A new “Excellence Performance Award” will be given by the Webster Parish School Board (WPSB), which will recognize students who win state or national honors in any area that is school sponsored.
“Some of the most joyful moments on the board are seeing students receive and earn awards,” said Robert Holloway, who proposed the new award to the board at Monday night’s meeting. “I would like to see us make an award that is given by the board.
“One of the things that was mentioned when I was campaigning last year was recognition,” Holloway continued. “Several people mentioned how important it is to be recognized by the board.”
Holloway said that employers and schools look at achievements of students. “Recognition looks good on a resume for jobs and scholarship opportunities,” he said.
Malachi Rigel and Superintendent W.W. “Butch” Williams suggested a committee set criteria for the award.
“We can get the supervisors that deal with awards on a daily basis to form a criteria on what will be recognized,” Williams suggested.
Holloway agreed to criteria being set by WPSB supervisors.
“Where would the funds to purchase the awards come from?” Linda Kinsey asked.
“I am donating a percentage of my pay from the school board back into the general fund,” Holloway said. “I would like to see that money go toward these awards.”
Board members receive $600 monthly for their service, with the president receiving an additional $100 a month.
Holloway announced he would be donating 10 percent of his pay, or $60 a month, in March. At that time, it was unsure how many teachers could be laid off after decisions were made to close and reconfigure schools and teachers’ pay was frozen. These cost-saving measures were taken to save money in light of a forecasted deficit.
Holloway said that while his donation would not save a large amount of money, every little bit helps and his actions were made to set an example.
Secondary Supervisor Morris Busby offered to make the awards rather than purchasing them.
“I made the awards presented tonight and if the board would like, I could do something similar for this award,” Busby said. “Holloway’s donations could then be applied to frames or covers for the awards.”
The board agreed to Holloway’s motion without any objection.
“To have a governing body recognize an achievement would carry a lot of weight to businesses and schools,” Holloway said. “I think the students deserve this.”