In a unanimous vote by the school board, Washington was named to the position that has not been filled since 2011. In addition to his regular pay, he will receive $6,000 annually.
“I look forward to working with Superintendent Johnny Rowland Jr. to get us to where we need to be as a district,” he said. “We’re both Webster Parish boys and we have to work to make it the best it can be.”
He will have responsibilities in addition to those of his current position as child welfare and attendance supervisor. Superintendent Johnny Rowland, in a letter submitted to board members, said he would serve as his designee in the event Rowland could not attend events among other duties.
“We need a clear chain of command,” he said. “We need a No. 2 person in the district that is in charge when I am out. Not only do we need to have someone who is responsible in this office when the superintendent is out, we need to have someone that can represent the superintendent at functions when the superintendent cannot be there.”
Another important reason for filling the position, Rowland continued, is that if something unforeseen happens, such as health issues or resignations, then someone is there to continue making decisions for the district.
Rowland listed a number of other reasons for re-establishing the position, chief among them that Washington is the right man for the job. Washington has served Webster Parish for 26 years.
“One thing I respect about him is that he may not always tell you what you want to hear, but he will tell you what he thinks and what he believes is right,” Rowland said. “I’ve seen him in tough situations, and I’ve seen him use good judgement. He’s intelligent and, something that’s missing in a lot of people today, common sense.”
In other personnel news, Rowland introduced the new head football coach at Lakeside Jr./Sr. High School, Jason McClendon.
From Shreveport, McClendon said taking this position feels like coming home and allows him and his family to take a slower pace in life. He also has big plans for Lakeside football.
“I’m honored and privileged to serve Lakeside High School in this role,” he said. “We’re going to be doing some things – I know this sounds like a big statement, but it’s true – at Lakeside High School that high schools in America rarely does. I want the boys, when they leave Lakeside High School, to become the most elite husbands, fathers, businessmen, or whatever they pursue in their lives. I’m going to be doing that by training them to face their fears.”
McClendon is also the nephew of the famed LSU coach Chuck McClendon.
In other news, the school board:
approved change orders for J.A. Phillips Middle School and Webster Jr. High School, to install a wireless basketball scoreboard for $5,334, installation of isolation valves at Phillips and Webster for $13,491; to replace restroom equipment in building A at Phillips for $12,625; and plumbing and electrical revisions for $4,594, all to be paid for from the Minden School Building fund
adopted a resolution to go to the State Bond Commission regarding the proposed general obligation school refunding bonds of Doyline School. Attorney Grant Schleuter told board members this would be an estimated savings of $250,000 to taxpayers over the life of the bond.
approved rebidding as surplus the old Springhill High School building at 80 percent of the appraised value at $364,800. Rowland said no bids were received on July 6.
approved the lowest bid from CW&W Contractors for drainage improvements at Browning Elementary for $91,770
approved Hope Contractors for the audio sound system at the Minden High School football stadium for $60,00.
The next board meeting will be at 6 p.m., Monday, Aug. 7.