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School district honors top parents

Parents who go beyond the call of duty to support and improvethe Brookhaven School District were recognized Tuesday night fortheir efforts.

During a short ceremony, principals from each school introduced”parents of the year” to the school board and Superintendent ofEducation Dr. Sam Bounds.

The parents of the year are Leanne Collier for BrookhavenElementary School, Nydia Consuelo M. Oster for Mamie MartinElementary and Alexander Junior High Schools, Buddy Thibodeaux forLipsey Middle School, Celeste Carty for Brookhaven High School, andDewayne Oberschmidt for Brookhaven Technical Center.

Each principal pointed out the unique ways the parents havevolunteered their time to not only help their own children, butalso countless others in the district. The parents were recognizedfor working diligently on school projects and working within theschools in a variety of capacities, including office work andassisting teachers.

“Research has shown that parental involvement has a significantimpact on children,” said James Tillman, assistantsuperintendent.

One parent received special recognition for her efforts inhelping children learn Spanish. Along with being named parent ofthe year for Mamie Martin Elementary and Alexander Junior HighSchools, Oster was also honored as the district’s parent of theyear.

“I admire her tremendously. To be a full-time working mother andbe so involved with her four children is admirable,” said DanitaHobbs, assistant principal at Alexander Junior High.

Bounds also commended the parents for their assistance in theschool district. He commented on how beneficial the district’s opendoor policy for parents has been over the years.

“We are all winners because of your involvement,” saidBounds.

Following the ceremony, students from Brookhaven TechnicalCenter entertained the board with a presentation about the alliedhealth program.

The meeting was officially opened with the rotation of boardpositions. Carl Aycock will remain as chairman and Amy Valentinewill serve as vice chairman, with Gwendolyn Sartin as secretary.Dan Brown and Dr. Prentiss Smith will serve as board members forthe upcoming year.

After the rotation, board members were updated on the progressof construction and renovation at Brookhaven High School by ProjectSuperintendent Robert Freeman and David Mann, project manager.

Roof work on the east and west wings should begin within thenext week and will get the project close to being on schedule whencompleted.

“We’re about to get there,” said Freeman, who noted that work isnow about 30 days behind schedule.

Representatives from Barranco Architects and CarothersConstruction Management were optimistic about meeting the November19 completion date for the entire project.

In other matters, Bounds talked with the board about theprogress of the state legislators in funding the Minimum FoundationProgram.

“Everybody’s still saying the it will be taken care of thisyear… but we will not know for sure until April 1,” Bounds toldboard members.

The board decided to meet again on April 3 at 6 p.m. to discussthe results of legislators’ actions.