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School board reviews academic performance

BY BRIAN BESCH
Enterprise staff
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LIVINGSTON -- Janan Moore presented the Texas Academic Performance Report, which showed Livingston schools just behind the state average in a few areas. Livingston is also a bit behind the state average in sending students to college.

The problem has been addressed, as students are receiving additional help in subjects they have fallen behind. Students will also receive extra education when starting school, as the pre-K classes have gone to all day.

"I know that change is difficult and some of the initiatives we are engaging in are challenging, but when you look at the data, you can't argue with it," Livingston Superintendent Dr. Brent Hawkins said. "It is the right thing to do. Our kids deserve to be at or above the state average. The kids a graduate from Livingston High School have the opportunity to graduate with 60 college hours. We have a lot of work to do and it's not going to be easy. It goes back to the curriculum audit that we had. We know what the problems are. Are we willing to pay the price and make the changes?"

The Roy O. Martin Lumber Company has begun a program at Corrigan-Camden High with plans that will soon extend to Livingston, Diboll and Jasper.

The name of the program is "woodworks" and is an educational opportunity for students to get a job interview after graduation. The program has been in place for nearly a decade in Louisiana, with around 10 schools participating.

A 30-week lesson will expose students to forestry, safety, employability skills, tools and equipment, product development and basic math. The students that complete the course will receive a certificate. Right now, 30 percent of employees at the plants are going through the program.

In other business, Kip Robins discussed phone needs for the district. The technology department has taken over the phone system. In the past, the district received discounted rates for the phones through E-Rate, however, those savings will be cut in the future.
Robbins said the district could save money by using technology available instead of all the phone lines that exist today. The school currently has

One solution is to install an in-house system where it is managed by the school. The cost savings would be around 60-75 percent. Another solution would be using digital lines, decreasing the number of phone lines, with a cost savings of around 25 percent. The district currently has 208 phone lines.