Police Jury calls for Special Meeting on Wednesday, December 6th

The Jackson Parish Police Jury has called for a Special Meeting to be held at 12:15 pm on Wednesday, December 6th in the Nathaniel Zeno, Jr. Meeting Room of the Jackson Parish Administrative Building, located at 160 Industrial Drive in Jonesboro.

On the agenda are four items to be considered by JPPJ members Todd Culpepper (President), Lewis Chatham, Amy Magee, John McCarty, Tarneshala “Niki” Cowans, Regina Rowe and Keith Burris. 

Agenda Items

1. Introduce and review proposed 2024 budget.
2. Consider and Approve the hiring of Kimberly Lord for Maintenance Supervisor in the Maintenance Department.
3. Consider and approve 2024 Holiday Schedule.
4. Consider and approve the 2024 Solid Waste dumping fees increase.

In accordance with the Americans with Disabilities Act, if you need special assistance, please contact Emmett Gibbs, Secretary/Treasurer at (318)259-2361 Ext. 3 describing the assistance that is necessary.


Jackson Parish Schools to take part in Safe Schools Louisiana program

The Jackson Parish School District will be taking part in the Crimestoppers Safe Schools Louisiana program. The announcement was made in the statement shown below that was posted on the JPSD facebook page on Monday, December 4th. 

JPSD Statement

Due to the requirements of Louisiana Senate Bill #207, Act #334, in the next two weeks, your student in grades 6-12 will be presented with information on how they can help make their school and community safer by reporting dangerous or concerning behaviors. 

The Crimestoppers Safe Schools Louisiana anonymous reporting solution will be presented to our students, and they will be able to download the mobile app, once it is released for Louisiana, if they have a mobile device. There will also be a 30 second spot regarding this app on the district and school social media pages.

Students can use the Safe Schools Louisiana App to report bullying, suicide concerns, depression, sexting, stealing, threats, cutting, abuse, dating and domestic violence, fights, drugs, alcohol, weapons or other types of dangerous situations that threaten their safety or the safety of others for the purpose of prevention and interventions. 

Safe Schools Louisiana will help keep our students and our schools safer by:
Creating a positive school culture or climate
Giving students a voice to share concerns
Gathering information to then proactively address concerns
Preventing tragedies from the personal level to the community level
Building trust within our school community

Please encourage your student to use this life saving technology to better our schools and community. You may also visit the Safe Schools Louisiana website to learn more about this program at www.safeschoolsla.com


Local schools in final regular season tournaments of the year this weekend

One final weekend of “tournament time” is on tap for area schools as JHHS, Quitman and Saline all play in their final tournaments of the regular season. The Jonesboro-Hodge girls and boys will take part in the West Ouachita Tournament that runs from December 7 -10, while Quitman and Saline venture to Ruston to play in the Cedar Creek Invitational which is played as a round robin for the girls and a double elimination tourney for the boys beginning on Thursday, December 7th. 

In girls actions Quitman plays Carroll High out of Monroe at 4:30 pm on Thursday to open the Cedar Creek Tourney with Saline playing host Cedar Creek at 5:45 pm. IOn Friday, Saline plays Haughton in the first game at 4:00 pm with Quitman squaring off against Summerfield at 6:30 pm. The tourney ends on Saturday with Cedar Creek playing Quitman at 5:45 pm. On the boys side, Quitman and Saline will meet at 5:15 pm on Friday with the remaining schedule depending on who wins and who loses. 

No matchups or game times have been reported at the West Ouachita tournament. Weston and Dodson High Schools are both off this weekend. 

 


Gerry Mims voted to be Vice-President of Jackson Parish School Board for 2024

Gerry Mims was named Vice-President of the Jackson Parish School Board for 2024. The action was taken at the regularly scheduled meeting that was held on December 4th in the conference room of the Jackson Parish School District Central Office. 

The session opened with Amy Hay presenting information on 2022-2023 School Performance Scores followed by chairman’s of various committees which met making recommendations for the panel of Calvin Waggoner, Wade McBride, Rick Barlow, Gerry Mims, Paulette Belton, Dennis Clary and Mary Saulters to adopt.

