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St. Landry Parish School Board, Louisiana

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St. Landry Parish School Board
Opelousas, Louisiana
St. Landry Parish School Board seal.PNG
District Profile
Superintendent:Edward Brown
Enrollment:14,922
Graduation rate:65.4%[1]
Number of schools:32
Budget: $112,846,595
Website:School Home Page
Board of Education
Board president:Josie Frank
Board members:14 partisan
Term length:4 years
St. Landry Parish School Board is a school district in Louisiana. In the 2011-2012 school year, St. Landry was the 14th-largest school district in Louisiana and served 14,922 students.[2]

About the district

St. Landry Parish School Board is located in St. Landry Parish, Louisiana.
St. Landry Parish School Board is located in south-central Louisiana. Opelousas is the seat of the parish government. St. Landry Parish was home to approximately 83,454 residents according to 2013 estimates by the United States Census Bureau.[3]

Demographics

St. Landry Parish underperformed compared to the rest of Louisiana in terms of higher education achievement in 2012. The United States Census Bureau found that 13.2 percent of St. Landry Parish residents aged 25 years and older had attained a bachelor's degree compared to 21.4 percent for Louisiana as a whole. The median household income for the parish was $36,183 compared to $44,673 statewide. The poverty rate in the parish was 26.4 percent compared to 18.7 percent for the entire state.[3]

Racial Demographics, 2013[3]
Race St. Landry Parish (%) Louisiana (%)
White 56.7 63.5
Black or African American 41.3 32.4
American Indian and Alaska Native 0.4 0.8
Asian 0.5 1.7
Native Hawaiian and Other Pacific Islander >0.5 0.1
Two or More Races 1.2 1.5
Hispanic or Latino 1.8 4.7

Presidential Voting Pattern, St. Landry Parish[4]
Year Democratic Vote Republican Vote
2012 19,668 21,475
2008 20,268 21,650
2004 18,166 18,315
2000 15,843 20,421

Note: The United States Census Bureau considers "Hispanic or Latino" to be a place of origin, not a race. Therefore, the Census allows citizens to report both their race and that they are from a "Hispanic or Latino" place of origin simultaneously. As a result, the percentages in each column of the racial demographics table will exceed 100 percent. Each column will add up to 100 percent after removing the "Hispanic or Latino" place of origin percentages, although rounding by the Census Bureau may make the total one- or two-tenths off from being exactly 100 percent.[5] This Ballotpedia page provides a more detailed explanation of how the Census Bureau handles race and ethnicity in its surveys.

Superintendent

The superintendent of St. Landry Parish School Board is Edward Brown, who was appointed by a 7-4 vote of the school board in May 2013. Candy B. Gerace, Donnie Perron, Huey Wyble, Kyle C. Boss, Quincy Richard, Roger Young and Harry B. Fruge voted in favor of Brown's appointment. Anthony Standberry, Charles W. Ross, Randy Wagley and Josie Frank voted against it, and Raymond P. Cassimere and John Miller abstained from the vote. Prior to this appointment, Brown served as the districts supervisor of child welfare and attendance.[6]

District superintendents
Name Term of service
Edward Brown May 2013 - Present
Joseph Cassimere* March 2012 - May 2013
Donnie Perron* October 2011 - March 2012
Michael Nassif N/A - October 2011
*Indicates an interim superintendent.

Prior superintendents

Joseph Cassimere, brother of school board member Raymond P. Cassimere (D), served as the interim superintendent for more than 14 months prior to Brown's appointment to the position. Cassimere was the first African-American to serve as superintendent in the district's history.[7] While Cassimere was being considered to permanently fill the post, two school board members attempted to sell their votes to him. John Miller (D) and Quincy Richard (D) both had to resign from the board following the scandal.

The position for permanent superintendent became open when then superintendent Michael Nassif resigned in 2011. Donnie Perron served as the interim superintendent less than six months before resigning, at which point Cassimere took over.[6]

School board

St. Landry Parish School Board is overseen by a board comprised of 13 partisan members who are elected to represent geographical districts for four-year terms. The partisan affiliation in the table below represents the affiliation which the officeholder held in his or her most recent election.

