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|Board approves $1 million for technology|
The Concordia Parish School Board agreed to spend $1 million over three years for a technology enhancement project to purchase computers, i-pods and other materials for classrooms parishwide.
The decision was made during the board's regular monthly meeting Thursday night.
Supt. Dr. Paul Nelson said the project coincides with a state program that also requires students be tested online.
He said funding for the project will come through parish sales tax funds.
Nelson said the project will begin with the installation of 427 new computers by February in grades kindergarten through fifth and in the computer labs at Ferriday High and Vidalia High.
He said he hopes to have 600 new computers and i-pods in place by August.
Nelson outlined a three-year plan in which $300,000 would be spent during the present school year, $400,000 for the 2013-14 school year and $300,000 for 2014-15.
"If we do it and others (school systems) don't, will we get refunded?" Board president Gary Parnham asked.
Nelson said he did not think most parishes would be able to finance the upgrades and that the state may ultimately "be forced to back off" the program.
The board also recognized four schools for improvement on the District Performance Score.
Vidalia High and Monterey High were honored for earning school ratings of "A".
"Our staff and students made this happen," said Vidalia High Principal Rick Brown.
Monterey Principal John Bostic said parents were to be credited, too.
Ferriday High Principal James Davis said his school's gain of 15 points on its school performance score was "a blessing."
"It's a difficult task," he said, noting that many students lack parental involvement in their education. "We are doing the best for our children, but to be successful, parents are going to have to play a roll."
Vidalia Upper was recognized for being a "Top Gain" school in exceeding its growth target.
Principal Darla Johnston said the growth was attributed to a "collective effort" by the entire school.
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