Approved were the following:

(1) Payment of General Fund, Federal Program, School Food Service, Sales Tax, Special Education, District Maintenance bills.
(2) Payment to D2I in the amount of $19,250.00 for our District Annual Data Package that assists in analyzing data-driven school improvement plans, January 1, 2024 – December 31, 2024, to be paid from 2023-2024 ESSER III funds.
(3) Approve the Differentiated Compensation Allocation stipend for the fiscal year 2023-2024 to be paid to highly effective teachers (using the 2022-2023 evaluation ratings). The total allocation for this funding is $76,414, to be paid from the Differentiated Compensation Allocation fund.
(4) Accept low quote of $193,380.00 from Regional Construction, LLC for site preparation for the Weston High School Baseball and Softball Complex renovations, to be paid from Weston District funds. (Pending Act 397 funding) 
(5) Approve Change Order No. 1 from Regional Construction, LLC for site preparation for the Weston High School Baseball and Softball Complex renovations to reduce the cost of total project by $36,780.00.
(6) Accept low quote of $109,387.76 from Canon Services for materials and labor to replace cooler and freezer equipment at all schools and Central Office, to be paid from School Food Service funds.

For an entire copy of the minutes of the meeting see the Classifieds section. 


Tuesday Tilts: Quitman only area school to emerge victorious

Area fans of most local schools got to see three games for the price of two on Tuesday but had to make short trips to see their favorite team play. The exception was Jonesboro-Hodge being at home and Quitman playing only a varsity girls and boys game while the rest saw their junior varsity teams in action. As it turned out playing two turned out better as only Quitman High emerged victorious in both of their games, while JHHS, Weston and Saline all lost their varsity contests. 

Quitman  56 Calvin 45 (girls) Cali Deal continued her recent scoring spree and Quitman broke open a close game by outscoring home standing Calvin 14-6 in the final quarter. Deal poured in 31 points on 10 of 18 shooting from the field while also nailing 10 of 13 free throws. Her scoring outburst marked the second time in the last three games that the lanky lefthander eclipsed the 30 point barrier and upped her average to Jackson Parish best 22.9 points per game. Anna Leach also reached “double digits” in scoring with 10 points followed by Jaleigh Burns who scored seven. Taylor Borland finished with four, Ali Claire Palmer tallied two and both A.J. Gray and Morgan Cheatwood made a free throw to round out the scoring for Quitman, who improved to 7-6 on the year.The loss dropped Calvin to 7-5 and ended their three game winning streak. 

TEAM 1 2 3 4 TOTAL
Quitman (7-6) 11 11 20 14 56
Calvin (7-5) 11 9 19 6 45
QHS Scoring: Deal 31, Leach 10, Burns 7, Borland 4, Palmer 2, Gray 1, Cheatwood 1
CHS Scoring: n/a

Quitman 63 Calvin 53 (boys): The boys game played out much like the girls before as Quitman outscored the Cougars 21-14 in the final frame to break open a tight game that had eight lead changes. With four players reaching double figures in scoring, Quitman had their way inside the arc, connecting on a remarkable 17 of 23 (74%) field goals. while adding seven baskets from beyond the three point line. Logan Ponder led the balanced attack with 16 points with Eli Walker adding 14. Gavyn Caskey pitched in 13 and Noah Leach tallied 10 as Quitman became the first Jackson Parish school to win 10 games on the year. Larson Thomas also came up big with six points, his second highest total of the year, on the strength of a pair of three pointers. Braden Marten and Brayden Smith also scored two points each.

TEAM 1 2 3 4 TOTAL
Quitman (10-4) 16 15 11 21 63
Calvin (6-6) 14 17 8 14 53
QHS Scoring: Ponder 16, Walker 14, Caskey 13, Leach 10, Thomas 6, Marten 2, Smith 2
CHS Scoring: n/a

Choudrant 37 JHHS 35 (girls): McKenzie Bradford nailed three 3-pointers to lead a spirited Lady Tiger rally that came up just short as JHHS lost their fifth straight to fall ot 2-7 on the year. Class B Choudrant won their second in a row over a team from a higher classification following their victory the Tuesday before over Class 3A Union Parish to improve to 5-8 overall.Morgan McGee canned three treys in the first half to finish with a team high 11 points and Tyya Davis also ended with nine points. Jalenya Jackson finished with five and LeRonda McGuire added a free throw for JHHS. Choudrant was led by Reese Brown who scored 16 points that included six in the final frame to keep JHHS at bay.  