St. Landry Parish School Board
Member District Partisan
Affiliation
Assumed
Office
Term
Ends
Anthony Standberry District 1 Democratic Democratic Party January 1, 2007 December 31, 2018
Charles W. Ross District 2 Democratic Democratic Party January 1, 2011 December 31, 2018
Milton "Coach" Ambres District 3 Democratic Democratic Party October 2013 December 31, 2018
Raymond P. Cassimere District 4 Democratic Democratic Party January 1, 2011 December 31, 2018
Candy B. Gerace District 5 Democratic Democratic Party January 1, 2007 December 31, 2018
Donnie Perron District 6 Democratic Democratic Party October 2013 December 31, 2018
Huey Wyble District 7 Democratic Democratic Party January 1, 1993 December 31, 2018
Kyle C. Boss District 8 Democratic Democratic Party N/A December 31, 2018
Randy Wagley District 9 Independent Independent 2012 December 31, 2018
Hazel McCrea-Sias District 10 Democratic Democratic Party May 2014 December 31, 2018
Roger Young District 11 Republican Republican Party January 1, 1999 December 31, 2018
Albert "Al" Hayes Jr. District 12 Democratic Democratic Party January 1, 2015 December 31, 2018
Mary Ellen Donatto District 13 Democratic Democratic Party January 1, 2015 December 31, 2018

School board elections

See also: St. Landry Parish School Board elections (2014)

The 13 school board members are elected concurrently by district in partisan elections. This means that regular school board elections are held every four years with all nine members being up for re-election at that time. Additionally, all members are elected by a geographically defined district which they represent. Any member who at the end of his or her term has served more than two and one-half terms in the last three consecutive terms cannot be re-elected in the following term. However, they can be re-elected following the one term break. This term limit first took effect with terms beginning on or after January 2015 and does not apply retroactively to terms started prior to that date.[8]

School board candidates in Louisiana are elected by majority vote, which means the winner must receive more than 50 percent of the votes cast in the general election to win the seat. Runoff elections are held between the top two candidates for races where no candidate receives a majority. Candidates who are unopposed at the end of a candidate filing period are considered elected as of that date.[8]

Thirteen seats were up for general election on November 4, 2014, and one seats were determined in a runoff on December 6, 2014. The next regular school board election will be held November 2018.

Public participation in board meetings

The St. Landry Parish School Board maintains the following policy on public testimony during board meetings on their website:

PUBLIC PARTICIPATION

It is the policy of the St. Landry Parish School Board to conduct all meetings in full view of and with welcomed participation by the public. However, the Board reserves the right to recess into or call executive sessions for discussing private matters as provided by State Law. At no time shall actions be taken or resolutions made during executive sessions.

All delegations or individuals who wish to appear before the Board shall submit their requests to the Superintendent in writing at least five (5) days prior to the meeting date, stating what matters they wish to take up with the Board and the approximate time such matters should consume at the meeting. The Superintendent shall schedule a meeting with the person(s) requesting to address the Board in an attempt to satisfy the concerns expressed in the written request prior to the Board Meeting. If the person(s) making the request still wishes to address the Board following the meeting, such item shall be listed on the applicable committee's agenda at a time deemed to be appropriate. The committee report will be presented at the subsequent meeting of the full Board. Each delegation appearing before the Board shall select one person in advance as its spokesperson.

A public comment period shall be held before any vote is taken on an agenda item. The comment period shall precede each agenda item. Concerns and public comments shall be limited to five (5) minutes unless the time is waived by the majority of the Board members present. However, a person is not entitled to take up business before the Board unless the item in which he/she is interested has been placed on the agenda of that meeting. Anyone wishing to speak on a specific item must present the request ahead of time prior to convening of the meeting. Sign-up cards must be filled out before the meeting by the person wishing to speak on a specific agenda item. In addition, the President of the Board may recognize persons at the Board meetings for the purpose of introducing such persons.

In the event that the Board should add an item to its agenda after the Board meeting begins, the Board President shall orally request of the audience whether anyone in attendance would like to speak on the added agenda item. Each person indicating a desire to do so shall be given an opportunity to address the Board on each agenda item added. The Board shall delay deliberations on that agenda item until such time as all interested members of the public have had an opportunity to speak.

The President shall have the authority to remove any person disrupting or interfering in any manner with the conduction of a meeting of the Board. Complaints about individual employees are not conducive to an orderly meeting and should not be permitted.[9]

—St. Landry Parish School Board, (2008)[10]

Budget

The table below displays the budget for St. Landry Parish School Board:[11]

Expenditures by Category
School Year Staff Expenses Student Services Operational Expenses Debt Service Other Budget Total
Total % of Budget Total % of Budget Total % of Budget Total % of Budget Total % of Budget
2013-2014 $99,805,345 88.4% $0 0% $10,481,000 9.3% $2,519,000 2.2% $41,250 0% $112,846,595
Averages: $99,805,345 88% $0 0% $10,481,000 9% $2,519,000 2% $41,250 0% $112,846,595

Teacher salaries

St. Landry Parish School Board does not publish its teacher salary schedule on its website.

Schools in St. Landry Parish School Board

Enrollment

St. Landry Parish School Board served 14,922 students in the 2011-2012 school year. The district does not publicly archive enrollment data.[2]

District schools

St. Landry Parish School Board operates 22 elementary schools, three middle or junior high schools and six high schools. In addition to these 31 schools, the district also operates nine other programs. All are listed below in alphabetical order.

