On Monday, Evangeline Parish Schoolboard President Darwin Lazard conducted a Basile Schools Showcase of their new ActivPanels with the assistance of Basile High School Principal Helana Francois and W. W. Stewart Elementary Principal Danielle Young. Each classroom of the schools are equipped with a Promethean Titanium ActivPanel and every teacher attended a 2-hour webinar to learn panel basics and how ot use the features of the devices. Additionally, they have full access to online training anytime, allowing them to explore the devices and learn at their own paces.
In Ms. Krystle Smith’s 7th Grade math classroom, the class engaged in a Jeopardy-style game consisting of questions related to their current lessons. Once students were divided into groups, a question was selected for them to work out and solve together using the methods they learn in class. When group members agreed on an answer, they “buzzed in” their answer and sent one member to work out the problem on the board. In actuality, the game is an educational PowerPoint designed by Ms. Krystal Smith to engage the class in a fun and interactive way. Because the ActivPanel works as a computer, she and other teachers can also share their screens with students both in class and at home using their ChromeBooks. Students can also screen share their projects from wherever they are connected, allowing teachers to monitor their class at all times whether online or in-person.
Ms. Sadie Guillory’s 5th Grade math class worked together to answer review questions using the panel. Using PAX methods, they took turns as student leader and helped each other correct their answers using the many functions and features of the ActivPanel. They said that being able to work together and not go one at a time makes for a more engaging classroom experience. They agreed that having a board with only one multipurpose pen is easier than their previous device, which had multiple styluses and erasers that often got misplaced. Additionally, the screen operates without a projector, making it much clearer even for students in the back of the room.
Even the youngest students benefit from the ActivPanel’s many features, like Ms. Norma Lebleu’s Kindergarten class, who demonstrated for the Superintendent how they can learn to sound out words together while they take turns arranging letters on the board to form words. They especially enjoy the clearer sound system, which allows them to sing along to their educational songs and listen to stories.
Ms. Sadie Lebleu’s 3rd Grade ELA class wrapped up the day by saying that they hope every classroom and student in Evangeline Parish can get their own ActivPanel. They said that the device is smoother than their previous board, since it updates and never goes out-of-date. Mr. Lazard said that there are currently 157 boards around Evangeline Parish, and even though Basile is currently the only school with ActivPanels in every classroom, he hopes to eventually get one in every classroom in Evangeline Parish.
EVANGELINE PARISH SCHOOL BOARD
WEDNESDAY, 19 MAY 2021
At Wednesday’s meeting of the Evangeline Parish School Board, board members received an update on the LSUE dual enrollment partnership. Since the 2018-19 school year, over 3500 college credits have been earned by our parish students, and over 2500 of those credits were earned at LSUE.
LSUE Chancellor Dr. Nancee Sorensen told board members that while many colleges experienced a decrease in enrollment during the pandemic last year, LSUE had an increase. She explained that dual-enrollment for high school students allows them to earn college credits at low or free cost.
Vice Chancellor of Academic Affairs Dr. John Hamlin explained that students have the option to take online classes if students cannot arrange transportation or fit in-person dual-enrollment classes into their schedule. Additionally, the program is working on becoming more workforce-focused, not just on academic degrees but also on preparing students who want to enter the workforce immediately upon graduating high school.
The school board was proud to announce that they are investing $4,600,000 into the betterment of our parish schools. They stressed that these are their own funds and that they are not asking for additional taxes from Evangeline Parish citizens.
The school board would like to congratulate all of our parish high school graduates for the 2020-21 school year.
TUESDAY, MAY 3, 2021
At Tuesday’s meeting of the Evangeline Parish Police Jury, the jury approved a resolution to take preliminary approval relative to the issuance, sale, and delivery of sales tax refunding bonds, not to exceed $13,750,000. In this case, refunding refers more to refinancing. John Mayeaux explained to the board that Tuesday’s meeting and resolution do not obligate them to anything and only means that they can now draw up numbers for the refunding bonds. If the final prices indicate a loss or too small of savings, the Police Jury does not have to go through with them. If they choose to withdraw, there will be no financial loss, save for the $100 application fee. Mayeaux stressed that these bonds are not bringing in new finances, nor do they extend the repayment period. The Jury will be issued only the amount of bonds necessary to pay off the old ones, and savings will be calculated in terms of lowered interest rates.
The jury also carried a motion to approve continuing to levy for 10 years mills property taxes in Voting Districts 2, 3, and 7 in order to maintain public cemeteries. The taxes are not new but are renewals for taxes that have existed for several years.
Public Works Director Chester Granger asked the Jury for approval to use the health unit budget to replace several big-ticket items for our parish sewer system. He said that the sewer system has multiple major issues throughout the parish, but that they are working with an almost $0 budget. The motion carried with approval for 1 submersible grinder pump for Wyble and 1 large submersible for Country Estate. Granger also assured the public that the bridges on MacArthur and Bieber are still pending repair; the delay was only due to last week’s severe weather.