Education Executive - Summer 2012 - (Page 80)
CENTRAL COMMUNITY SCHOOL DISTRICT
New District, New Ideas
Central Community School District rejected traditional designs for its new schools in favor of an approach that will yield the best student outcomes.
ocated in East Baton Rouge Parish, Central City is the 12th-largest municipality in Louisiana, as well as the state’s newest city. Its citizens voted to incorporate in April 2005 – against the wishes of the parish government – and education has been among its core focuses from the start. Former Central High School Principal Sheldon “Mac” Watts was elected the city’s first mayor with 86 percent of the vote, and in November 2006, Louisiana voters passed a constitutional amendment authorizing the creation of the Central Community School District. This allowed the citizens of Central City to govern their own public school system, and the state appointed Mike Faulk as the superintendent, who’s had a career in education since the 1970s. It hasn’t even been a decade since the city and school district were established, but already Central is the sixth-highestperforming school district in the state and its third grade performs the highest among all of Louisiana’s public schools. Additionally, in the past year, its third, fourth, fifth, sixth, seventh and eighth grade levels all made improvements in testing results.
“This is all due to the quality teachers we have,” Faulk explains. “We also have to give credit to the high expectations in our schools and throughout the community. “When we formed our own district about five years ago, we became independent from the rest of Baton Rouge, but we were still a public school system,” he continues. “We wanted control over the direction the system was going and we listened to the community. There also has been a lot of community involvement – everyone wants to see this be a successful endeavor.”
Facilities that Engage
Central consists of five schools: Bellingrath Hills Elementary (pre-K through first grade), Tanglewood Elementary (grades two and three), Central Intermediate (grades four and five), Central Middle School (grades six through eight) and Central High School (grades nine through 12). When the district was established, enrollments were increasing but the school buildings were aging rapidly, so Central began by bringing in temporary classrooms. A few years ago, Central was able
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Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Education Executive - Summer 2012
Education Executive - Summer 2012
Can't Live Without It
Broadening the Student Experience
Upgrading Facilities on Tight Budgets
Haylor, Freyer & Coon ◆ N.Y.
Anne Arundel Community College ◆ MD
Humber College ◆ Ont.
Grove City College ◆ PA
Broome Community College ◆ N.Y.
Coastal Carolina University ◆ S.C.
Cuyahoga Community College ◆ Ohio
Ottawa University ◆ Kan.
Brazosport College ◆ Texas
Idaho State University ◆ Idaho
Hillsborough Community College ◆ Fla.
Post University ◆ Conn.
Union College ◆ N.Y.
University of New Mexico ◆ N.M.
Naperville School District 203 ◆ Ill.
Santa Barbara Unified School District ◆ Calif.
Acadia Parish School Board ◆ LA
Mounds View Public Schools ◆ Minn.
Central Community School District ◆ LA
Chelmsford Public Schools ◆ Mass.
Dennis-Yarmouth Regional School District ◆ Mass.
86elmira City Schools ◆ N.Y.
Glendora Usd ◆ Calif.
Harnett County Schools ◆ N.C.
Holmes County School District ◆ Miss.
Jefferson Parish Public School System ◆ LA
Harlandale Independent School District ◆ Texas
Kyrene School District ◆ Ariz.
Fort Huachuca Accommodation Schools #00 ◆ Ariz.
Kenosha Unified School District ◆ Wis.
Los Fresnos Consolidated Independent School District ◆ Texas
Maryland School for the Deaf ◆ MD
Mclean County District Unit No. 5 ◆ Ill.
Williamson County Schools ◆ Tenn.
Mesa Public Schools ◆ Ariz.
Palmdale School District ◆ Calif.
Plain Local School District ◆ Ohio
St. Martin Parish Schools ◆ LA
Oak Harbor School District ◆ Wash.
Anne Arundel County Public Schools ◆ MD
Vancouver Island University ◆ B.C.
Brandon School Division ◆ MB
Dalhousie University ◆ N.S.
Peace River School Division ◆ AB
University of Sudbury ◆ Ont.
Sandy Spring Friends School
The Pomfret School ◆ Conn.
Riverside Military Academy ◆ GA
The Thacher School ◆ Calif.
Education Executive - Summer 2012