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Jefferson Parish President Mike Yenni talks about his education task force at the parish president's office in Elmwood, La. Thursday, Jan. 26, 2017. 

Saying that quantifiable goals are key to moving the Jefferson Parish school system forward, a task force created by Parish President Mike Yenni presented five recommendations to school leaders Friday and vowed to reconvene in a year to see how those recommendations are being implemented.

Yenni named the task force in January, saying he was troubled by the school system's recent drop of a letter grade in state evaluations. He said he hoped its recommendations would be considered by the parish School Board.

The task force consisted of 17 leaders from education and business and had a significant pro-business bent, which places it somewhat at odds with the dominant faction on the School Board.

School Superintendent Isaac Joseph said he would present the recommendations to his leadership team by Monday and then discuss them on a board retreat scheduled for next week.

The five recommendations — which were delivered in an address by Yenni aide and former parish School Superintendent Diane Roussel — run the gamut from encouraging early childhood education to improving teacher retention and taking quick action to right failing schools.

Yenni referred to the recommendations as "extending a helping hand to the school system and superintendent."

One recommendation calls for improving teacher retention through the creation of a nationwide teacher recruiting package including the launching of an advertising campaign called "Champions Teach." Each year, the report says, the Jefferson Parish school system has about 400 vacancies in the classroom.

The task force said it would pay for the ad campaign.

The Yenni administration's grant writer also will assist the school system in applying for grants to attract more teachers, Roussel said.

The task force suggested focusing more effort and funding on getting students into early childhood and pre-K programs that, Roussel said, are among the most valuable tools for making sure that by the third grade, students are reading at grade level.

The task force also praised the work of Head Start, the federally funded early childhood education and services program.

The group urged the system to act quickly to turn around schools judged to be failing, including converting some to charter schools within "one year of failing." The task force offered its members' and the administration's assistance in helping the system recruit proven charter operators.

The final two recommendations urged the school system to set a list of quantifiable goals and to seek business partnerships for "market and industry research."

The Yenni administration also offered assistance "to seek private/public partnerships to fund a comprehensive, baseline study of our system and attitudes toward our system."

Joseph said after the meeting that the recommendations were appreciated, especially those that came with specific offers of help or funding. He noted, for instance, that funding restrictions won't allow him to pay for an advertising campaign, so the task force's offer of help with such items was appreciated.

"We can't work in silos," he said, referring to the school system, parish government and business groups. "The school system is a microcosm of the community as a whole."

Yenni, who remains banned from school system campuses and events after he admitted to sending what he called "improper texts" to a 17-year old in 2015, said the task force plans to meet again in a year to gauge the school system's progress in implementing the recommendations.

Follow Faimon A. Roberts III on Twitter, @faimon.