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2 St. James elementaries getting more teachers to lower ratio to 18 to 1

By Rebecca Burk / L’Observateur / March 28, 1998

LUTCHER – Romeville and Lutcher Elementary schools are getting more teachers to lower their student to teacher ratio to 18 to one.

When the state requested that each parish perform a study to determine which two schools were the lowest performing schools in the parish those schools were the ones named in St. James. The school system was alsorequired to submit improvement plans for the schools.

Those plans were approved 7-0 at the school board meeting Tuesday night.

The plans included spending an extra $700,000 in the hiring of seven more teachers and two assistant principals and $10,000 at each school on staff development.

Board member George Nassar asked associate superintendent Caldonia Caesar to give the board an update in a few months to let members know how the new plans were going. He wanted to know if after the plan wasimplemented for a while, whether it would be in the best interest of the schools to hire additional teachers.

Caesar said it was up to the board as to whether it wanted more teachers at the two schools.

“This plan rests with the school board members,” Caesar said. “The staterequested this of the school boards. You are the governing body in theparish.”Board member Willis Octave said he was hoping for more teachers than the requested seven. “I was hoping for a 15 to one ratio for those low-achieving schools.”Space for the additional seven teachers was also a topic of concern. Boardmember Richard Reulet asked if there was room for the extra classes at the two schools.

Nassar said that he thought there was enough room, and board president John Schexnayder suggested using portable trailers for a little while until renovations could be planned.

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