Bogalusa High School Principal Bryan Stewart has resigned effective July 31, Bogalusa City Schools Superintendent Louise Smith said.
According to sources, Stewart submitted his resignation Tuesday, shortly before a committee meeting of the school board. Board members were made aware of his resignation during that meeting.
Smith, who said that Stewart was “making a career move,” went on to say, “It’s going to be a loss to our district — he is an outstanding young man and a good administrator. I appreciate the opportunity to work with him.”
The loss comes at a critical time as the high school prepares to merge with the junior high school, a move that is scheduled to take effect at the start of the 2013-14 school year. Board members had originally committed to the merger, which was to be effective for the upcoming school year, but backed off because of logistical and construction concerns.
Stewart just completed his first year as principal after Smith transferred former principal Pam Ard from Bogalusa High as one of a series of personnel moves shortly after the new superintendent took office this past July. Ard had been principal for two years and had guided the school out of its Academically Unsatisfactory School rating.
Ard left the school system this past fall.
During this past school year, Stewart, and his assistant principal, Lesley McKinley, together assumed the duties of Bogalusa New Tech High School, when Principal Don McDaniel took a leave of absence for medical reasons. McDaniel was not able to return before the end of the just-ended school year, but according to Patricia Noto, supervisor of secondary education, he has since returned, and currently is working at summer school.
Board members have begun an immediate search for Stewart’s replacement.
In other business, the board approved a 10-cent meal price equity school lunch price increase for paying students in the elementary and secondary schools, as set forth by the state.
Permission was also granted to hire Robert L. Hammonds of Hammonds and Sills Law Firm to represent the board with respect to litigation against the state seeking to have Act 2 and SCR99 (MFP) of the 2012 Regular Session of the Louisiana Legislature declared unconstitutional, as well as a violation of state law. There was some discussion from the public regarding the suit.
A gentleman questioned whether the Bogalusa School Board, on its own, was going to sue the state regarding the issue.
“No, the whole state… school boards throughout the state,” Board President Paul Kates said. “We’re just passing this resolution so that it will be on record. All the school boards in the state are filing this.”
Kates went on to say that the Louisiana School Board Association is hiring the attorney, and the BCS board is part of it. When confronted with the claim, “So, they are telling you to do this,” board member Rev. Raymond Mims said. “We’re doing this on our own because the bill will kill public education.”
After some discussion among board members and the public, Board Vice President Adam Kemp said the Louisiana School Board Association was not telling the board to be a part of the litigation; it offered the board the opportunity to join with other boards throughout the state to file one suit rather than each board filing a separate suit.
The dates for July meetings were adjusted to allow for attendance at the NSBA Southern Region Conference scheduled for July 23-26 in Biloxi, Miss. The committee meeting will be held Tuesday, July 10 at 5 p.m., and the regular board meeting is set for Wednesday, July 11 at 5:30 p.m.
Link to The Daily News:
Stewart resigns as BHS principal | Search for replacement under way