MIKE FAULK, EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR
CENTRAL — Central schools Supt. Mike Faulk has been elected president of the Louisiana Association of School Superintentdents for the coming year, which will add to his responsibilities but also to the prestige of the Central Community School System. Faulk previously served as president of the association, when he was superintendent of schools in Morehouse Parish.
Supt. Faulk is now one of the oldest superintendents in the state, in terms of years of service. With 18 years as a superintendent, he ranks No. 4. Most superintendents are relatively new to their jobs.
As president of the association, he will represent superintendents in matters dealing with the governor and BESE. He will chair the Superintendent’s advisory committee and serve on the Board of the Louisiana School for Math and Sciences in Natchitoches. He will also appoint superintendents to serve on various bodies, such as the LHSAA, Teachers Retirement Board, the Governor’s Office on Accountability, and the High School Redesign Commission. He will testify before the various committees of the legislature on education matters.
Faulk said the key issue facing superintendents today is finances. “There’s been no growth in the Minimum Foundation Program in three years,” he said, “and that’s taken its toll on school systems. It’s put more responsibility on schools systems without giving them any more resources. Most school systems are losing pupils and thus state money.”
The second most important issue is school accountability, Faulk said. The number of academically unacceptable schools has been growing, and also the number of charter schools. The state has taken over a number of schools, but that effort has not shown great success, he said.
The third issue is school and district report cards. Instead of one to four stars, schools and districts will get a letter grade of A to F. “That will probably result in fights in some districts, as parents try to get out of under-performing schools and into better ones,” he said. He said a flaw in the new system is that it does not take into account academic improvement.
The fourth issue is value-added assessment, he said. It will look at growth by individual teachers. “In this situation, you may show tremendous growth for a slow group and little growth for high group.” This will be a two-year pilot study.