St. Landry Parish School Board
School Name
A-L M-Z
Alternative Program Magnet Academy of Biomedical Sciences
Arnaudville Elementary Magnet Academy of Cultural Arts
Beau Chene High North Central High
Cankton Elementary North Elementary
CAPS Northeast Elementary
Central Middle Northwest High
East Elementary Opelousas Jr. High
Eunice Adult Education Opelousas Sr. High
Eunice Career & Technical Center Palmetto Elementary
Eunice Elementary Park Vista Elementary
Eunice High Plaisance Elementary
Eunice Jr. High Port Barre Elementary
Glendale Elementary Port Barre High
Grand Coteau Elementary South Street Elementary
Grand Prairie Elementary Southwest Elementary
Grolee Elementary St. Landry Accelerated Transition
Highland Elementary St. Landry Parish Gifted Program
Krotz Springs Elementary Sunset Elementary
Lawtell Elementary Washington Career and & Technical Center
Leonville Elementary Washington Elementary

Academic performance

Louisiana administers three main sets of tests to measure the academic performance of K-12 students: DIBELS Next, iLEAP and End-of-Course tests. Additionally, districts are given a letter ranking of A-F based on performance across all grades of students.

DIBELS Next

DIBELS Next is the Dynamic Indicators of Basic Early Literacy Skills test which is administered to K-3 students statewide. The test places students into one of three categories. Those who meet the benchmark levels are placed in the "core" category, indicating they only need core reading curriculum going forward. The other two categories indicate students who need "strategic" or "intensive" intervention in reading education. The following chart outlines the percentage of students in the district in each of the categories:[12]

DIBELS Next results[13]
Testing date Kindergarten 1st grade 2nd grade 3rd grade
Core (%) Strategic (%) Intensive (%) Core (%) Strategic (%) Intensive (%) Core (%) Strategic (%) Intensive (%) Core (%) Strategic (%) Intensive (%)
Spring 2013 52 25 21 49 20 31 51 26 24 46 20 34
Fall 2012 42 20 38 57 17 26 67 15 18 61 13 26
Spring 2012 56 23 21 50 19 32 53 22 25 47 19 34
Fall 2011 41 22 37 58 15 27 60 16 24 58 14 28

iLEAP and LEAP

LEAP and iLEAP percentile ranks[13]
Year Mastery and above (%) Basic and above (%)
2014 District 14 61
Statewide 24 69
2013 District 14 62
Statewide 69 69
2012 District N/A 62
Statewide N/A 68
2011 District N/A 63
Statewide N/A 66
2010 District N/A 63
Statewide N/A 65

Louisiana 3rd through 8th grade students statewide are tested annually in English language arts, mathematics, science and social studies. These tests are called iLEAP and LEAP.

On both tests, students can earn the following scores:

  • Advanced: A student demonstrates superior performance in the subject.
  • Mastery: A student demonstrates competency of challenging subject matter and is well prepared for the next level of schooling.
  • Basic: A student demonstrates only fundamental knowledge and skills in the subject.
  • Approaching Basic: A student only partially demonstrates the fundamental knowledge and skills of the subject.
  • Unsatisfactory: A student does not demonstrate the fundamental knowledge and skills.[9]

Louisiana Department of Education website, (2014)[14]

The table on the right compares the percentage of district students scoring either mastery and higher or basic and higher on the iLEAP and LEAP with the statewide averages. The percentage of mastery and higher is not available prior to 2013 results.

End-of-course tests

High school students in Louisiana take end-of-course tests in algebra I, geometry, English II and III, biology and U.S. history. The students receive one of the following four scores on each test:

  • Excellent: A student demonstrates superior performance of the course content.
  • Good: A student demonstrates mastery of course content and is well prepared for the next level of coursework in the subject.
  • Fair: A student demonstrates only the fundamental knowledge and skills needed for the next level of coursework in the subject.
  • Needs Improvement: A student does not demonstrate the fundamental knowledge and skills needed for the next level of coursework in the subject.[9]

Louisiana Department of Education website, (2014)[15]

In the 2013-2014 school year, 53 percent of students taking end-of-course tests across all subjects in the district earned a good or excellent. This was up 1 percent from 52 percent in 2012-2013.[13]

District letter grade

Louisiana uses a letter grade system of A through F to describe school performance scores. The table on the right outlines the district's letter score by year. The scores are based on the following measurements:

