School Board discusses school updates, 2021-2022 calendar, teacher pay schedule and more

Finance Supervisor Lee Waskom presented a spending schedule for Consolidated District No. 9 Bond (City schools) at the School Board committee meeting on Feb. 2. The spending schedule breaks down how the $19.75 million bond is being spent (SEE DOCUMENT BELOW).

Blue is completed or substantially bid on, pink is things that are currently being scheduled and ready to be sent out to bid, and yellow is what Waskom himself is managing.

Waskom said he’s talked with the engineer and went over what’s left to be spent. Some things on the list were fixed with BRE money.

Intercom systems still need to be installed and all the carpet throughout the City schools will be replaced with DCDT tile. The Natchitoches Jr. High is the only school on the list that’s basically complete.

Somewhere between 200-300 restrooms will be gutted and updated with automatic lighting, self flush toilets and other required upgrades to bring the facilities up to code. This will help with the cost currently being spent on maintenance.

It also includes new playground equipment for varying age levels with borders filled with rubber pellets. Plans also include moving away from the chain link “prison look” fencing and use wrought iron fencing. Signs need to be installed at each school, as at least East Natchitoches is missing an identifying sign outside the school building. The hope is that working on improving schools will help instill a sense of pride in everyone.

Through this, the district will end up with some extra money that can be used to expand music and art programs like band or orchestra at the Superintendent’s discretion.

Waskom said the district also has enough money to fix six gym floors. The plan is to replace Marthaville’s completely, while some inner city schools will be sanded and refinished. Goldonna is included in this.

In other business, Board member Emile Metoyer added an item to the agenda to put out a survey regarding bi-weekly payroll for the upcoming school year. Currently teachers are paid monthly on their last working day. This can cause them to go for extended periods of time as Thanksgiving and Christmas are a bit of an issue as well as the month of May on occasion.

Eloi suggested paying teachers on the last day of the month. There was concern about teachers not receiving a check before Christmas, but Eloi mentioned that teachers would receive their tax checks on Dec. 10.

The school district achieved unitary status three years ago but the judge ordered a 3 year supervisory period, which ended Dec. 31, 2020. John Winston spoke on concerns of lack of parity with the employment practices. Out of 110 teachers at Natchitoches Central, 96 are white and only 12 are black. Same kind of statistics seem to persist at most of the schools in Natchitoches and 60% of the students are black and we’d like to see those numbers come up [number of black teachers and administrative staff members].

Other agenda site ms included:
Approve Virtual Expulsion Student Plan
Approve 2021-2022 Natchitoches School Board Calendar (SEE DOCUMENT BELOW)
Approve Ecco Ride contract extension
Approve coordinated funding request

The board voted to table a resolution ordering and calling special elections to be held in Consolidated School District No. 8 and No. 10 to authorize for the renewal of special taxes. The School Board feels the April election is too soon, so Waskom said the Board will see this come back up on the agenda sometime in the Fall.

Approve the addition of Pre-K and Kindergarten (80 students) at the Natchitoches Magnet School for the 2021-2022 school year. Board member Billy Benefield voted against this agenda item.

23 thoughts on “School Board discusses school updates, 2021-2022 calendar, teacher pay schedule and more

  1. Maybe we should start treating teaching as a job for PROFESSIONALS. A lot of people don’t look at it that way now, and there are people teaching who don’t know proper grammar, so how can they possibly teach our children to sound or write like intelligent adults. The children are being shortchanged. They are not being taught all they need to know if they are not taught that there are boundaries in life and there are consequences for poor behavior. Look how often nothing happens and bad behavior continues, then when the kids are grown, look at the statistics, check them against the numbers when parents and schools were more strict. Now students are taught so they can pass the tests needed. Maybe we are wrong in all these ‘advancements’ when maybe it enough to use discipline, bad grades, study hall, school supervised tutoring after school for subjects a child is failing. Also maybe set a standard grade a student must have in order to participate in clubs, sports, cheerleading, pep squad or fun things, instead they must take extra classes until they have a passing grade in subjects. We were not pampered growing up, we were held to certain standards. When we fell below those standards, they let us know and we lost privileges. If there are no consequences for a child who fails, bullies another child, or other actions that is not good then what motivation do they have to change. There is none, and a child losing a privilege is a powerful incentive to straighten up and do better. If a parent comes in screaming at a teacher, they should be escorted out until they can come back in and act like a human being. The child should stay in a study hall and get a 0, which would have to be made up in summer school. The school must take back control of schools, all the while teaching the parents and child the proper behavior. It adds to their understanding of who is in charge, which would be the school. When did it happen that students and their parents began to think they were in charge of schools. Education does not work that way, just as it doesn’t work when the educators are not
    trained or prepared. There has to be a meeting of the minds and people need need to know how they are expected to behave when meeting with school employees. If they are uncontrollable, they should know they will be escorted from the buildings. It’s up to us to take control and teach!

    • “They are not being taught all they need to know if they are not taught that there are boundaries in life and there are consequences for poor behavior. Look how often nothing happens and bad behavior continues, then when the kids are grown, look at the statistics, check them against the numbers when parents and schools were more strict.” MEWHP
      Maybe we should watch the Senate to see if they will hold their “child” accountable for his bad behavior which encouraged the attack on our own government and on our fellow Americans. You can’t say one thing while doing another.