TEAM 1 2 3 4 TOTAL
JHHS (2-7) 8 6 6 15 35
Choudrant (5-8) 13 4 9 10 37
JHHS Scoring: McGee 11, Davis 9, Bradford 9, Jackson 5, McGuire 1
CHS Scoring: Brown 16, Pyle 9, Swift 5, Jones 4, Nugent 2

Choudrant 52 JHHS 50 (boys) Symeon Malone scored of his team tying high 10 points in the fourth quarter to pace JHHS to a 16-9 advantage in the final frame but a 19-11 third quarter by Choudrant was too much to overcome as the Tigers fell to 2-4 and saw their two game winning streak broken. Choudrant beat their fifth straight team from a higher classification won their sixth straight to improve to 9-5 on the year. Damarious Burns also finished with ten points for JH as Za’Mauryian Palmer and Landon Boston both ended with eight points on the night. Dewayne Palmer scored six, Spencer Strickland finished with four points and both Chase Leonard and Bradford tallied two each.

TEAM 1 2 3 4 TOTAL
JHHS (2-4) 9 14 11 16 50
Choudrant (9-5) 16 8 19 9 52
JHHS Scoring: Malone 10, Burns 10, Z. Palmer 8, Boston 8, D. Palmer 6 Strickland 4, Leonard 2, Bradford 2
CHS Scoring Jones 25, Soto 11, Cameo 9, Stevens 6, Cage 1

West Ouachita 54 Weston 49 (girls): Trailing 45-39, homestanding West Ouachita went on a 13 point run to steal the victory over Weston who led for most of the contest. Lainee Trosclair made four 3-pointers en route to a team high 16 points with Carly Jo Griffin adding 11 in the contest. Carlynn Waters and Anslee Aldy both scored seven followed by Lexie Millien who finished with four. Raelynn Shell and Nadia Siadek scored two each. Weston fell to 7-6 with the loss while West Ouachita won for the first time after six straight losses to open the season. 

TEAM 1 2 3 4 TOTAL
West Ouachita (1-6) 12 16 11 15 54
Weston (7-6) 11 19 13 6 49
Weston Scoring: Trosclair 16, Griffin 11, Aldy 7, Waters 7, Millien 4, Siadek 2, Shell 2
West Ouachita Scoring: n/a

West Ouachita 72 Weston 50 (boys): The homestanding Chiefs won their second straight after opening the season with six straight losses. Weston fell to 7-6 on the year after losing their third in the last four games. No individual scoring was reported.

Castor 62 Saline 51 (girls): Alaya Gray scored 11 of her team high 20 points in the fourth quarter to help Saline outscore Castor 17-14 but a 37-20 deficit at the half was too much to overcome. Kacidy Sims finished with 14 points Alana Gray added 11 for the Lady Bobcats who dropped to 4-10 on the year. Rayaunnah Pearson scored four and Jordan Williams made a basket to round out the scoring for Saline. Castor, who improved to 7-2 on the season was led by Kalena Smith who drained four 3-pointers and scored 20 in the contest while Sky McMullen and Ambree Collinsworth also reached double figures in scoring with 18 and 10 points respectively.


TEAM 1 2 3 4 TOTAL
Saline (4-10) 11 9 11 17 51
Castor (7-2) 20 17 11 14 62
Saline Scoring: Alaya Gray 20, Sims 14, Alana Gray 11, Pearson 4, Williams 2
Castor Scoring: Smith 20, McMullen 18, Collinsworth 10, Shirley 5, Jordan 4, Rice 3, Gray 2

Castor 63 Saline 40 (boys): The homestanding Tigers opened the game by taking a 13-4 lead after one and blew it open by outscoring Saline 24-13 in the final quarter A The scoring doldrums continued for the Bobcats who lost their third straight to fall to 7-6 on the year. Trent Ledbetter and Eli Ferguson both scored ten to lead the Bobcats while Gavyn Dailey ended up with eight for Saline who has now failed to score more than 46 points in their last four games. Conner Roberts and Bryce Davis finished with four each, Elijah Calloway made a three pointer and Maddox Williams sank a free throw. Castor won for the first time in five tries to improve to 3-8 on the year. 

TEAM 1 2 3 4 TOTAL
Saline (7-6) 4 15 8 13 40
Castor (3-8) 13 14 12 21 63
Saline Scoring: Ledbetter 10 Ferguson 10, Dailey 8, Roberts 4, Davis 4, Calloway 3, Williams 1
Castor Scoring: Warren 19, Gilcrease 16, Bolyer 7, Carmouche 6, Bryant 4, Austin 2, Hays 2

J-HES announces Student, Faculty and Support Staff of the Month

Jonesboro-Hodge Elementary School gives a “shout out” to the student, faculty and support staff member of the month for December. Congratulations are extended to:

December Student of the Month: Oliver Cox -2nd Grade
For excelling in his studies and always being respectful to peers and teachers.

