Melinda Hardy for School Board Dist. 1

I have enjoyed visiting with voters of School Board District 1.  As I look back on my conversations I realize that there are recurring questions about my qualifications and positions.  I’m going to take this opportunity to answer those questions.

  1. What qualifications do I have to be your School Board member for District 1?I
    a.  I graduated from the public school in Many, LA in 1972.
    b.  I attended NSU for 3 years, where I received a Bachelor’s Degree in Education for Nursery School, Kindergarten, and Elementary Grades 1-8.
    c.  For the next 5 years I taught in the public school system teaching Title 1 Math and Reading at Florien High School, and Kindergarten at Zwolle Elementary school.
    d.  In 1979 I earned a Master’s degree plus 30 credits to qualify for Principal and Supervisor grades
    e.  In 1980, I moved to Coushatta and opened and operated a 3 & 4 year old Preschool for 9 years to prepare young students for kindergarten.
    f.  In 1989 I taught high school math at Riverdale Academy.
    g.  Later I attended LSUS and earned a degree in Accounting.
  2. What do I know of the needs of the students and schools in Red River Parish? 
    a.  Beginning in 2016 I taught in Red River Parish Public Schools for 4 years.
    b.  Ten of my Grandchildren have attended Red River Elementary School, Red River Junior High School and Red River High School. Three of the 10 have graduated from Red River High School.
    c.  I have 2 daughters teaching in Red River Parish Schools.
    d.  I have firsthand knowledge of the needs of the Red River Parish students and schools. Some of those needs are:
    i. Involve parents in their children’s education whenever possible.
    ii. Work on reducing class size. Teachers are spread thin and students do not get the personal attention they require.
    iii. Provide mentors for new and struggling teachers.
    iv. Provide Advisors for High School students to help them apply for colleges, find and apply for scholarships and help with career choices.
  3. How can I help improve the schools in Red River Parish?
    a.  I will listen to the community concerning issues facing the schools, as well as hear experiences and thoughts from teachers, educators and staff.
    b.  My priority is student achievement. My focus will always be on student outcomes.
    c.  I think it is important to set high academic standards, ensure Board Member transparency and accountability, create a safe and positive school culture, and advance policies that allow every student to thrive.

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