The Natchitoches Parish School Board approved two agenda items at its special called meeting July 2.
Send Cloutierville students (grades PreK – 6) to Provencal Elementary and students (grades 7-8) to Natchitoches Jr. High.
Relocate the Cloutierville Health Based Center to Provencal Elementary/Jr. High.
Superintendent Dale Skinner said when they’d originally thought about sending all Cloutierville students to schools in Natchitoches, he had no idea Provencal had room for them. He said they’ve since toured the school and there are eight new classrooms that were built after the passing of a bond issue.
This move would eliminate the need for younger children to be bussed long routes to the City schools. The Jr. High also has room for the students in grades 7-8.
“We’ll bring at least three teachers to Provencal instead of sending them to schools in Natchitoches,” said Skinner.
Board member Emile Metoyer said he feels like there’s changes here and there every month and he feels like no one knows what’s going on in the system.
Skinner disagreed and said that he’s had people calling him that are happy with this change. He also said that while they had to increase the teacher-student ration in the classrooms at Provencal for financial reasons, they’re well within the limit of what the state allows and nowhere near the max.
Metoyer also voiced concerns about the route busses would take on Hwy. 120 E, which according to him, is closed due to flooding about 2-3 months out of the year.
Board member Russ Danzy said the busses do have to detour sometimes to get children to school, but also said work is being done on that road.
This motion died for lack of a second, but Danzy made a motion to reconsider it, which was seconded by Eugene Garner. Rhonda Guidroz and Mike Hilton were absent. The vote was six for and three against (Katrina Willis, Harry Graham and Emile Metoyer).
Before the meeting was adjourned, Metoyer questioned what will happen to the students from the Natchez area that the board recently voted to transfer from Provencal to Cloutierville. Ralph Wilson said they will put this on the agenda for their July meeting to vote on returning these students to their domiciled schools.