LOWELL — School committee member Andy Descoteaux resigned his seat on Monday, effective immediately.
In his resignation letter sent to Superintendent of Schools Joel Boyd, Descoteaux cited health issues as the reason for his sudden resignation.
“Following a recent diagnosis and in accordance with the strong recommendation of my physician, I am resigning, effective immediately, from my position on the Lowell School Board. Out of respect for the important work that is being done on behalf of students, I request that you formally submit this resignation on my behalf so that my replacement can be sworn in as soon as possible,” Descoteaux said in his resignation letter.
Descoteaux did not respond to a request for comment.
In a statement, Boyd expressed his gratitude for Descoteaux’s service.
“In the three years that I have worked with committee member Descoteaux, I have always appreciated the professionalism he brought to the committee and his perspective as a retired Lowell teacher,” said Boyd. “We thank committee member Descoteaux for his commitment to Lowell Public Schools and wish him and his family the best.”
Mayor Sokhary Chau also sent his best wishes to Descoteaux following the news.
“I want to thank Andy for his service on the school committee,” Chau said. “Although I have only worked with him for a short time, it has been a pleasure. I am sad to see him go and wish him well.
With Descoteaux no longer a member of the school committee, Susie Chhoun is now in the running for the seat.
City attorney Christine O’Connor said the office of elections confirmed that Chhoun was the district’s second-highest-ranking and eligible to take the seat. The verification process included confirming that Chhoun lives in the district and is a registered voter.
Reached by phone, Chhoun said she respected Descoteaux and wished him luck. She added that she was grateful to the city and the voters who trusted her message, allowing her to serve on the school board.
“Right now, I’m just very humbled and very honored to be able to serve our community,” Chhoun said.
Chhoun said his top priority is to ensure the needs of families, students and teachers are met.
“It’s an honorable role in the city and I will learn and go from strength to strength and continue to work with other members, to better our city and our students,” Chhoun said.