A-F Letter Grade Results[16]
Year Performance
score
Letter
grade
2014 78.5 C
2013 69.0 D
  • Elementary schools (K-6): 100 percent of the school grade is based on student achievement on annual assessments in English language arts, math, science, and social studies. Schools may also earn points for significant improvement with students who are academically behind.
  • Middle schools (7-8): 95 percent of the school grade is based on student achievement on annual assessments with the final 5 percent based on credits earned through the end of students’ 9th grade year. Schools may also earn points for significant improvement with students who are academically behind.
  • High schools (9-12): Half of the school grade is based on student achievement (25 percent on the ACT and 25 percent on End-of-Course assessments). Half of the school grade is based on graduation (25 percent on the graduation index, which rewards achievements like Advanced Placement and International Baccalaureate exam credit, and 25 percent on the cohort graduation rate, the percentage of students graduating in four years). Schools may also earn points for significant improvement with students who are academically behind.[9]

Louisiana Department of Education website, (2014)[17]

Issues

Board term limits

On November 6, 2012, St. Landry Parish voters elected by a more than three-quarters majority to instate term limits for school board members in the parish.[18]

The question appeared on the ballot as follows:

LOCAL OPTION ELECTION

Within St. Landry Parish School District: Shall the number of terms of office that any member of the school board may serve be limited to three consecutive four-year terms?[9]

Louisiana Secretary of State's website, (2014)[19]


Election results

Parishwide School District Proposition (2012)
ResultVotesPercentage
Approveda Yes 26301 77.77%
No751822.23%

Starting with terms that began on or after January 1, 2015, any member who, at the end of his or her term, has served more than two and one-half terms in the last three consecutive terms cannot be re-elected in the following term. However, they can be re-elected following the one term break. The limit does not apply retroactively to incumbents, thus allowing them to potentially serve up to 12 more years.[8][20]

2013 board bribery case

Two special elections were held for the St. Landry Parish School Board following a bribery scandal during the process of hiring a new superintendent for the district. On July 1, 2013, former District 3 representative John Miller (D), plead guilty to bribery charges and admitted to offering assistant superintendent Joseph Cassimere his vote for in the superintendent hiring decision in exchange for $5,000.[21] A special election to fill the vacancy created by Miller's resignation from the board was held on October 19, 2013. District 10 incumbent Quincy Richard (D) plead not guilty but was later convicted over the same bribery charges as Miller. A special election to fill his seat was held May 3, 2014.

Contact information

St. Landry Parish School Board seal.PNG
St. Landry Parish School Board
1013 E. Creswell Lane
P.O. Box 310
Opelousas, LA 70571-0310
Phone: 337-948-3657
Fax: 337-942-0204

See also

External links

BP-Initials-UPDATED.png
Suggest a link

References

  1. Louisiana Department of Education, "District and State Graduation Rates (2005-2006 to 2012-2013)," accessed November 24, 2014
  2. 2.0 2.1 National Center for Education Statistics, "ELSI Table Generator," accessed June 17, 2014
  3. 3.0 3.1 3.2 United States Census Bureau, "St. Landry Parish, Louisiana, Quick Facts," accessed August 15, 2014
  4. Louisiana Secretary of State, "Official Results," accessed August 15, 2014
  5. United States Census Bureau, "Frequently Asked Questions," accessed April 21, 2014
  6. 6.0 6.1 The Advocate, "St. Landry School Board selects superintendent," May 7, 2013
  7. KATC, "Cassimere elected interim St. Landry School Superintendent," March 20, 2012
  8. 8.0 8.1 8.2 Louisiana Secretary of State, "QUALIFICATIONS OF CANDIDATES," accessed September 2, 2014
  9. 9.0 9.1 9.2 9.3 9.4 Note: This text is quoted verbatim from the original source. Any inconsistencies are attributed to the original source.
  10. St. Landry Parish School Board, "Policy Manual Display And Reference Guide: Public Participation," September 2008
  11. St. Landry Parish School Board, "General Fund Budget Summary, FY 2013-2014," accessed November 25, 2013
  12. Louisiana Department of Education, "DIBELS Next," accessed November 24, 2014
  13. 13.0 13.1 13.2 Louisiana Department of Education, "Test Results," accessed November 24, 2014
  14. Louisiana Department of Education, "Annual Assessments," accessed November 24, 2014
  15. Louisiana Department of Education, "End-of-Course Tests," accessed November 24, 2014
  16. Louisiana Department of Education, "Performance Scores," accessed November 24, 2014
  17. Louisiana Department of Education, "School Letter Grades," accessed November 24, 2014
  18. Louisiana Secretary of State, "Official Results," accessed August 15, 2014
  19. Louisiana Secretary of State, "Official Election Results," accessed September 17, 2014
  20. Louisiana Secretary of State, "HOW ARE CANDIDATES ELECTED?," accessed September 2, 2014
  21. KLFY 10, "St. Landry School Board elects Jolivette to fill seat," July 12, 2013