since taking this [AP] position,” Dupuis said. “And what I have missed the most, and that’s been part of my struggle, is contact time with students.”

Dupuis is also hoping for a better work-life balance. 

“My last few years of teaching prior to becoming an AP, I was finally getting to a point in my career as a teacher where I was in a groove,” Dupuis said. “And with being an assistant principal, my work life balance has been really hard.” 

Assistant Principal Melanee Alexander has been working with Dupuis for two years and understands the pressures of being an administrator.

“There’s some long hours. That’s the reality of it,” Alexander said. “We go home from work and do lots of care for the school, care for kids. That sort of weighs on the brain, on the heart.”

Still, Dupuis looks at her tenure as an AP in a positive light. 

“[What is] really important and valuable to me, is the relationships that I’ve built with Ms. Alexander, Ms. Paxton [and] Ms. McBride,” Dupuis said. 

Alexander echoed this sentiment. 

We have a synergy,” Alexander said. “We complement each other, so I will miss that so much. And I really trust Ms. Dupuis’s judgment.”

In addition, Dupuis believes that she has become better at making hard decisions. 

“That is something that I’ve really appreciated about being in this position,” Dupuis said. “It’s pushed me out of my comfort zone at times and forced me to strengthen [my] skills.”

Dupuis isn’t the only administrator that misses the classroom. Alexander says she would like to co-teach one block with an English teacher next year.

“I know being full time in the classroom is too much for me,” Alexander said. “Grading and planning drives me crazy, but I [would] like to grade and plan and do one class.”

Ideas to increase student-admin interactions have circled the administrators’ offices before and hopes for the ideas to become reality remain strong.

“I remember having conversations with Ms. McBride, wondering how [admin] could get in the classroom more. And I would love for that to be the future of BHS administrators,” Alexander said.