Of the 69 people who died in house fires in Louisiana last year, only four perished in structures that had working smoke detectors.
While the loss of those four lives is tragic, what may be equally devastating are the fire deaths that occur in homes with no smoke detectors — deaths that in many cases, perhaps even in most cases, are preventable. The Louisiana Fire Marshal’s office estimates that 95 percent of fire deaths statewide occur in residences without operable smoke alarms.
Over the past few months, various Lincoln Parish School principals have shared their tactics and plans for increasing their School Performance Scores with Lincoln Parish School Board members and the public.
The good news is that it looks like that no schools are sitting on their haunches. Elementary and high schools alike have taken actions to improve their scores. Most elementary schools are using programs such as A-Z Reading, Singapore Math, Being a Writer, Accelerated Reader and other research-based programs that have proven effective in increasing student abilities at other schools.
Accountability scores for this year’s Louisiana high-school freshmen are a bit up in the air. This set of students is being tested under an entirely new system, which means it’s difficult for educators on the local or state level to really pinpoint exactly how next year’s School Performance Scores might turn out.
For the second year in a row, a Lincoln Parish student and Gunasekaran twin won the Louisiana You Be the Chemist competition, a contest that encourages fifth through eighth grade students to explore important chemistry and science, technology, engineering and mathematics concepts.
I.A. Lewis sixth grader Jonathan Gunasekaran brought home this year’s Louisiana championship. His twin brother, Benjamin, won the state competition in 2015.
This year Benjamin could not defend his title as he took home second place.