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St. James teachers of the year recognized

MICHAEL KIRAL / L’Observateur / September 29, 1998

VACHERIE – The St. James Parish School Board took time out of itsmeeting Tuesday night at St. James Junior High School to honor its topteachers.

Three teachers, one from each educational level, were named on the parishwide level. Paulina Elementary teacher Catherine Bourgeois waschosen for the elementary school level. Debra Coleman of Lutcher JuniorHigh was chosen on the junior high level, and St. James High Schoolteacher Julie Folse was selected at the high school level.

Teachers were also selected from each school. School winners wereJoycelyn Accardo from Fifth Ward Elementary, Lynda Graham from Gramercy Elementary; Kelly Martin from Lutcher Elementary; Carol Rome from Romeville Elementary; Maxine Ambrose from Sixth Ward Elementary; Paul Bush from Vacherie Elementary and Lona Waguespack from Vacherie Primary. Brenda Gaignard was chosen from St. James Junior High and AmyVillenurve from Lutcher High School.

At the end of last school year, principals at each school were asked to submit a teacher’s name for the award. Packets were sent to the teachersduring the summer and interviews held in early September. The packetswere then sent to a regional board which reviewed them this past week and will shortly name the winners on the regional level. The state boardwill meet in late October with a ceremony held for those winners October 28.

“We want you to know that we appreciate and recognize your hard work, your dedication and your professionalism,” Mary Edwards, administrative director for Curriculum and Instruction, told the teachers. “We applaudthat. Continue to be a role model to our other teachers andcongratulations.”In other business, permission was granted by the board allowing the school system to participate in a state department grant aimed at alleviating under representation of minority students in the gifted program. St. James Parish was one of 16 parishes in the state that hadunder representation, and the funding would be used to investigate the situation and to find solutions.

Superintendent Walter Landry asked for permission from the board to have students help with filling sandbags in the case of an emergency. Parentswould fill out permission slips allowing their children to participate.

Permission was granted pending the opinion of legal counsel and the insurance consultant .

Members of the Central Office staff gave reports on the first weeks of school, reporting on what they observed on visits to the schools, programs in place and plans for the future.

Samuel Reulet, Instructional Supervisor for ninth through 12th grades, gave a report on the ACT Assessment Program. The principals andcounselors of the two parish high schools met with Service Office personnel Sept. 1 to discuss strategies for helping students increase theirACT scores. Both schools’ action plans indicate that content standardswill be stressed in the daily lessons and documented on the weekly teacher lesson plans.

ACT resources on the internet will be used in tutoring sessions and ACT preparation software is available in the computer labs. At St. James HighSchool, principal Ridgely Mitchell, teachers and volunteer parents conduct after-school ACT tutoring on Fridays. Administrators have also been intouch with Nicholls State University to plan a workshop for seniors planning to take the Oct. 24 ACT test. Seniors would pay $10 toparticipate. Reulet said he anticipates about 120 participants.

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