Natchitoches Parish School Board

Natchitoches Parish School Board

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TIME FOR IT TO STOP

Urania, LA

#1 Oct 15, 2010
I have had enough of the Natchitoches Parish School Board and the way things have been run. They have a superintendent who was handpicked by the "good ole boys" who don't want anything but someone who is going to keep things the way they are. Dr. Duke was chosen AFTER the application deadline had passed and they didn't see anyone they "wanted," so the application deadline was extended and he was thrust into the pool and thusly the position as well. He has made decisions to hire individuals based solely on what he wants to do and not the qualifications of the individuals he has hired.

For instance, Gary Brown, a very highly qualified special education instructor with ample certifications went up for a position, along with Shundrekia Roberson, another highly qualified individual for the position of special education coordinator I believe it was. However, Tammy Bell was awarded the position. The disgusting thing about this is that the interviews took place on what seems to be a Monday, yet she began boasting of her promotion the following day; keep in mind, the board meeting wouldn't be until that upcoming Thursday. Sarah McElwee was hired to work in special education with NO SPECIAL EDUCATION CERTIFICATIONS! Why? Because Duke does what he wants to do and until people wake up, the education system will continue to suffer in Natchitoches. Why is it that every single position besides Superintendent and Financial Officer or whatever it is called is filled with that of a female, it might do some good to hire a man every now and then and stop giving Derwood all this dull eye candy!

Next, there are so many schools that are suffering in the parish and the rates are ridiculous! LP Vaughn is continuously being run to the ground and yet they think that slapping Principal Cynthia Cole in the face by placing another principal, Angela Jimenez as principal of 4-8 will solve something. NEWSFLASH: Jiminez is just as incompetent! Frankie Ray Jackson is just a dumping ground for all the children that no one seems to know what to do with or have a will to reachout to. I commend Mr. Leon on his efforts to get those children in GED programs and technical skills courses. Parks is a school of growth, yet no one likes Dr. Brossette! Maybe if he would just let the school go to the ground, he'd quickly become a fan favorite by the good ole boys! East Natchitoches has absolutely NO LEADERSHIP whatsoever! The principal, Mrs. Benefield, was hired while still working on her administration degree while qualified applicants vowed for the job; makes sense doesn't it? The stories of how incompetent she is would be too long to even put into words. Let's hope that her husband no longer being a board member equates that of a hasty retirement from her! Speaking of East, parents should really take a look at www.teachlouisiana.net , you'd be surprised at the uncertified individuals teaching your children! Don't just think it exists at East however, look at all teachers that your children have or you think your children may have to encounter. It is your child's future at hand after all! Ohhhhhhhh Mr. Skinner, Mr. Skinner, Mr. Skinner; all I can think is look out Central Office, meet your next Superintendent; I told yall that www.teachlouisiana.net is a beneficial tool!

Now on to the parents: PLEASE discipline your children at home. These teachers today do not have the classroom management skills or instructional qualifications to reach out to your children. True enough, to teach a rowdy child is difficult but to turn your back on them when you are supposed to be an educator is unheard of. Now, what are the other schools in the wonderful parish of Natchitoches looking like? Anyone know?
real manager

AOL

#2 Oct 15, 2010
Big ole case of SOUR GRAPES I know who you are and thats what this is.
Finally

Urania, LA

#3 Oct 15, 2010
Finally, someone has the courage to say something, even though it was done in an anonymous forum; however, all of this is true sadly.
Teacher

