GREENBELT, Md. (DC News Now) — James Spence said he has been in awe of Mariame Toure Sylla, the French teacher at the school he is principal of in Prince George’s County.

“Beautiful spirit. Beautiful. Very religious. Heavy convictions,” Spence said.

Though he’s troubled by the strange and mysterious disappearance of Madam Sylla, as they call her at the Dora Kennedy French Immersion School. She vanished without a trace on July 29.

“It’s causing us a lot of stress amongst our staff but we’re holding together,” Spence told DC News Now in an exclusive interview on Wednesday.

Spence said he isn’t ready to give up on his colleague who made an indelible impact on her peers and pupils alike.

“What I remember the most is Madam Sylla’s compassion for her students and her standard for wanting them to leave her classroom highly proficient in French,” he said.

School officials said they will hold a second vigil for the beloved teacher on Sunday, Aug. 27 at 2 p.m. on school grounds.

Classroom 116 is where Sylla worked her magic with her students before police said she disappeared near her apartment in Greenbelt. She was last seen in Schrom Hills Park where she often walked before or after her 8 p.m. prayers, according to her family and friends.

Her name is still all around the bare room that will soon be teeming with her pupils and a replacement teacher.

Known to her colleagues as a loyal person and dedicated to her Muslim faith, they are troubled and saddened at how she simply vanished last month. Police said they have no clues in her disappearance and have sought the public’s help.

“It has an emotional toll on us,” Sandrine Boukabara, the assistant principal at the school and a close friend to Sylla, said. “She’s one of the pillar teachers here. So it will affect the whole community, the teachers. Everybody knows her.

Several families and parents who were taught by Sylla decade ago contacted her because they were concerned about what has happened to her.

Fati Toure, who flew in from Ivory Coast, Africa, to help lead the search for her sister, said she’s “feeling better now” about the police and community’s efforts to find her.

“They are using some big technology and waiting for some answers,” Toure said. “Everybody is doing its best to find Mamou.”