          • Vicki, don’t even post a comment near me. You don’t tell the truth in your posts, you lie. You blindly follow a group, calling itself a political party, and you turn everything into something political. Weren’t you ever taught any better. Just a mouthpiece, and not a very good one for the far lefters, the ones who are causing people to leave the democratic party. Read some of the things happening in DC. Now old Joe is going to pay people not to work in essence, more than they would receive on unemployment. What would YOU call that? It is certainly not the way the USA became great. He is letting in so many illegal immigrants and going to give them so much money a day so they can live here. WHO IS GOING TO PAY FOR THAT. Got news for you, you are with your tax money. Then they will print money, and the value of our money will go down, and we will not have much to be proud of any longer. I’ve heard all this mess that Biden, Bernie, and concubine of the administration are doing will cause another civil war, and I wouldn’t doubt it. Your ideas are stupid, they will destroy freedoms in America, and they have already caused so much hate and distrust in this country, it causes grief. So stay away from me, you freedom destroyer. I don’t want your name any where near mine. Got that? Everyone in my extended family left that party, even the one that was a far leftist. The party we see now is not the Democratic Party of old.

            I want people to know I’m not changing the topic, I’m telling someone that she did. As far as I’m concerned, this part of the conversation is over. But who wants to bet that a certain woman will post political again.


  2. Give the teachers a good pay raise and good quality teachers would stay and new ones would come! Same with the police. But thanks to the Old Sniffer Louisiana won’t be able to afford to pay teachers or police anything extra.
    Gas back over 2 bucks in less than a month!

  3. This is sad.. Let’s not give the job of educating our children to the best qualified, let’s equal out black and white teachers.. So if the place i work has more ppl of color than white ppl we need to not hire anything but white ppl till the number evens out or is it ok to have more ppl of color at a job.. We need to remember remarks like this when electing new officials in the future

    • This is the same person that belives the General Welfare Clause means the Federal Government generally gives out welfare checks. He knows why there are fewer black teachers in Natchitoches Parish, the truth is that qualified black teachers who can pass the Praxis tests are in such high demand and are recruited so heavily that Natchitoches can’t compete to get them. They hire evey single one to teach that is qualified.

  4. I remember when teachers loved being teachers. They enjoyed their jobs. They didn’t have the discipline problems that they have these days. Parents were parents instead of defense attorneys confronting teachers for upsetting their child because their child would not do that. Principals backed up the teachers in dealing with problem students. Now teachers deal with a lot on nonsense and things that are more dangerous than simple nonsense every day, and I can understand why some of them don’t enjoy their jobs. Parents don’t believe that kids are kids and do stupid things, so teachers get jumped on, and principals don’t or can’t back the teacher up in disciplining a child.

    Parents do your part, teach your child manners, teach them not to be bullies or thugs. And if your child brings home a note, you might try listening to the teacher. You child might just stay out of trouble later on if you realize that kids are kids and they do make bad decisions, especially when they get with a group of their own.

    This is just my opinion, and if you don’t agree, that is your right as an American

      • You hold them responsible. Reguire the parents to come to school for a meeting everytime the kid mess up. If for nothing more then just have a 5 minute meeting. They start missing work,they will start paying more attention to what’s going with their child.

      • Randy Stelly, now that is a problem, and it happens all too often. I have often wondered why young parents, and sometimes older parents want to dress a 6 year olds in clothes like a teenager wears. I always wanted my children to enjoy each phase of their life, being a child means playing on the swings, riding a bicycle, playing with dolls or trucks, not staring at tween shows on Disney or being on iPads or whatever all day. Little ones are allowed to dress like teens, then they hear words, and start talking like teens, then the teens think they are grown and know it all, and having a baby is no big deal. Well it is a big deal, they don’t know how to raise a child, they are still children, and parents who should have taught better didn’t. A child does not need every toy that comes out, they don’t need to have every thing they want. Our role as parent is to train up a child in the way he should go. It’s not happening, and it obviously didn’t happen when these teens with babies were growing up. Movies and tv shows are too explicit. Parents aren’t taking responsibility for teaching their children right from wrong. Someone needs to be teaching kids that sex is not a game, raising a baby is not playing with dolls, and if we don’t learn soon to teach our children at home and not just leave it up to the schools, we are going to have a population to children raising children, and not knowing one thing about how to do it. That’s why we have a lot of grandparents raising their grand-babies. We have a lot of work to do in this country in order to get things right. You can’t look at a child and say don’t do that again, and expect it to do any good. Discipline does not need to be a thing of the past. Not abuse, Discipline.

  5. We have long term substitutes in classes all across this parish because people are unwilling to teach here, and the board is seriously concerned about what color of skin a certified teacher has. Geez!

    • It’s the QUALITY of the teacher! Not the color! Unbelievable! Love and dedication to students; love and dedication to teaching should not be decided by race! Get it together NPSB!

  6. We have long term substitutes in classes across the parish because we can’t find people willing to teach in our parish and the board is really worried about what color their skin is. Geez!!!

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