December Faculty Member of the Month: Mrs. Alberta Foster – 3rd Grade Sci/SS
For her smooth transition to elementary from high school and positive disposition.

December Support Staff Member of the Month: Ms. Pam Jack – Paraprofessional
For always going above and beyond and being willing to help with any task.


Saline High to play Cedar Creek at Smoothie King Center in New Orleans

It is the time of the year where boys and girls all over the nation state what they want for Christmas. Then there are those private dreams of receiving something that are never declared because they know it would be seeming impossible. 

Take for instance a high school basketball player. There isn’t a one that hasn’t imagined what it would be like playing on a National Basketball Association (NBA) court. The reality is that only a handful of the millions of kids across the nation each year who have that desire will ever get the chance. It is such a longshot that to even hope for the chance is merely a “dream wish” except for the elite few.

Christmas has come early for the members of the girls and boys basketball teams at Saline High School and Cedar Creek in Ruston as on Monday, their “dream wish” was realized when it was announced that the two schools would play against each other at the Smoothie King Center, home of the New Orleans Pelicans. The  game will be played on January 5th, 2024, when first the two girls team, then the boys, will play followed by the Pelicans taking on the Los Angeles Clippers.

The contest was made available when Saline head boys basketball coach, Klint Robinson, inquired about a special “Court of Dreams” promotion being conducted by the Pelicans. Seeing what dates were available he then called and talked to Cedar Creek head boys basketball coach Lance Waldrin, to see if they would be interested in playing the game scheduled between the two in New Orleans instead of Saline that day.

“I didn’t have to try very hard to get them (Cedar Creek) to agree,” laughed Robinson. “They were excited as I was about playing in New Orleans.”

Robinson also stated how much he appreciated everyone who helped make this possible.

“I really appreciate everyone who helped make this possible and special mention needs to be given to Saline SRO, Bentley Williams, who played a big role in this.”

Saline supporters can purchase tickets by calling Saline HIgh School at (318) 576 – 3215 or by going to the school located at 1255 Cooper Street in Saline. The cost to purchase a ticket to the contests is $25.00 each, which covers all three games. Also donations to help defray the expense of the trip are being accepted.

“This is an incredible opportunity for the kids from both schools,” said Robinson. “Your help in making this dream come true would be the greatest Christmas gift ever.”

Smoothie King Center
Home of the New Orleans Pelicans


Eleven complete second EMT class of 2023

Eleven participants has successfully completed the Emergency Medical Technician (EMT) course that was taught at the Jackson Parish Ambulance Service District Training Center in Jonesboro. Each will now have the opportunity to take the NREMT testing to obtain their EMT license. 

Completing the second EMT class of 2023 was Zoie Anderson, Thomas Ashcraft, Alex Blundell, Jacob Carlton, Skyler Carson, Jeremie Dark, Natalie James, Langdon James,
Jessica Moseley, Michelle Mullins, and Crystal Williams.

“Congratulations to all who completed the EMT course. We look forward to seeing all of you continue making an impact in your community.” – JPASD


LHSAA Releases Final 2024-26 Classification Cycle

The LHSAA released its final redistricting plan for the 2024-2025 & 2025-2026 sports seasons to member schools Thursday. The plan was finalized during the association’s winter executive committee meeting on December 1st.

The committee’s decision means that for the next two athletic seasons that Jonesboro-Hodge High School will be in Class A, while Quitman and Weston remain in Class B. Neighboring schools, Saline and Dodson, will be in Class C. 

The final classification meeting proved pivotal as the committee navigated through the final appeals and hashed out district details for the upcoming cycle. LHSAA executive director Eddie Bonine stated that playoff divisions for Non-Select and Select would be announced at a later date. Member schools must ratify the current playoff structure at the organization’s annual convention in January.

For a complete view of the final draft document showing classification breakdowns by enrollment click here


Quitman High “Quest for Success” Classes tour Jackson Parish Hospital

What better place for a “Quest for Success” class to tour than the health care provider recently voted the 2023 Outstanding Rural Health Organization in the state of Louisiana?

On November 28th, the “Quest for Success” classes at Quitman High School visited the Jackson Parish Hospital where the administration and staff of the 2023 Louisiana Rural Health Association award winner gave these exceptional students a tour of the facilities and demonstrated the many different facets of healthcare. 