Natchitoches, LA

#4 Oct 15, 2010
What was said is completely true...this system is sad...
polabo

Houston, TX

#5 Oct 15, 2010
TIME FOR IT TO STOP wrote:
I have had enough of the Natchitoches Parish School Board and the way things have been run. They have a superintendent who was handpicked by the "good ole boys" who don't want anything but someone who is going to keep things the way they are. Dr. Duke was chosen AFTER the application deadline had passed and they didn't see anyone they "wanted," so the application deadline was extended and he was thrust into the pool and thusly the position as well. He has made decisions to hire individuals based solely on what he wants to do and not the qualifications of the individuals he has hired.
For instance, Gary Brown, a very highly qualified special education instructor with ample certifications went up for a position, along with Shundrekia Roberson, another highly qualified individual for the position of special education coordinator I believe it was. However, Tammy Bell was awarded the position. The disgusting thing about this is that the interviews took place on what seems to be a Monday, yet she began boasting of her promotion the following day; keep in mind, the board meeting wouldn't be until that upcoming Thursday. Sarah McElwee was hired to work in special education with NO SPECIAL EDUCATION CERTIFICATIONS! Why? Because Duke does what he wants to do and until people wake up, the education system will continue to suffer in Natchitoches. Why is it that every single position besides Superintendent and Financial Officer or whatever it is called is filled with that of a female, it might do some good to hire a man every now and then and stop giving Derwood all this dull eye candy!
Next, there are so many schools that are suffering in the parish and the rates are ridiculous! LP Vaughn is continuously being run to the ground and yet they think that slapping Principal Cynthia Cole in the face by placing another principal, Angela Jimenez as principal of 4-8 will solve something. NEWSFLASH: Jiminez is just as incompetent! Frankie Ray Jackson is just a dumping ground for all the children that no one seems to know what to do with or have a will to reachout to. I commend Mr. Leon on his efforts to get those children in GED programs and technical skills courses. Parks is a school of growth, yet no one likes Dr. Brossette! Maybe if he would just let the school go to the ground, he'd quickly become a fan favorite by the good ole boys! East Natchitoches has absolutely NO LEADERSHIP whatsoever! The principal, Mrs. Benefield, was hired while still working on her administration degree while qualified applicants vowed for the job; makes sense doesn't it? The stories of how incompetent she is would be too long to even put into words. Let's hope that her husband no longer being a board member equates that of a hasty retirement from her! Speaking of East, parents should really take a look at www.teachlouisiana.net , you'd be surprised at the uncertified individuals teaching your children! Don't just think it exists at East however, look at all teachers that your children have or you think your children may have to encounter. It is your child's future at hand after all! Ohhhhhhhh Mr. Skinner, Mr. Skinner, Mr. Skinner; all I can think is look out Central Office, meet your next Superintendent; I told yall that www.teachlouisiana.net is a beneficial tool!
Now on to the parents: PLEASE discipline your children at home. These teachers today do not have the classroom management skills or instructional qualifications to reach out to your children. True enough, to teach a rowdy child is difficult but to turn your back on them when you are supposed to be an educator is unheard of. Now, what are the other schools in the wonderful parish of Natchitoches looking like? Anyone know?
Its worst than even what you printed--real sad and sorry situation--
wingnaprayer

Natchitoches, LA

#6 Oct 15, 2010
Well, let's hope that the folks who were voted onto the school board will be able to help move the board in a more cohesive and cooperative direction for our KIDS and not for the perks. Let's hear it for the school board members who voted NOT to attend this year's annual meeting in, of all places, Hawaii, which would have cost $50K. Finally, hopefully, some common sense is about to be introduced to the school board. By the way, if there was a school board race in your district? Did you go vote? If you didn't, don't kvetch about it.
shame on us

United States

#7 Oct 15, 2010
wingnaprayer wrote:
Well, let's hope that the folks who were voted onto the school board will be able to help move the board in a more cohesive and cooperative direction for our KIDS and not for the perks. Let's hear it for the school board members who voted NOT to attend this year's annual meeting in, of all places, Hawaii, which would have cost $50K. Finally, hopefully, some common sense is about to be introduced to the school board. By the way, if there was a school board race in your district? Did you go vote? If you didn't, don't kvetch about it.
The saddest of all is the low turnout of voters in district 7. They re-elected an old fart who has been in the position for over 40 years. This guy is at best stupid about education. Goldonna block voted to control the process inspite of the fact that the district is in sad shape. They had a very qualified candidate against Walker but they were so caught up in their own self centered interest to put their own children's interest first. Goldonna is a school that is 40 years out of the main stream of education and needs to be closed. I'm sure our founding fathers had no idea that the election process would turn out to be such a sham. I apologize and am ashamed of how the election process turned out in my district (7).
Teacher

Natchitoches, LA

#8 Oct 15, 2010
wingnaprayer wrote:
Well, let's hope that the folks who were voted onto the school board will be able to help move the board in a more cohesive and cooperative direction for our KIDS and not for the perks. Let's hear it for the school board members who voted NOT to attend this year's annual meeting in, of all places, Hawaii, which would have cost $50K. Finally, hopefully, some common sense is about to be introduced to the school board. By the way, if there was a school board race in your district? Did you go vote? If you didn't, don't kvetch about it.
I must have missed this meeting....can you tell me more about the national meeting? Who voted to attend? Hopefully none of them did...
grapes of wrath

United States

#9 Oct 15, 2010
real manager wrote:
Big ole case of SOUR GRAPES I know who you are and thats what this is.
I know who you are as well! You are the person who justifys poor performance as "sour grapes" while you continually destroy the system. We are all sick of your attitude of pissing off our children's education. Find another job worthy of your lack of skills.
Ivory

