Savoy Receives State Excellence in Education Award

The following is a news release from the Louisiana Office of SACS CASI and AdvancED...

The Louisiana Office of SACS CASI has named Wayne Savoy, Superintendent, Calcasieu Parish School System as the Louisiana AdvancED Excellence in Education Award winner for his unparalleled leadership in promoting and advancing excellence in education.  Mr. Savoy will be recognized on April 17 at the 2010 AdvancED Conference to be held in Atlanta, Georgia.

AdvancED provides accreditation and school improvement services to 27,000 schools and districts around the world.  The Louisiana Office serves 862 accredited schools throughout the state.  The Louisiana Office of SACS CASI is honored to be able to bestow the Excellence in Education award on Mr. Wayne Savoy for his extraordinary contributions to education in the state.

Savoy is serving his fifth year as superintendent of the Calcasieu School System. Using the Baldrige-Based system of continuous improvement, Calcasieu students are tracking their data and creating individual goal plans. The system continues to improve and target areas of weakness through data analysis at every level.

Calcasieu has 33,000 students and 5,100 employees and is the fifth largest district in the State of Louisiana. The district is classified as a high poverty one with the free and reduced lunch rate of 58%, yet the Senior graduation rates have grown from 93.3% in 2006-07 to 95.4% in 2008-09.

George Swift, President and CEO of the Southwest Economic Development Alliance states, "Superintendent Wayne Savoy has worked diligently to advance workforce development in Calcasieu Parish. His efforts assure that local business and industry are provided with quality entry level employees. Savoy's Career and Technical programming has experienced tremendous growth recently that includes over 5,700 students enrolled in Career and Technical courses with over 125 different courses offered to students." Many of the courses offer national, industry-based certification.

In her letter of recommendation, Louisiana Senator Willie Mount affirms the district's vision that All children are important to us. "At the state level, Superintendent Savoy is a true advocate of students. He teleconferences regularly with the state superintendent of education to assure that students' needs are met and that there is equity of access for all students. Savoy is a team builder who has reached out to and received support from many community organizations."

Innovative, research-based programming assures that each student is provided with an education that truly prepares them for the 21st Century workforce and includes aligned district, School Board, school and student goals; graduation coaches; a New Teacher Academy; English as a Second Language; Scantron short term assessment of student progress; and Carnegie unit credit recovery. The Lake Charles-Boston Academy of Learning provides equity of access for both middle and high students in the areas of Career and Technical, The Arts, Advanced Studies and Distance Learning. Students from across the district are provided transportation to the Academy. Advanced placement classes are now offered in every high school in Calcasieu to also insure equity of access for all students who qualify. The number of students participating in AP courses has grown from 365 in 2006 to 1,158 in 2009.

A technology infused curriculum provides students with exciting, relevant learning experiences through the use of Blackboard, Promethean boards and online research. The National School Boards Association held a site visit in Calcasieu, one of four nationwide. The Technology Department regularly hosts visitors to study its strategies for professional development in technology integration. The district has its own Technology Support and Repair Center that services the approximate 20,000 computers in the district.

Calcasieu is one of the first large districts in Louisiana to achieve districtwide accreditation by SACS/CASI and AdvancED. For many years, every school in the district had achieved individual accreditation.

The Excellence in Education Award was introduced in 2009 to recognize one individual in each of the AdvancED states for his/her achievements in education. Nominees were judged on their contributions of:

  • Generating a common vision and mission for higher expectations among students, faculty, and the education community.
  • Demonstrating a record of significant and distinguished contribution to the education profession.
  • Providing a lasting positive impact on student learning.
  • Serving as a role model and mentor for students and/or future generations of educators.
  • Demonstrating significant professional contribution to accreditation and continuous improvement.