Area Anglers Will Benefit From Latest Bass Stocking

Another quantum leap in the effort to improve bass fishing in Northwest Louisiana took place this past week when the Red River Waterway Commission (RRWC) teamed with the Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries (LDWF) to finish the last session of the 2023 Bass Stocking Program into Red River.

In this latest session, it’s reported the RRWC strategically released 100,000 bass fingerlings into Pools 1-5 of the Red River. Of these fingerlings, 90% or 90,000 were Florida bass and the remaining 10% or 10,000 were true F1 “Tiger Bass.”

What’s The Difference Between a “Florida Bass” And An “F-1 Tiger Bass”?

Americansportfish.com has this to say about these Tiger Bass which have been known to be extremely aggressive and relatively easy to catch by bass fishermen on artificial lures.

“Created by our team of scientists, the Tiger Bass® has been specially bred for aggressiveness and fast growth. In well-managed lakes, they have consistently gained more than two pounds per year. Biologists refer to this fish as a true F-1, because it is a cross between two pure subspecies of bass: a special strain of aggressive Northern Bass and a pure strain of Florida Bass that comes from a proven trophy line.”

The site goes on to say that “Tiger Bass have already gained weight of 15 pounds in eight years. We expect them to break state records in the next several years.”

The RRWC states that the goal of this latest stocking is to introduce the Florida bass genetics to the population and provide overall improvement to the fishery which was essentially decimated after the high water flood events of 2015 and 2016. This is incredible news for area anglers who long for the days when Red River was an amazing fishery.

 

 

 

 


A House Without a Christmas Tree

For much of the English-speaking world, the tradition of decorating a Christmas tree inside the home became popular in the Victorian era. For hundreds of years, people had decorated Christmas trees, but they were kept outside. Prior to 1840, when Queen Victoria married her German-born cousin Prince Albert, indoor Christmas trees were normally a tradition only held by the royal family. A few upper-class families adopted the tradition, but the popularity of indoor decorated Christmas trees quickly spread when commoners saw an etching of Queen Victoria, Prince Albert, and their children celebrating around a festively decorated tree. Other countries, including the United States, quickly adopted the tradition. Everyone, it seemed, wanted to celebrate in the same fashion as the royal family. Well, almost everyone.

In September of 1901, Junior, his second wife Edith, and four of their children, Kermit, Ethel, Archibald, and Quentin, moved into a new-to-them house. The house was over a hundred years old when they moved in. Junior and his family loved to celebrate Christmas, but they had never adopted the tradition of having a decorated Christmas tree in the home. Although his children would certainly have enjoyed a festively decorated Christmas tree with all the trimmings, Junior ultimately decided not to get a tree. Junior had nothing against Christmas trees in particular, there was just not enough room in the home for a tree. Can you imagine not having a Christmas tree as part of your holiday decor?

Late in the afternoon on Christmas day, Junior and his family gathered around the table for Christmas dinner. As Edith and the children looked on with watering mouths, Junior carved the 32-pound turkey. After they ate their fill of turkey and all the trimmings, they turned their attention to the mince and pumpkin pies. What a feast it was.

Not wanting his children to miss out on the Christmas tree tradition altogether, Junior found a solution. Following Christmas dinner, Junior made some excuse and conveniently disappeared. Edith and the children took a carriage to the nearby home of Junior’s sister and brother-in-law, Anna—they called her Bamie—and William Cowles. The two families, minus Junior, were enjoying a festive celebration around the cedar Christmas tree complete with red, white, and blue electric lights when they had a visit from Santa Claus. He had white hair, white beard, and belted out the unmistakable “Ho! Ho! Ho!” However, this Santa had no red suit and hat lined with white fur as we would expect. He wore the khaki uniform of a soldier and a sombrero pulled down low over his eyes. Santa passed out a large number of presents to the children, then they all joined in games and the telling of ghost stories over snacks. As the celebration was winding down, the unusually dressed Santa Claus said a final “Ho! Ho! Ho!” and made a hasty exit. Edith and the children said their goodbyes, wished each other “Merry Christmas,” and returned to their house. With a twinkle in his eye, Junior met them at the door and asked for details of their celebration at the Cowles’ home, which they were only too eager to share. Even without a Christmas tree in their new-to-them house, Junior, Edith, and the children had a most memorable Christmas together.

