School Board Renews Superintendent’s Contract, Sets Plans for 2020/21 School Year
Written by Mark Chreene on July 7, 2020
The members of the Webster Parish School Board met Monday night. With a unanimous vote, Superintendent Johnny Rowland’s contract was extended for four more years with the same terms and conditions as before.
In making preparations for the 2020-2021 school year, adjustments were made to the 2020-2021 school calendar. Highlights of the calendar include:
August 24: Teachers report to school
September 1: Students Begin
October 5 – 9: Fall Break
November 23 – 27: Thanksgiving Break
December 21 – January 3: Christmas/New Year’s Break
March 29 – April 2: Spring Break
June 4: Students and Teachers last day of school
The Curriculum Committee met prior to the regular meeting and heard the Reconnect Webster Draft Plan 2020.
- Oreata Banks highlighted the phases. She stated that in younger grades, students should maintain static groups.
- Jeff Franklin, Transportation and Maintenance Supervisor addressed safety and sanitation as well as transportation. He stated that all students and staff will be checked for symptoms upon arrival each day. There will be wall mounted hand sanitizing stations to all classrooms. Students third grade and above and all staff will be required to wear masks in the school building and on the school bus. Masks will be provided for staff and students. classrooms will be provided tubs of wipes to disinfect desktops and other high-touch areas between groups of students. 50% bus capacity will be allowed at Phase 2 and 75% bus capacity will be allowed at Phase 3. Social distancing to the extent possible and masks will be required on the school bus. Hand sanitation will be provided for students as they board the bus.
- Melanie Jacobs spoke on hand washing and the importance of parents and staff being proactive and communicating with the school in the event of a positive test. She also said that schools would have a “well waiting” and a “sick waiting” area for students. Any student with fever of or above 100.4 will need to leave campus immediately.
- Naomi Houston stated that regardless of the phase that we are in, the Webster Parish School System will be registering students completely online.
- David Griffith addressed technology and said that the district has developed a 1-to-1 device deployment plan to loan out devices to students that are in the Webster Parish School System during the school year. Addressing internet access is in the works. All computers will have content filtering attached to cover all Children’s Internet Protection Act requirements and limit the solutions down to educational purposes only. Several options are still being explored for expanding WI-Fi out from schools to help with students that do not have internet access at home.
- Dusty Rowland spoke about academics. She said that while in Phase 2, we will be following a hybrid school setting. Hybrid learning, a combination of in-person and distance learning, will not re-create the traditional classroom learning. The district will also be prepared in the event that we are put back to Phase 1, where 100% distance learning will be provided. Phase 3 will be the traditional school setting.
While presented to the board, several parts are in still being finalized.
In other business, the following expenditures were approved:
Consolidated 3 Maintenance Fund:
- Approval for Change Order #1, Gentry & Holder Floors, Inc. to patch pine flooring, sand and finish stage floor of gymnasium at Central Elementary School in the amount of $8,250.00.
- Approval for Hercules Ag and Outdoor to sandblast, prime, and paint all metal surfaces at the baseball, softball, and football facilities at Lakeside Junior/Senior High School in the amount of $8,250.00
- Approve Creative AVL Solutions, LLC to replace the sound system at the football stadium at Lakeside Junior/Senior High School in the amount of $25,960.82.
- Approval for Hercules Ag and Outdoor to remove and replace doors on back of cafeteria and build new garbage containment at Central Elementary School in the amount of $10,325.00.
- Approval of Central Elementary School to purchase from DETEL Computer Solutions 18 laptops in the amount of $22,482.00.
District 6 ½ Cent Sales Tax Fund:
- Approval for Grider’s Glass Inc. to furnish and install glass wall and door at Webster Junior High School in the amount of $6,600.00.
Doyline Maintenance Fund:
- Approval for Anti-Pest to treat Doyline High School for termites in the amount of $2,969.00.
Springhill Maintenance Fund:
- Approval for Grider’s Glass, Inc. to furnish and install sneeze guards at Brown Upper Elementary School in the amount of $1,200.00.
- Approval to ratify payment of invoice #5452 from Stewart Electric in the amount of $1,950.00 to remove broken light pole and lights from North Webster High School Baseball field.
The board also approved:
- Permission to advertise for a Request for Proposal for Medical GAP Insurance for the district.
- The Webster Parish Parent Family Engagement in Education Policy and Grievance Policies for the 2020 – 2021 school year.
- Webster Parish Homeless Policies and Procedures for 2020 – 2021.
- Updated revisions to the IFBGA—Student Computer Access and Use.
- The following documents to be changed from Board approved documents to internal administrative regulations and procedures:
- Internet Safety Plan
- Employee Acceptable Use Agreement
- Student Acceptable Use Agreement
- Employee Internet Safety and Acceptable Use Consent Form
- Student Internet Safety and Acceptable Use Consent Form
The board approved for the appropriate funds to purchase the technology items needed for the fiscal year 2020-2021 Strong Start 2020 Program. Upon availability, the funds will be reimbursed with the Governor’s Emergency Education Relief Funds.
District 6 ½ Cent Sales Tax Fund (Minden Area) – $145,065.06
Springhill Maintenance Fund – $58,015.11
Consolidated 3 Maintenance Fund – $54,358.47
Doyline Maintenance Fund – $26,087.70
Sarepta Maintenance Fund – $23,904.63
Shongaloo Maintenance Fund – $10,260.43
Cotton Valley Maintenance Fund – $9,168.90
TOTAL – $326,860.29
The next meeting of the Webster Parish School Board will be held, Monday, August 3rd.