Citizens and parents were able to meet the new administration at Bastrop High School Monday night in an informal "meet and greet" held in the school's cafeteria.
Morehouse Parish School Superintendent Dr. George Noflin began the program by informing those present to the changes in leadership and conveying his excitement for the upcoming year. "We have made adjustments in personnel across the parish and I am a firm believer that you have to have the right people in place and those people should be properly trained," Noflin said. "The administration at Bastrop High, along with myself and others recently attended a workshop in North Carolina entitled 'High Schools that Work' and we are on the right path for Bastrop High." "I want to be the first to formerly introduce Dr. David Nordman as the new principal for BHS and I know that he has big plans which he and his staff can bring to fruition here." "We have tremendous opportunity at Bastrop High and with that opportunity comes challenges, but with this group of administrators, we will make things happen," Nordman said. Introducing the staff, Nordman told the group that each one of them had worked in the capacity of principal and their first goal was to figure out where their students were and motivate, encourage and support them to be whatever they wanted to be. He also introduced a new program for incoming freshmen. "When this year's freshman are ready to graduate, they can walk out of Bastrop High School with not only a high school degree, but also an associate degree from Delta Community College," Nordman continued. "We are working to put this program together, which will help students either be able to go straight to work making a decent wage or go on to college with a degree behind them. All of this without it costing parents any money. "We are offering these students hope and will leave no stone unturned and no child untouched in order for them to succeed." Introduced as administrative staff were Vice Principals Rene Fonte, Helen I.P. Smith and Lori Wallace and as 21st Century Grant Administrator was Crystal Washington. Fonte was most recently the principal at Morehouse Jr. High School, but is excited to be back at Bastrop High. "When Dr. Noflin called to let me know of the change, I asked him 'how soon can I go?'" Fonte said. A product of Bastrop High School, Smith is also excited about the new year. "I am so excited to see what this year holds, I have just been walking on clouds," Smith said. "My reason for being here is the children and I am just a servant here to help them. I think it takes team work to make the dream work and we have an excellent team in place." Smith most recently was a principal in Lake Providence and has worked in various administration roles throughout the years. She was also chosen to represent Louisiana at the University of Virginia, where she was able to train as a turn around specialist for school. Wallace is no stranger to Bastrop High School, as she has served in an administrative position there since 2004. She served as principal at East Side Elementary for 14 years before joining the BHS staff and will be in charge of the Freshman Academy. "I am super excited about this upcoming year and literally cannot wait!" Wallace said. She also made a point to let the students in attendance know how happy she was to see them and their accomplishments. "To see these former students in the roles of hosts for tonight, representing JROTC, Cheerleaders and Star Steppers just does my heart good," Wallace said. Another new face at Bastrop High will be Washington, who will be on hand for extending learning time with students through the 21st Century Grant. No stranger to school and studying, Washington is currently completing course work to earn her doctoral degree. Nordman finished the meeting by announcing the date for "Meet the Rams," which will be held Aug. 22. "After the public gets a chance to meet the football team, cheer squad, star steppers and band, we will come to the cafeteria and break bread as a family, because that is what we are," Nordman said.