VOTERS ASKED TO RENEW DEDICATED FUNDING FOR SCHOOL OPERATIONS ON OCT. 14
The Livingston Parish School Board is asking voters to renew a 10-year, 7.18 mill property tax that is dedicated to operational costs for every school in the parish.
The proposition on the Oct. 14 election ballot is not a new tax, and it will not increase the amount of taxes currently being paid each year by parish property owners.
“This renewal proposition is for the continuation of a dedicated funding source that has been in effect in Livingston Parish since 1979,” Superintendent Rick Wentzel said. “The monies generated by this millage make up one of the district’s largest revenue sources and is critical to our day-to-day operations.”
Wentzel noted that the 7.18 mills are projected to generate more than $3.5 million of the school system’s annual budget. These dedicated monies pay for the salaries and worker benefits of essential staff and employees, including school secretaries, bus drivers, custodians and paraprofessionals. These funds also pay for instructional supplies and equipment for classrooms, administrative supply needs, classroom furniture, day-to-day cleaning supplies and general maintenance needs.
Election Day is Oct. 14. Early voting is available Sept. 30 to Oct. 7.
LIVE OAK SENIOR NAMED NATIONAL MERIT SCHOLARSHIP SEMIFINALIST
Ethan Brooks, a senior at Live Oak High School, has been named a National Merit Scholarship Semifinalist.
The National Merit Scholarship Program recognizes and honors academically talented students across the United States, and it is one of the most prestigious scholarships offered.
To enter the competition, a student must take the PSAT test during his or her junior year of high school. From the 1.6 million students who meet entry requirement, approximately 15,000 are selected as finalists. All winners of Merit Scholarship awards are chosen from the finalist group based on their abilities, skills and accomplishments.
As a semifinalist, Brooks has the opportunity to continue in the competition and vie for one of 7,500 National Merit Scholarships that will be offered next spring.
Brooks has a cumulative GPA of 4.3 on a 4.0 weighted scale. He scored a 34 on the ACT.
He is a senior class officer, a member of the school’s BETA Club, Robotics Club, SHARE Club, Future Business Leaders of America, KEY Club, Art Club and Fellowship of Christian Athletes. He also served as a school Ambassador, was on the committee to design the school’s Academic Letterman Jacket, and is a member of the Mu Alpha Theta Honor Society.
JUBAN PARC ELEMENTARY STUDENTS BENEFITTING FROM FLEXIBLE CLASSROOM
Students at Juban Parc Elementary School are learning from a new perspective this school year – and like the cliché says, it comes from where they are sitting. Or better yet, how they are sitting.
Several of their classrooms have been redesigned to incorporate more flexibility in their daily routine. Seating options include bouncy balls, wobbly stools, floor cushions and a futon.
Students are allowed to choose the type of seating and area in the classroom that’s most comfortable for them. In some cases, the options help students manage their restlessness, other options are just more comfortable than the traditional desks with hard-backed chairs and they make it easier for them to collaborate with their classmates.
“We are changing our classroom culture to give our students the space and room they need to move about and collaborate with others. The options are helping our students focus better on what we’re trying to do in our classes, and that’s boosting learning,” Juban Parc Elementary Principal Shanna Steed said.
Studies suggest that children who participate in short bouts of physical activity within the classroom have more on-task behavior, with the best improvement seen in students who are least on-task initially.
LIVINGSTON PARISH SCHOOLS HELP HURRICANE HARVEY VICTIMS
Several schools across the parish recently collected donations for flood victims in the Houston area, after devastation was caused by Hurricane Harvey. The donations helped to purchase cleaning supplies, gift cards and housing goods.
“Our schools just wanted to give back,” Southside Junior High Principal Wes Partin said. “We can remember when the flood took place, how many people affected our lives.”
Partin, along with Juban Parc Junior High Assistant Principal Justin Wax and Denham Springs Junior High Principal Bryan Wax, filled a rental truck with more than $10,000 in relief aid and drove to Humble, Texas.
He said nearly 6,000 people came out to receive items. After handing out the supplies, Partin said he and the other Livingston Parish administrators helped to tear out damaged material from homes.
ASSESS THE NEED PROGRAM PROVIDES SCHOOL SUPPLIES FOR 17TH YEAR
Livingston Parish Assessor Jeff Taylor, local businesses, and area volunteers once again sponsored the Assess the Need program in Livingston Parish to provide school supplies for more than 2,600 students. This was the 17th year the annual campaign has helped needy families receive school supplies for their students.
Most supplies were purchased in bulk and given to school principals and counselors to hand out to students on the campus during the first week of school.
A “Chef’s Night Out” event at Suma Hill Conference Center benefitting Assess the Need will be held Oct. 26 at 6:30 p.m. All proceeds from the event will go to help with supply needs in Livingston Parish Public Schools. Call the Livingston Parish Assessor’s Office at 225-686-7278 for information on how to purchase tickets.
VFW MEMBERS PRESENT NEW FLAG TO ELEMENTARY STUDENTS
The VFW Memorial Post 7017 recently donated a new American flag and a solar powered light to Lewis Vincent Elementary in honor of veterans in Denham Springs.
Post Commander Robert Nolan and members Vance Sutton and Tommy Shaffett made a special presentation to the school. They talked to a second-grade class about the importance and symbolism of the flag, as well as the significance of remembering the nation’s war veterans.