Mr. J. F. Parnell was the Superintendent of JISD schools for 43 years. A 1920 graduate of Union University in Jackson, Tennessee, Mr. Parnell received his Master's in Administration and Economics from Peabody College in 1935. Mr. Parnell taught in Tennessee and then was a principal in Clarksville, Texas.
Mr. Parnell accepted the Superintendent's job in 1924 at the age of 25. He served in that capacity until he retired in July 1967. Upon retirement, he was given a new Ford Ranchero.
Parnell Elementary opened in September 1, 1955. On May 17, 1955, the JISD School Board named the new school for him.