Camden Middle School principal placed on administrative leave

(Photo: Camden Middle School/Facebook)

CAMDEN COUNTY, N.C. (WAVY) — The principal of Camden Middle School is out on administrative leave.

Ernest Cooley (Photo: Camden County Schools website)

Camden County Schools Superintendent Melvin Hawkins confirmed Principal Ernest Cooley was placed on administrative leave last Thursday.

Hawkins said this stems from a meeting Cooley had with some eighth grade boys a week ago Monday. Cooley was trying to figure out who left graffiti on the bathroom wall, which was derogatory toward him.

School officials are investigating if Cooley said something inappropriate or questionable to the students. The students and Cooley are being interviewed about the meeting. There were no other adults at the meeting.

Cooley has been principal of Camden Middle for seven years. He won the teacher of the year award for the 2012-2013 school year.