Sigh. Here?s another article that I must write which I do not wish to. In regards to the EBR Schools Occupational Therapist evaluation and support staff, I have to say that their classifications of determining disabilities and so forth is grossly deficient. My son was in special education in the EBR Parish school system for 6 years and every year I attempted to get occupational therapy for my son. Every year I was denied such therapy. Because of that my son lagged in writing skills and his alternative skills at using technology devices were deficit. In addition he was not able to do simple tasks as dress himself and just now at the age of almost 16 years old he finally is able to tie his own shoes. Even though I did these things with him and tried my best, I needed additional help and it was obvious from my son?s activities, that he desperately needed occupational therapy. His physicians agreed with me but NO, not the EBR Parish School Board. They continued their denial of my IEP suggestions, and it was not until I moved to another state where he had a total re-evaluation where occupational therapy was prescribed including that now being done for him with job skills assistance in high school. Now who?s fault this is? I don?t know. All I know is that for evaluation purposes, should you ever need occupational therapy with the EBR Parish School board, I suggest that you try to pay for it yourself, get outside agencies to help you or get a good attorney to sue the school board. Otherwise you will wind up like me, and finally going to another state to get assistance for your child because the local system refused to help.
PROS: It's There, I guess
CONS: Absolutely Pathetic Evaluation Methods to get Services
My youngest son attended Merrydale Elementary for several years through the special education department. His teacher was first class, but after comparing this school to the other elementary schools that he subsequently attended in Gwinnett County Georgia, I realize just how deficit his assignment at Merrydale was. I do not fully blame the school itself. They went out of their way to help me in many instances and were very accommodating in helping me move to this new state. However, I had difficulty getting certain evaluations approved at this school which were easily approved after I moved to another state. While for Baton Rouge, this school has definitely made an impact with its high standards of excellence and behavior, I have to point out that it does have deficits, mostly with the issue of money for the school and its services. Regardless for what they had, this school did provide good education for my son and a strong basis for him to advance.
PROS: Special Ed Teachers
CONS: Lack of Funding and Services
Sigh. It is very difficult to write this article as I am a graduate of Istrouma High School and I have seen what has happened to my old alma matter over the years through the eyes of my son who attended this school for one year. Istrouma High School has always had a great history in Baton Rouge. Even the word Istrouma is translated as ?red stick? which is the same translation of the word ?Baton Rouge?. However, I fear for Istrouma?s existence in the future and I would like to tell you why.
As my son attended Istrouma one year, I saw how the school had degraded. My son choose this school as a transfer as we lived in the Baker area (before there was a Baker city system). He wanted to take technology related classes to advance himself. In addition he wanted to be active on the football and wrestling teams which he did. However, it was not a pleasant experience having my son attend my old alma matter for I had seen what it had become. Since I left Istrouma in 1975, there really has not been any major renovations to the school to my knowledge. The school is in bad shape and really needs to be torn down and rebuilt. The area around Istrouma which used to be a really nice homey area filled with active families within the school has been changed to include violent individuals who not only vandalize but actually shoot weapons. It was not uncommon for me to pick up my son from football practice and hear weapons being discharged. In fact, during one of the football games, shots were fired after the game causing mass chaos. The teachers at this school are good and the administration of the school has been very helpful, but compared to the academic standards that this school as an honors high school has against other schools in other states is rather suspect. I don?t know if that is the fault of the EBR Parish School system or the State of Louisiana, but it is the truth. From having my son make excellent grades at this magnet school, I moved to Georgia with him, where he almost failed at two subjects that he was supposed to go to the state rally to represent Istrouma. Now that?s the fault of someone, I don?t know who. One thing is for certain. This school has definitely changed for the worse. With the situation with no taxes being passed for improvements or replacements to most of the EBR Parish schools, I see a further degradation of Istrouma in the future. Already the auditorium is closed (to my knowledge) and certainly other parts of the campus will certainly need to be condemned the way things are going. As for Hail Istrouma, I hail it, but with sorrow at what it has now become.
PROS: Teachers, Coaches
CONS: Violent Area, Questionable Standards
I have a different perspective of Crestworth Middle School than most individuals. I actually taught at Crestworth Middle for one year, and then several years later my oldest son attended this middle school for two years. Crestworth Middle is in a really bad situation. It?s a really good school surrounded by poor neighborhoods that are depressed. The school has high academic standards and the teachers are excellent, but I question the security of the school itself. When I was teaching it was not uncommon for vehicles to be vandalized and individuals who were not students to be found on campus. When my son went to Crestworth, someone vandalized the orchestra room and destroyed it/took instruments causing them to be forced to take other electives. This is part of the reason why I hesitate to recommend anyone to go to the EBR Parish School system, as it has become more depressed because of the criminal element nearby the schools. However, if this is ever remedied. I suggest that you try Crestworth which is a good magnet school of math, science, and technology.
PROS: Good Teachers, High Standards
My oldest son participated in football, wrestling and other sports in both middle and high school through the East Baton Rouge Parish School System. The coaches that he had were incredible mentors and actually pushed the issue of GOOD grades more than they did actual performance in the sport. Because of this, the athletes had much more respect for the coaches as father figures and thus the coaches were able to be able to inspire them to perform better within those sports. As a plus, the EBR Parish School System does have a great coaching system at least from the schools that we have been personally involved in.
PROS: Grades First Then Sports
The City of Baker finally got smart and left the EBR Parish School system and I am very glad for that. The City of Baker schools are some of the best in the area for government schools. I substitute taught at Baker High School many times and was pleased with the discipline and politeness of the students. In addition, my son attended Baker Middle school and I was pleased with the teachers and staff interaction. He was very active in sports and in orchestra. If there?s a downside to this school system it is that it is very small and there are not a lot of options.
PROS: Teachers, Staff
Both of my children attended Central Child care over a 9 year span. The staff at Central Child care went out of their way to help me even with my disabled child. (second child). Although they eventually could not care for him, they attempted to refer me to agencies that could and helped with the evaluation for my son to receive special education. Their prices are about par for most of the child cares in the Baton Rouge area and they have a certified school as part of the facility now.
PROS: Helpful Friendly Staff
CONS: Probably a Waiting List
My brothers and I attended Howell Park Elementary School and have found it to be one of the better schools in the North Baton Rouge area. The teachers were very good in most instances and devoted to the standards of high quality learning. The terrible thing about Howell Park Elementary School at this time is that it is in need of being fully rebuilt and there are no tax dollars to take care of this situation. Consequently the building is not attractive and because the neighborhood is getting older, the chances for this to happen in the future are not very good.
PROS: Good Teachers.
CONS: School Building
Brownsfield Baptist Church has a high quality, extremely experienced teaching staff that will guarantee your child will receive a good education. I know several of the teachers who have taught at this school. These teachers LEFT the EBR Parish School system because of all of the ?baloney? that goes on with it concerning red tape and other foolishness that inhibit education. And at Brownsfield Baptist Church school they are guaranteed that the students are there to learn in a good and steady work environment with the full support of the administrative staff. This school ONLY hires high quality teachers and it is very difficult to obtain employment from them as a potential teacher without a great deal of experience.
PROS: High Standards of Excellence, great Teachers
I taught at Park Forest Middle School as my student teacher assignment. This school holds a wide variety of students at different levels of ability. Overall, the school offers the right mix of treating the students like a combination of adults but keeping the creativity of children in tact. The teachers on staff are of excellent quality and overall the school is able to handle most problems that arise. The students themselves are really actually very responsible in handling homework and other assignments and overall, I believe you will be pleased with this school.
PROS: Experienced Teachers / Students
CONS: It's in EBR School System