Beauregard Parish scores high in graduation rates

By Crystal Price - bio | email

LAKE CHARLES, LA (KPLC) - It's no surprise that Beauregard Parish Schools scored high in this year's state performance report card.

Since the beginning of the accountability system, Beauregard parish has managed to score in the top ten parishes every time.

This year in graduation rates the parish came out on top in the five-parish region and second in the entire state.

Mann says the secret to keeping graduation rates high starts with heavily enforcing student attendance.

"If students are having trouble coming to school, then the District Attorney's office helps us out," says Mann.

District Attorney David Burton does this through the FINS (Families In Need of Service) program.

"If a child has 5 unexcused absences, their case is referred to the District Attorney's office," says Burton. "The family then receives a letter from me, emphasizing the importance of school attendance."

Burton says the program's intention is not to send students to court, but to keep them out of the courtroom.

"Our ultimate goal is to see to that these children attend school and successfully graduate," says Burton. "We don't want them to become just another statistic."

In addition to the FINS program, Mann also feels that parent and community involvement also plays a key role in the graduation rates.

"I would have to say it's the teamwork we have across the parish," says Mann. "Our parents are tremendously supportive in so many ways. Every business throughout the parish is involved as a partner in education."

Mann says the real secret to a successful graduation rate lies within the students.

"Look to the students, see what their needs are and do your very best in meeting those needs," says Mann. "It will amaze you at the work and the performance they can provide for themselves as they prepare for the future."

If you would like to see how your school's graduation rates came out, click on "Parish Graduation Rates" to the right.

(Copyright 2009 KPLC-TV. All rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)