The home that Junior and his family moved into, which Junior deemed not large for a Christmas tree, now includes just under 100 Christmas trees as part of its annual holiday décor. The house had plenty of rooms to be sure, but Junior was so popular and received so many visitors on a daily basis that all the rooms were required for guests. The house is still popular with guests. Visitors wanting to get a glimpse inside the house must apply months in advance for the chance to take a tour. The Santa Claus that joined the celebration at the Cowles residence was wearing, not a traditional Santa suit, but the uniform of a Rough Rider. Junior, the 26th president of the United States, was Theodore Roosevelt. The house without room for a Christmas tree was the White House.


Eldonta Osborne earns prestigious award

Jonesboro native and 1984 JHHS graduate Eldonta Osborne has been named recipient of the prestigious 2023 Glen Permuy Contribution to the Profession Award” from the Professional Association of the Boys & Girls Clubs.

This award is presented to the person who has made a significant contribution towards the advancement of the Boys & Girls Club Movement during the course of their career.

This is the second award this year received by Osborne, Chief Executive Officer of the Boys & Girls Clubs of North Louisiana. In March Osborne also received the 2023 Herman S. Prescott Award from Boys & Girls Club of America.

The Herman S. Prescott Award is presented to an individual from all five regions of the Boys & Girls Club of America. Osborne was selected as this year’s recipient for the Southeast Region and later named the national recipient of the award. This honor is given to a member of The Professional Association whose service emulates that of one of the great visionaries of the Boys & Girls Club, Herman S. Prescott.

Osborne has served as the CEO of the Boys and Girls Club of the North Central region since 2001. In 2017, he agreed to expand his duties as CEO of the Northeast Region and has worked tirelessly to merge the two clubs into one.

The newly-created North Louisiana region is made up of the North Central organization, located in Ruston, and the Northeast organization, located in West Monroe. There are eight total units under the two organizations with plans to grow under Osborne’s leadership.

 


State Farm Insurance named Chamber of Commerce Business of the Month

State Farm Insurance has been selected as the Jackson Parish Chamber of Commerce Business of the Month for December. Owned and operated by Shawn Murphy, State Farm, located at 826 Pershing Hwy in Jonesboro, has played a vital role for the insurance needs of Jackson Parish residents for decades as well as providing support to the JPCC and the community. 

Shown in the banner above is:
Left to right back row: Karen Sullivan Radford, Cody Cheatwood, John R Williams, chamber board member
Left or right front row : Deborah Hargrove Fordham, Shawn Murphy, Cheri Jo Harveston, Yumeaka Washington, Chamber President


Diabetes Awareness Month holds special meaning at Grace Christian Academy

GCA students and staff shows support for classmate Brody Halbrook (second to left)

As November came to a close, Grace Christian Academy students and staff recognized Diabetes Awareness month by wearing blue. Diabetes Awareness holds a special place in their hearts as one of their own, Brody Holbrook, faces the difficulties of Type 1 Diabetes daily.

To show their support, November 30th was dedicated to Brody through the idea of friends and classmates. Support bracelets for all students were made up and Brody’s class enjoyed one of his favorite snacks: sugar free brownies and Coke Zero.

“Brody never has to face this battle alone because his GCA family is covering him in prayer.” – Mrs. Anita


JPASD Employee Spotlight: Kay Caldwell – Paramedic

In an effort to introduce those who are so important to the residents of Jackson Parish during critical times, the Jackson Parish Ambulance Service District (JPASD) is pleased to shine their Employee Spotlight on Paramedic, Kay Caldwell. 

Kay worked as a Potter for 11 years before making her career move into Emergency Medical Services (EMS) in 2000. Since then, she has exemplified professionalism as a Paramedic while serving her community as well as the state of Louisiana. For the last two years Kay has also provided oversight as one of the Supervisors for JPASD and this year alone has responded to 442 requests of patients in need of medical assistance. 

An integral part of the JPASD Disaster Strike Team, Kay has responded to multiple state and federal natural disasters, most recently in 2023 when she was deployed for nearly six weeks to Merryville, LA. There she was tasked with providing EMS services for the teams of collected special forces from around the country at the Tiger Island Wildfires that destroyed more than 31,000 acres. Kay was also activated on the Hurricane Ida disaster assignment in 2021 where for six weeks her unit responded to an overwhelmed 911 system in Cameron Parish. 

When not at work, Kay relishes the time she gets to spend with her husband of 30 years, Larry, and her three children Ashley, Haley and Nicholas as well as her five grandchildren. Kay also loves to travel and is always looking for the next destination or cruise ship voyage to a sunny island as well as enjoying time lounging by the pool and reading a good book.  


Ponderings…..