Russellville, AR

#10 Oct 15, 2010
shame on us wrote:
<quoted text>
The saddest of all is the low turnout of voters in district 7. They re-elected an old fart who has been in the position for over 40 years. This guy is at best stupid about education. Goldonna block voted to control the process inspite of the fact that the district is in sad shape. They had a very qualified candidate against Walker but they were so caught up in their own self centered interest to put their own children's interest first. Goldonna is a school that is 40 years out of the main stream of education and needs to be closed. I'm sure our founding fathers had no idea that the election process would turn out to be such a sham. I apologize and am ashamed of how the election process turned out in my district (7).
I definitely would have voted for the other guy had I been able to vote in this particular district.
Parent

Haughton, LA

#11 Oct 15, 2010
At least we have some new blood coming. You are so wrong about Sarah McElwee. She is an outstanding teacher. She has had many special education students in her classrooms and has made a huge difference in their lives. She truly cares about the students. She has experience and will do an excellent job. Special education is terrible in this parish. When Stanley Lewis was supervisor there was much progress. Cynthia Johnson Winston caused the decline. The special education department needs a strong, caring, and dynamic supervisor who will make positive changes and put the children's interests first. Great teachers can make a tremendous difference. They need to get rid of the babysitters.
Teacher2

Natchitoches, LA

#12 Oct 15, 2010
Parent wrote:
At least we have some new blood coming. You are so wrong about Sarah McElwee. She is an outstanding teacher. She has had many special education students in her classrooms and has made a huge difference in their lives. She truly cares about the students. She has experience and will do an excellent job.
She was a teacher? Hmmm...and here I thought she was a social worker! I don't know the woman personally, but she does seem really sweet from what I've heard. Also, I know a lot of highly qualified, FANTASTIC special education professionals in the parish. Let's not forget the good teachers...regular and special ed. We all seem to focus on this negativity. Why not show a little praise for what is GOOD here? Surely you've seen the good! I see a lot of it...all over the parish. Everyone reading these negative posts would be surprised at how HARD most teachers and professionals in our children's educational life work. I am a teacher, and I am proud of the work my fellow colleagues and I do for the kiddos. I LOVE my job!!!!!
TIME FOR IT TO STOP

Shreveport, LA

#13 Oct 16, 2010
Teacher2 wrote:
<quoted text>
She was a teacher? Hmmm...and here I thought she was a social worker! I don't know the woman personally, but she does seem really sweet from what I've heard. Also, I know a lot of highly qualified, FANTASTIC special education professionals in the parish. Let's not forget the good teachers...regular and special ed. We all seem to focus on this negativity. Why not show a little praise for what is GOOD here? Surely you've seen the good! I see a lot of it...all over the parish. Everyone reading these negative posts would be surprised at how HARD most teachers and professionals in our children's educational life work. I am a teacher, and I am proud of the work my fellow colleagues and I do for the kiddos. I LOVE my job!!!!!
Indeed, a social worker she was and still has only those credentials to be.

This was not intended to bash the educators in the system that actually have a concern for the students and love their job but aimed at the leadership that does not have the competence or the abilities to choose effective individuals to help teachers as yourself who strive to make a difference in the lives of the children they encounter. Not all of the teachers in the parish are horrible, yet fact of the matter is that there are still those who get away with doing nothing and even more so appauling, those that are not certified and not even working on a certification.
TIME FOR IT TO STOP

Shreveport, LA

#14 Oct 16, 2010
Parent wrote:
At least we have some new blood coming. You are so wrong about Sarah McElwee. She is an outstanding teacher. She has had many special education students in her classrooms and has made a huge difference in their lives. She truly cares about the students. She has experience and will do an excellent job. Special education is terrible in this parish. When Stanley Lewis was supervisor there was much progress. Cynthia Johnson Winston caused the decline. The special education department needs a strong, caring, and dynamic supervisor who will make positive changes and put the children's interests first. Great teachers can make a tremendous difference. They need to get rid of the babysitters.
She is not a teacher! She is a SOCIAL WORKER that was allowed to "teach" and I use that term loosely. She may have had special education children in her room that she SHOULD NOT have had; however, that does not make one suitable to work in special education; hence the reason that there are courses directed towards special education, alternate certification programs and content portions on the PRAXIS as well devoted to special education. She chose to do social work and having done so, she should not have even felt comfortable accepting the gimme that Duke gave to her. Lewis was everything you said and much more than time has to give him credentials of being. Cynthia Winston, as Cheryl Johnson is now, faced the challenge of having to supervise individuals who DO NOT want to work but instead want to formulate cliques and get over easy, not keeping that which is important, the children in mind. Cheryl Johnson has worked to get special education back out of the trouble, despite the lack of cooperation that she has received from her staff. Hopefully, before long, they all will follow suit and do as Diana Laroux and just QUIT! If you don't want to work and do what needs to be done, GO HOME!

