New EBR schools superintendent creates new office

Education

POSTED: Thursday, May 17, 2012 - 8:55pm

UPDATED: Friday, May 18, 2012 - 11:49am

It was straight to business for new superintendent Bernard Taylor, as he's already lobbied for a new office to be created focused on turning around low performing schools.

"Where we can actively engage community of participants in looking at how they can help us develop programs that best meets student needs going forward," Taylor said at Thursday's East Baton Rouge Parish School Board meeting.

It would be called the Office of Innovation and Reform. While not giving many exact details, Taylor said it would be focused first on those schools performing at D-level or below.

"It's also to develop and implement new programming," Taylor said. "To develop and meet diverse educational needs of the students."

The idea had wide support from board members, eager to expand it to schools all over the parish.

"We have 20 schools to focus on," said board president Barbara Freiberg. "This is a step in the right direction. One I have wanted to take."

But not all board members were in agreement. Connie Bernard and Jill Dyason were concerned about creating a new office, with so few details.

"I would like more info on how it would interact with our current position," Bernard said.

The board finally voted in favor of creating the new office. It will create two new positions, one as a deputy superintendent. Taylor said he already has a qualified candidate who has experience turning around schools in another major city.

"I am able to attract one of the most knowledgeable people in the country on innovation and reform," Taylor said.

Taylor went on to say that all other details will be finalized and presented at next month's board meeting.

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