I started Monday with a trip to the doctor. There is nothing wrong. I was there for my 250,000 mile checkup. Because I have reached my “golden years” they asked me some unfamiliar questions.

The question that threw me off was, “have you fallen recently?” I try not to fall. In the years since I was a younger man, gravity has become stronger. In High School I could dunk a volleyball. I never could get enough air to dunk a basketball, but I was so close. I could run like the wind. I got knocked down a great deal on Friday nights. Yes, I played football! Now if I were to try to jump at all, the results would be hilariously embarrassing. And the only wind I feel now is the kind that God sends. Now, I am watching football.

My current reality is I will miss a step on the ladder. I get tangled up with all the plants on the floor of my greenhouse. I know I have too many plants, because my 10’ x 20’ green house is full. I stumble but I don’t fall. I spill things in the kitchen, but I don’t fall. I trip sometimes but I don’t fall. Yet.

I know why they asked the question. At my age, that hurt to type, falls become an issue. There are many reasons a person might fall and there are definite consequences of falling.

I started thinking about falling. Humpty Dumpty fell off the wall and bad things happened. He was so smashed up all the governmental programs and personnel could not put him back together. When the stock market falls my wallet and future are imperiled. There are times clothes will fall, that is called a wardrobe malfunction. We used to call it flashing, but us ancient people are not cultured, civilized, or politically correct.

Falling can be good. If a few pounds fall off, that is good. Your numbers might fall and that would be another good thing. What about falling in love? That can be a good, bad, or complicated thing.

There is a whole season dedicated to fall. It is called fall. I remind people it is not called rake, mulch, or burn. It is called fall, and the leaves are beautiful and obedient. Leave the leaves in their fallen condition, your lawn will thank you in the spring. I can’t verify what your neighbors might think about it, but the grass will love it.

Falling is also theological. Since the Garden of Eden, we humans are said to be in a fallen state because of sin. There is one more theological insight about falling.

Jesus said, “Therefore everyone who hears these words of mine and puts them into practice is like a wise man who built his house on the rock. The rain came down, the streams rose, and the winds blew and beat against that house; yet it did not fall, because it had its foundation on the rock. But everyone who hears these words of mine and does not put them into practice is like a foolish man who built his house on sand. The rain came down, the streams rose, and the winds blew and beat against that house, and it fell with a great crash.”

Have you fallen recently?


Jonesboro Study Guild Holds Musical Meeting

(l-r) Glo Weaver, “Lady Chops” Elizabeth Vidos
photo courtesy of Wilda Smith

An entertaining program by Elizabeth Vidos, “ Lady Chops”, brought the sound of music to the Jonesboro Study Guild during their monthly meeting that was hosted by Rosemary Ewing on November 27th. 

After JSG President, Christie Weeks, called the meeting to order, Glo Weaver introduced “Lady Chops” to the rest of the members in attendance which included Donna Avery, May Saulters, Paula Jimmerson, Kathy Allen, Jolene Carson, Mary Cryer, Dawna Keys, JoAnn T eat, and Wilda Smith. In additional action the JSG agreed to donate money in order to give a Christmas donation to DART.

 


Students enjoy Saturday School at Jonesboro-Hodge Elementary

On Saturday, December 2, Jonesboro-Hodge Elementary School (J-HES) held a FUN Saturday School with targeted small-group instruction in ELA, Math, Science, and Social Studies. Students also received an hour of Physical Education with a focus on Yoga. The morning of fun learning was finished with a tasty lunch courtesy of Diggidy Dawgs!

Special thanks to our dedicated teachers and counselor: Ms. LaJulia Blankenship, Ms. Lauren Bennett, Ms. Linda Melton, Ms. Sarah White and Mrs. Tristen Bergholtz for making this session possible.

*Parent/Guardians: Please be on the lookout for future Saturday School Sessions courtesy of the Reimagine Wraparound Grant.


Daily Devotional by Pam Ford Davis

Precious Memories

Through imagination, I spend Christmas Eve with the Waltons. The children have a strong bond with Daddy John; Mama Olivia, Grandpa Zeb and Grandma Esther. Enduring love and commitment keep them together. They exchange simple gifts and have their fill of fresh baked cake, pies and cookies. Older girls, Mary Ellen and Erin make chocolate fudge; while youngest Jim Bob and Elizabeth wait to lick the bowl. Through precious memories, I spend Christmas Eve with the Fords.