Speaking of Laroux, where is that daugther-in-law of hers who cannot write an IEP, lesson plan or do anything that even resembles the duties of a school teacher anyway?

It is not the supervisor but the individuals she supervises! If Duke would allow her to replace and/or hire some devoted individuals, things would be different but there is only so much one can do when working under a totalitarinism minded Superintendent who doesn't know his left from his right most of the time, nevertheless how to make a decision that will be beneficial other than to him wanting to have women to look at. Talk about one thinking with their little head as opposed to their brain!
LSU

Urania, LA

#15 Oct 16, 2010
they need to get rid of all those dead beat teachers
Hmmmm

Shreveport, LA

#16 Oct 16, 2010
TIME FOR IT TO STOP wrote:
<quoted text>
Indeed, a social worker she was and still has only those credentials to be.
This was not intended to bash the educators in the system that actually have a concern for the students and love their job but aimed at the leadership that does not have the competence or the abilities to choose effective individuals to help teachers as yourself who strive to make a difference in the lives of the children they encounter. Not all of the teachers in the parish are horrible, yet fact of the matter is that there are still those who get away with doing nothing and even more so appauling, those that are not certified and not even working on a certification.

Sarah IS a certified teacher!!! If you would take the time to check her and other teachers' certificates at www.teachlouisiana.net you would know what you are talking about.
Laney

Natchitoches, LA

#17 Oct 16, 2010
Hmmmm wrote:
<quoted text>
Sarah IS a certified teacher!!! If you would take the time to check her and other teachers' certificates at www.teachlouisiana.net you would know what you are talking about.
What do I gather from this site? Sarah McElwee: Certified Teacher-no. Certified school Social Worker-absolutely!

She is not certified to teach...never was.

Regardless, she is doing a job right now with adequate credentials. IEPs are created, usually, with a multidisciplinary team. Any psychologist, social worker, ed. diagnostian, speech therapist, occupational therapist, special ed. teacher, etc. would be qualified to hold the job she currently has at the moment. Let's hope she does a good job.
Hmmmm

Shreveport, LA

#18 Oct 16, 2010
Laney wrote:
<quoted text>
What do I gather from this site? Sarah McElwee: Certified Teacher-no. Certified school Social Worker-absolutely!
She is not certified to teach...never was.
Regardless, she is doing a job right now with adequate credentials. IEPs are created, usually, with a multidisciplinary team. Any psychologist, social worker, ed. diagnostian, speech therapist, occupational therapist,
special ed. teacher, etc. would be qualified to hold the job she currently has at the moment. Let's hope she does a good job.
CERTIFIED TEACHER....YES!!!!
B 069534 Issued:5/21/1992
Valid For: 5/21/1992 - Life, Valid
Also-
AN 460897 Issued:12/7/2006
Valid For: 12/7/2006 - Life, Valid
(08) VALID PROVIDED THE HOLDER MAINTAINS CURRENT LICENSURE AS A SOCIAL WORKER, 12/7/2006
(705) SUPERVISOR OF CHILD WELFARE & ATTENDANCE AND/OR VISITING TEACHER, 12/7/2006
(14) LICENSURE IN COMPLIANCE WITH ACT 706 OF THE 1972 LEGISLATURE, 12/7/2006
SUPERVISOR OF CHILD WELFARE & ATTENDANCE AND/OR VISITING TEACHER - 12/7/2006

AND

AN 478495 Issued:8/12/2008
Valid For: 8/12/2008 - Life, Valid
(17) GRADUATE SOCIAL WORK CERTIFICATE IN ACCORDANCE WITH R.S. 37:2701 ET.SEQ., 8/12/2008
(08) VALID PROVIDED THE HOLDER MAINTAINS CURRENT LICENSURE AS A SOCIAL WORKER, 8/12/2008
(736) QUALIFIED SCHOOL SOCIAL WORKER, 8/12/2008
By the Louisiana Department of Education, based upon the following:
B.S., LOUISIANA STATE UNIVERSITY, 1978
M.S.W., LOUISIANA STATE UNIVERSITY, 2003
ELIGIBILITY: The holder of this certificate is eligible for the following area(s) and/or terms:
GRADUATE SOCIAL WORK CERTIFICATE IN ACCORDANCE WITH R.S. 37:2701 ET.SEQ.- 8/12/2008
VALID PROVIDED THE HOLDER MAINTAINS CURRENT LICENSURE AS A SOCIAL WORKER - 8/12/2008
QUALIFIED SCHOOL SOCIAL WORKER - 8/12/2008

