Morehouse Parish School System Interim Superintendent Hazel Sellers today announced a grant from Morehouse BioEnergy LLC to fund infrastructure improvements at Beekman Charter School.

The grant will cover parking lot improvements and site preparation for a future stadium, both of which are part of a long-term capital improvement plan designed to provide a high-quality teaching and learning environment at Beekman.

According to Beekman Principal Roy McCoy, Morehouse BioEnergy has been a strong partner since joining the community in 2014. McCoy noted that many of the facilities’ employees have children at Beekman, and the employees have previously participated in community service projects and other volunteer activities to improve Beekman school grounds.

“We are very proud that Morehouse BioEnergy has come into our community and been so supportive of our school,” Principal McCoy said. “They have helped us with several projects over the past two years, and we are deeply appreciative of their efforts.”

Morehouse BioEnergy, a subsidiary of Drax Biomass Inc., manufactures compressed wood pellets for use in generating renewable, low-carbon electricity. The facility, located 12 miles north of downtown Bastrop, employs approximately 50 people and is an important contributor to the region’s transportation and forestry sectors. When Drax Biomass broke ground on the $120 million facility in 2013, it marked the largest capital investment in Morehouse Parish since the closure of International Paper’s historic Louisiana Mill. Since joining the community, Morehouse BioEnergy has fostered close ties with local landowners and timber suppliers to help promote sustainable forestry. The facility has also taken an active role in community affairs, sponsoring local youth sports leagues and participating in volunteer events. Morehouse BioEnergy, LLC is a wholly owned subsidiary of Drax Biomass Inc., a manufacturer of compressed wood pellets produced from sustainably sourced wood fiber.

“Morehouse Parish has been a tremendous partner through these first few years of operation, and we’re delighted to uphold our end of that partnership by providing support to the local communities around our facility,” Gavin Black, the plant manager for Morehouse BioEnergy, said. “We look forward to identifying additional opportunities to assist the School District in its quest to provide a top-notch educational experience.”

“On behalf of the school system, I wish to express appreciation to Morehouse Bioenergy for their commitment to our schools as demonstrated by their contribution to upgrade the infrastructure at Beekman," Sellers said. "We welcome dialog with Morehouse Bioenergy around future opportunities as needs are identified throughout the Morehouse Parish School System.”