Jun 21, 2013 7:14 PM by Chris Welty

LPSS Changes Catching Some Off Guard

The reality of what budget cuts are going to do to Lafayette Parish schools is already being felt.

One middle school principal says she knew cuts were going to happen but never thought they would hit so hard.

Paul Breaux Middle Principal Loretta Caldwell says she knew of the budget issues, but didn't expect to lose one of her two assistant principals.

"They never told me I was loosing one, the news media has told me so. I don't know how they're going to deal with that. I've never heard officially from anyone," said Caldwell.

She says Donald Thorton, one of the two assistant principals at her school is the one in question. He was hired in November to oversee the school's discipline issues and at-risk students. Caldwell acknowledges moving forward will be a challenge and says the school needs to keep that position.

Lafayette Parish Assistant Superintendent Sandra Billideau says the school system is already over staffed and the cuts are necessary.

"Just because we aren't afforded everything we'd like to have doesn't negate our responsibility. They'll still be expected to do that work. will it be harder? I'm sure it will be, but at the same time, there are many jobs that we've had to take on more responsibility," said Billideau.

The proposed budget includes eliminating more than 40 teaching positions, 7 assistant principals and at least two counselors. These employees are not "fired," they'll have the opportunity to fill one of the nearly two hundred open positions in the district.

The budget will be up for final adoption in July.

Chris Welty



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