Apr 1, 2013 11:21 PM by Steven Albritton

Principals Fighting Back, Trying to Put Focus Back In Classroom

Lafayette school principals and community leaders are taking a stand for progress in schools. The school system has been in the news lately for issues like teachers leaving the classroom and, what some say, is a lack of discipline in the classroom. Monday, a group got together in hopes of putting the focus back in the classroom. Northside High School Principal Melinda Voorhies called a special meeting in support of Dr. Pat Cooper and his "Turnaround Plan."

The plan has sweeping reforms to increase the district's performance score with the Department Of Education. They hope to go from its "C" rating in 2011 to an "A" rating over a period of six years. In 2012, the school system raised its score to a "B."

"We have 17 schools that are D or F schools. That plan is going to take us to a place in 6 years where we will be an A district, one of the highest performing districts in the state, and we will not have anymore schools that are D or F schools," Director of the Cajundome Greg Davis said. He was one of many economic representatives at the meeting.

The crowd was overwhelmingly supportive of Cooper's "Turnaround plan."

"The thing that the turnaround plan does by giving us "Sight Based management," the ability to make those decisions, is we're able to create plans for our particular kids," Carencro High School Principal Ken Roebuck said.

School board members were not invited to the meeting but after finding out about it Mark Babineaux, Tehmi Chaisson and Greg Awbrey decided to attend. Awbrey says, he supports anything that will help the system, but right now the issue is money.

"We have several community groups that are feeling that the board is not supportive of the plan. It's not the plan. It's a matter of making it to the finish line with the plan and being able to afford it as a school system," Awbrey said.



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