At the Morehouse Parish School Board's Town Hall Meeting Aug. 9, Morehouse Parish School Board Superintendent Dr. George Noflin discussed upcoming plans and programs for the school district. Parish schools will have programs where mentors meet with students periodically and help make sure they finish school. Noflin will also have an advisory board at both the high school and junior high made up of students. “We meet to discuss concerns from what foods they don't like in the cafeteria to concerns that are parish wide,” Noflin said. All of the schools have been declared Asthma Free by undergoing health inspections and making changes around the schools according to advice from those inspections. “Some of the changes we have made include cutting down on idle buses and cutting down on clutter in the schools,” Noflin said. The schools have received over $5000 total in scholarships from Entergy and Walmart. Scholastic donated books to help kids in the parish start their own libraries at home. The schools also underwent a safety and security audit. “Our primary focus is making sure our children are safe and secure,” Noflin said. “We were given commendations and recommendations during the auditors visit.” Noflin recently went to Monroe for ALICE training after hearing parents concern for their children's safety after what happened at Sandy Hook Elementary. There were people at this training from Texas, Arkansas and Louisiana, but Morehouse Parish was the only one who sent educators. The ALICE training addresses five components including alert, lockdown, inform, counter and evacuate. “After attending this training, I intend to bring ALICE training here so that we can be better prepared,” Noflin said. This will be the first year Morehouse Parish uses Engage New York in the curriculum. Fresh Start is going to the altered alternative program starting this year. The program will have three different levels for student. 1.Coming to school 2.Staying out of trouble 3.Doing the work “The students in the Fresh Start program will be able to do their work on computers rather than waiting for work to be sent from a teacher,” Noflin said. The board received a three year grant for Morehouse Junior High, Bastrop High School, H.V. Adams and Southside to have 10 hours a week for after school tutoring. This includes transportation, director pay and supper for students. Rachel's Challenge will also be making visits to some of the schools to discuss bullying. During the meeting, Noflin took time to introduce this years principals. Each school has planned open houses for parents and students through the end of the month. See tomorrow's Enterprise for a story regarding the open houses.