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       Technology was  the primary item of discussion at Wednesday’s meeting of the Evangeline Parish School Board.

        The Board approved a recommendation by Superintendent of Schools Toni Hamlin and Technology Facilitator Connie Bertrand to apply for $959,998 in E Rate funding.  E rate is the funding rate the federal government pays for technology in public schools. Currently, the E rate for Evangeline Parish Schools is 86% so the school district is only responsible for 14 percent of the cost of eligible services. Should the federal government approve the application, the school board’s local share will only be $61,979. The board was able to obtain a $25,000 grant from Cabot Corporation and a $47,000 grant from another federal source.

     The funding will be used to begin phase one of a three phase project for state mandated online testing of students in the next few years. Phase one begins the costly project of re-wiring parish high schools for email service, internet access and network infrastructure. Phase one will include upgrades at Basile High, Mamou High, Pine Prairie High and Ville Platte High School.

      By 2014, the state will begin phased-in online testing of students beginning with the middle grade students.

       In other business, the school board:

--approved the contract renewals for another two year term for Ville Platte High Principal Kelli LaFleur and Child Welfare and Attendance Supervisor Phillip Buller;

--appointed Doug Guillory as new Head Football Coach at Pine Prairie High School;

--recognized Basile Board Member Dr. Bobby Deshotel who was recently recognized by the Louisiana School Board Association at its conference of currently begin the longest serving school board member in the state. Dr. Deshotel has been serving as school board member from District Two for 43 years.

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The Louisiana Swamp Pop Museum operated by the City of Ville Platte is open to the public every Friday and Saturday from 10:00am to 3:00pm. Come view the amazing artifacts, photos, records, Wall of Fame and hear the music. Admission charge is $3 adults, $2 seniors and $1 for children under 12. The museum is located on Northwest Railroad Avenue.

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