AND
real manager

AOL

#19 Oct 16, 2010
TIME FOR IT TO STOP wrote:
<quoted text>
She is not a teacher! She is a SOCIAL WORKER that was allowed to "teach" and I use that term loosely. She may have had special education children in her room that she SHOULD NOT have had; however, that does not make one suitable to work in special education; hence the reason that there are courses directed towards special education, alternate certification programs and content portions on the PRAXIS as well devoted to special education. She chose to do social work and having done so, she should not have even felt comfortable accepting the gimme that Duke gave to her. Lewis was everything you said and much more than time has to give him credentials of being. Cynthia Winston, as Cheryl Johnson is now, faced the challenge of having to supervise individuals who DO NOT want to work but instead want to formulate cliques and get over easy, not keeping that which is important, the children in mind. Cheryl Johnson has worked to get special education back out of the trouble, despite the lack of cooperation that she has received from her staff. Hopefully, before long, they all will follow suit and do as Diana Laroux and just QUIT! If you don't want to work and do what needs to be done, GO HOME!
Speaking of Laroux, where is that daugther-in-law of hers who cannot write an IEP, lesson plan or do anything that even resembles the duties of a school teacher anyway?
It is not the supervisor but the individuals she supervises! If Duke would allow her to replace and/or hire some devoted individuals, things would be different but there is only so much one can do when working under a totalitarinism minded Superintendent who doesn't know his left from his right most of the time, nevertheless how to make a decision that will be beneficial other than to him wanting to have women to look at. Talk about one thinking with their little head as opposed to their brain!
Well all of those people you talk about with all of the cridentials and alternate certification programs under their belts are a part of the system and have been part of the system and as we all know the system is still not working and has never worked. Now things are changing and you don't like it because YOUR little cliques are not running the show.SOUR GRAPES..........
Laney

Natchitoches, LA

#20 Oct 16, 2010
Hmmmm wrote:
<quoted text>
CERTIFIED TEACHER....YES!!!!
B 069534 Issued:5/21/1992
Valid For: 5/21/1992 - Life, Valid
Also-
AN 460897 Issued:12/7/2006
Valid For: 12/7/2006 - Life, Valid
(08) VALID PROVIDED THE HOLDER MAINTAINS CURRENT LICENSURE AS A SOCIAL WORKER, 12/7/2006
(705) SUPERVISOR OF CHILD WELFARE & ATTENDANCE AND/OR VISITING TEACHER, 12/7/2006
(14) LICENSURE IN COMPLIANCE WITH ACT 706 OF THE 1972 LEGISLATURE, 12/7/2006
SUPERVISOR OF CHILD WELFARE & ATTENDANCE AND/OR VISITING TEACHER - 12/7/2006
AND
AN 478495 Issued:8/12/2008
Valid For: 8/12/2008 - Life, Valid
(17) GRADUATE SOCIAL WORK CERTIFICATE IN ACCORDANCE WITH R.S. 37:2701 ET.SEQ., 8/12/2008
(08) VALID PROVIDED THE HOLDER MAINTAINS CURRENT LICENSURE AS A SOCIAL WORKER, 8/12/2008
(736) QUALIFIED SCHOOL SOCIAL WORKER, 8/12/2008
By the Louisiana Department of Education, based upon the following:
B.S., LOUISIANA STATE UNIVERSITY, 1978
M.S.W., LOUISIANA STATE UNIVERSITY, 2003
ELIGIBILITY: The holder of this certificate is eligible for the following area(s) and/or terms:
GRADUATE SOCIAL WORK CERTIFICATE IN ACCORDANCE WITH R.S. 37:2701 ET.SEQ.- 8/12/2008
VALID PROVIDED THE HOLDER MAINTAINS CURRENT LICENSURE AS A SOCIAL WORKER - 8/12/2008
QUALIFIED SCHOOL SOCIAL WORKER - 8/12/2008
AND
Oh, I thought we were talking about special education certification. For some reason, I thought someone said she was a special education teacher, but I see now that they only said she had special kids in her classrooms. I stand corrected ;-)

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