WALKER HIGH SCHOOL SENIOR NAMED NATIONAL MERIT SCHOLARSHIP SEMIFINALIST
Walker High School Senior Caszandra Joy T. Dantea has been named a National Merit semifinalist.
She is among 199 high school seniors in Louisiana who were selected for the honor. Those state winners are among the 16,000 semifinalists named across the nation for the 2024 class. The semifinalists are now eligible to compete for National Merit scholarships valued at nearly $28 million. Those winners will be announced in the spring.
The 199 Louisiana semifinalists are the students who scored the highest in the state during the 2021 administration of the PSAT, a preliminary test to the well-known SAT college placement exam.
JUBAN PARC ELEMENTARY NAMED NATIONAL BLUE RIBBON SCHOOL
Juban Parc Elementary is one of only nine Louisiana schools selected this year for the honor. The others include St. Joseph’s Academy and St. Luke’s Episcopal in Baton Rouge, A.E. Phillips Lab School in Ruston, Archbishop Hannan High in Covington, Boley Elementary School in West Monroe, Broadmoor Elementary in Houma, Caddo Parish Middle Magnet School in Shreveport, and N.S.U. Elementary Lab School in Natchitoches.
“We are so thrilled and proud of our students and our incredible educators who have worked so hard to make a difference,” said Lauren Kennedy, principal of Juban Parc Elementary.
“This award recognizes our school for closing the achievement gap among all subgroups,” she said. “To help us do that, we have instituted community connection events that empower our students to connect with other students and with the community we live in. We are growing our students inside and outside the classroom.”
Public schools that earn Blue Ribbon awards are first nominated by their respective states; applications are submitted to the U.S. Department of Education for consideration. Private schools are recommended by the Council of American Private Education.
Public schools can earn their ribbons in two ways: if they are among the top-performing schools in their respective states, or if they have shown substantial progress in closing the achievement gap between all students and historically low-performing subsets of students, such as racial minorities and those living in poverty.
EIGHT PARISH HIGH SCHOOLS IN STATE’S TOP 100
The 2023-2024 report ranks schools whose students demonstrate outstanding outcomes above expectations in math, reading and science state assessments, earn qualifying scores in an array of college-level exams, and graduate in high proportions.
The rankings for all Livingston Parish high schools are:
- Holden High School – ranked #15, scoring a 35.9 college readiness ranking and an 88% graduation rate (180 enrollment in grades 9-12)
- Live Oak High School – ranked #20, scoring a 35.2 college readiness ranking and a 95% graduation rate (1402 enrollment in grades 9-12)
- Springfield High School – ranked #45, scoring a 20.7 college readiness ranking and a 90% graduation rate (398 enrolled in grades 9-12)
- French Settlement High School – ranked #56, scoring a 31.2 college readiness ranking and a 93% graduation rate (293 enrolled in grades 9-12)
- Denham Springs High School – ranked #66, scoring a 20.4 college readiness ranking and a 92% graduation rate (1617 enrollment in grades 10-12)
- Maurepas High School – ranked #74, scoring a 20.7 college readiness ranking and an 84% graduation rate (108 enrolled in grades 9-12)
- Walker High School – ranked #75, scoring a 17.5 college readiness ranking and an 89% graduation rate (1998 enrolled in grades 9-12)
- Albany High School – ranked #86, scoring a 25.3 college readiness ranking and an 89% graduation rate (599 enrolled in grades 9-12)
- Doyle High School – ranked #105, scoring an 18.3 college readiness ranking and an 87% graduation rate (382 enrolled in grades 9-12)
Stephen Link, District 9
- Inducted to the school board in January 2023
- Serves on Budget & Goals and Transportation Committees, and Chairs Curriculum & Policy Committee
- Resident of Albany
- Former Teacher, Assistant Principal and Principal in LPPS
- Earned Bachelor of Arts Degree from SLU in Hammond, Masters Degree from University of Southern Mississippi in Hattiesburg, and 30+ Education Certification from SLU in Hammond
- Graduate of Hammond High School
- Married to Michele Link, retired teacher/instructional coach at Albany Lower Elementary
- Father to Sarah Link Williams and Logan Link, both graduates of Albany High School; grandfather of Balen Williams (5 years).
“I am working to increase parent participation in our Albany Schools. I will find creative ways to involve the community in our Albany Schools, and I will be the District 9 advocate for capital investments in our schools’ infrastructure.”