BAKER — Chakesha Scott, the president and CEO of Education Explosion Inc., briefed School Board members Tuesday night on the possibility of starting a charter school in Baker.
Education Explosion Inc. is a Baton Rouge-based nonprofit that offers tutoring at schools, libraries and churches, according to the company’s website.
“If this happens, we would have to cut teachers,” board President Dana Carpenter said in response to Scott’s presentation. “According to the numbers in the packet, Education Explosion provided, we would lose $1 million to this school.”
Scott replied that if the charter school opened, the district would not need as many teachers, since it would have fewer students.
“This is a slap in the face to our teachers,” board member Troy Watson said. “Our teachers work hard and our school system has improved so much that I pulled my grandchild out of a charter school to go into the Baker school system.”
Scott countered, “This school system has three schools that have been rated unacceptable and are federally mandated to provide supplemental educational services. That’s why we are here in the first place.”
Carpenter thanked Scott for her presentation and told her that the board would consider it. “We have to ask the tough questions for the good of our students,” he said.
Other items addressed by the board included:
TEACHER PAY: The board voted unanimously to approve a $1,000 pay supplement to teachers for the 2011-12 school year.
Board member Doris Alexander said that in previous years, teachers have received $2,000 supplements. “Some teachers have told me that they returned this year on the promise of that amount.”
“We had to decide this year between the larger supplement and a reduction in forces,” Carpenter said.
BAKER HIGH TRACK: The board voted 3-1 to deny additional funding for completion of the Baker High School track. Watson, Elaine Davis and Shona Boxie voted in favor. Alexander cast the dissenting vote.
LIBRARIAN SUSPENDED: The board approved 3-1 a five-day suspension of a Baker Heights Elementary librarian.
Boxie, Watson and Carpenter voted in favor of the suspension. David abstained and Alexander cast the dissenting vote.
Maxine Gray was arrested Oct. 25 after she was accused of allegedly choking a 9-year-old student at the school on Sept. 1.