CPSB votes against declaring unitary status - KPLC 7 News, Lake Charles, Louisiana

CPSB votes against declaring unitary status

After a heated discussion about the issue of race in Calcasieu Parish Schools, the school board voted against declaring unitary status at a special called meeting Tuesday night.

Board member Bill Jongbloed called the special meeting in an effort to move Calcasieu Parish towards declaring unitary status. "I asked for this 4 years ago, and it took 4 years to get it to this point," said Jongbloed. "We've been kicking this can down the road way too long. I felt like we needed to do something one way or another."

A school district has reached unitary status when the district has fully eliminated the old racially segregated dual system.

Parents and school officials voiced their concerns at Tuesday night's meeting. The CPSB board's attorney Gerard Caswell discussed where exactly he felt Calcasieu Parish stood as far as unitary status.

"As best as I can determine, this system has been partially declared unitary with regard to everything except for 'student assignment' in Ward 3," said Caswell.

If the school board had decided to seek unitary status they would have gone before federal court. The court would then determine whether or not Calcasieu Parish meets the requirements of a unitary district.

CPSB member Bill Jongbloed feels Calcasieu Parish is well integrated and ready to be declared a unitary district.

"This has nothing to do with race because our schools are all integrated," said Jongbloed. "I want the schools to stay integrated. It has everything to do with extreme overcrowding."

According to the attendance department, 451 students that attend Barbe High School are currently attending school out of district. If the students did attend where they actually live, then 253 students would be sent to LaGrange High School and 201 would be sent to Washington Marion High School.

"I think that if everyone went back to their schools, the scores would go up and we wouldn't have low performing schools," said R. L. Webb, a CPSB member.

Other board members disagree, however. Board member Mack Delafosse said it should be about equal opportunity for the students.

"Don't believe for one minute that we love sending our kids to another school away from our neighborhoods," said Mack Delafosse, a CPSB member. "All we want is for our kids to have the same opportunity for education as everybody else that's what this is about."

Tuesday night's motion to declare unitary status failed with a vote of 6 to 8. Jongbloed said this is the last time he plans to bring the issue to the table.

Copyright 2011 KPLC. All rights reserved.

  • More Local NewsNewsMore>>

  • Groundbreaking for new Westlake Apartments

    Groundbreaking for new Westlake Apartments

    Friday, June 22 2018 6:15 PM EDT2018-06-22 22:15:07 GMT

    New luxury apartments will be built in Westlake. The $30 million project called The Retreat at Westlake will be built by Brown Builders at 2900 Westwood Road according to a news release.  The apartments are part of a larger $100 million project that will include both luxury residential apartments and a commercial project. The luxury apartment complex will include 180 units, with 80 one-bedroom units, 84 two-bedroom units and 16 three-bedroom units. The...

    More >>

    New luxury apartments will be built in Westlake. The $30 million project called The Retreat at Westlake will be built by Brown Builders at 2900 Westwood Road according to a news release.  The apartments are part of a larger $100 million project that will include both luxury residential apartments and a commercial project. The luxury apartment complex will include 180 units, with 80 one-bedroom units, 84 two-bedroom units and 16 three-bedroom units. The...

    More >>
  • DeRidder man arrested for possession and distribution of child pornography

    DeRidder man arrested for possession and distribution of child pornography

    Friday, June 22 2018 6:11 PM EDT2018-06-22 22:11:51 GMT
    Justin Foley (Source: Louisiana State Police)Justin Foley (Source: Louisiana State Police)
    Justin Foley (Source: Louisiana State Police)Justin Foley (Source: Louisiana State Police)

    A DeRidder man has been arrested for possession and distribution of child pornography after an undercover child exploitation investigation, according to Sgt. James Anderson with Louisiana State Police. Anderson says in early June, LSP Special Victims Unit began an undercover investigation involving images of children being sexually abused. A search warrant was served Friday at a residence in DeRidder by LSP, Louisiana Probation and Parole, and the Beauregard Parish Sheriff's Office. ...

    More >>

    A DeRidder man has been arrested for possession and distribution of child pornography after an undercover child exploitation investigation, according to Sgt. James Anderson with Louisiana State Police. Anderson says in early June, LSP Special Victims Unit began an undercover investigation involving images of children being sexually abused. A search warrant was served Friday at a residence in DeRidder by LSP, Louisiana Probation and Parole, and the Beauregard Parish Sheriff's Office. ...

    More >>
  • BREAKING

    Baytown man indicted in Starks homicide

    Baytown man indicted in Starks homicide

    Friday, June 22 2018 5:35 PM EDT2018-06-22 21:35:21 GMT
    Boyd Hagood (Source: Calcasieu Parish Sheriff's Office)Boyd Hagood (Source: Calcasieu Parish Sheriff's Office)

    A Baytown, Texas, man has been indicted in connection with a murder near Starks last year. The body of Houston man Dustin Hammons, 22, was found in a rural area near Starks in August of 2017. Calcasieu Sheriff Tony Mancuso said at the time that Hammons was brought to be Calcasieu Parish to be killed. Boyd "Lurch" Hagood, 46, of Houston, Texas, was indicted on a charge of second-degree murder Thursday. Another person arrested on a second-degree murder charge in Hammon...

    More >>

    A Baytown, Texas, man has been indicted in connection with a murder near Starks last year. The body of Houston man Dustin Hammons, 22, was found in a rural area near Starks in August of 2017. Calcasieu Sheriff Tony Mancuso said at the time that Hammons was brought to be Calcasieu Parish to be killed. Boyd "Lurch" Hagood, 46, of Houston, Texas, was indicted on a charge of second-degree murder Thursday. Another person arrested on a second-degree murder charge in Hammon...

    More >>
Powered by Frankly