My family included Dad Frank, Mom Betty, sisters Donna, Laureen, Gayla and brother Gary. Unlike the Waltons, Gramma and Grampa (I never called them Grandma and Grandpa) didn’t live with us but were very close by. They were only 2 houses away. Aging, they had moved in with Uncle Wallace and Aunt Jessie Ford. I remember looking through window panes anxiously awaiting their Christmas Eve visit. A brief walk in the Mycenae snow brought all of them to our house.

A group of excited shepherds walked to the Bethlehem stable.

“And suddenly there was with the angel a multitude of the heavenly host praising God, and saying,

Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace, good will toward men.

And it came to pass, as the angels were gone away from them into heaven, the shepherds said one to another, Let us now go even unto Bethlehem, and see this thing which is come to pass, which the Lord hath made known unto us.

And they came with haste, and found Mary, and Joseph, and the babe lying in a manger (Luke 2:13-16 KJV).”


Job Opportunities, Business Services, Items for Sale, Public / Legal Notices

To have your Business Services, Job Opportunities, Items for sale, and Public / Legal Notices published – send an email to: jpjjacksonla@gmail.com. Possible costs are dependent on content. 

ITEMS FOR SALE

100 Year History of JHHS Football – Wonderful Christmas gift for father, son, brother, uncle or just a great friend. Relive the memories, players and teams in this comprehensive season-by-season review of Jonesboro-Hodge High School football from 1919 – 2019. Cost of book is $25.00 each or $40.00 for two. Free shipping. To order call 318-480-1206 or send email to jpjjacksonla@gmail.com

AFFIDAVIT OF SUCCESSION

PUBLIC NOTICE

Jackson Parish School Board Meeting Minutes
December 4, 2023

The Jackson Parish School Board met in regular session at 11:00 a.m. on December 4, 2023 at Jackson Parish School Board, 315 Pershing Highway, Jonesboro, La.

The following were present for roll call: Calvin Waggoner, Dennis Clary, Paulette Belton, Rick Barlow, Gerry Mims, Mary Saulters and Wade McBride

Absent: None

May Saulters gave the Invocation.

Paulette Belton led in the Pledge of Allegiance.

The meeting was called to order by Calvin Waggoner.

Motion was made by Mary Saulters, seconded by Wade McBride and carried to approve the minutes as presented from the Regular Scheduled Meeting held on November 6, 2023.

The Board recognized Amy Hay who presented information on 2022-2023 School Performance Scores.

A motion was made by Dennis Clary to name Mary Saulters as Vice-President for 2024. A motion was made by Wade McBride to name Gerry Mims as Vice-President for 2024. A roll call was taken with the following votes cast:
Gerry Mims – Calvin Waggoner, Wade McBride, Rick Barlow, Gerry Mims, Paulette Belton
Mary Saulters – Dennis Clary and Mary Saulters

Gerry Mims was named Vice-President for 2024.

Dennis Clary reported to the Board on the meeting of the Executive Finance Committee held prior to the Board meeting.

A motion was made by Mary Saulters, seconded by Rick Barlow and carried to approve for payment the following bills: General Fund, Federal Program, School Food Service, Sales Tax, Special Education, District Maintenance bills.

A motion was made by Wade McBride, seconded by Paulette Belton and carried to approve payment to D2I in the amount of $19,250.00 for our District Annual Data Package that assists in analyzing data-driven school improvement plans, January 1, 2024 – December 31, 2024, to be paid from 2023-2024 ESSER III funds.

A motion was made by Mary Saulters, seconded by Rick Barlow and carried approving the Differentiated Compensation Allocation stipend for the fiscal year 2023-2024 to be paid to highly effective teachers (using the 2022-2023 evaluation ratings). The total allocation for this funding is $76,414, to be paid from the Differentiated Compensation Allocation fund.

Presentation of Monthly Financial Report by Kristi Bass, Business Manager.

Wade McBride reported to the Board on the meeting of the Building and Grounds Committee held prior to the Board meeting.

A motion was made by Rick Barlow, seconded by Gerry Mims and carried accepting low quote of $193,380.00 from Regional Construction, LLC for site preparation for the Weston High School Baseball and Softball Complex renovations, to be paid from Weston District funds. (Pending Act 397 funding)

A motion was made by Rick Barlow, seconded by Paulette Belton and carried approving Change Order No. 1 from Regional Construction, LLC for site preparation for the Weston High School Baseball and Softball Complex renovations to reduce the cost of total project by $36,780.00.

A motion was made by Gerry Mims, seconded by Rick Barlow and carried accepting low quote of $109,387.76 from Canon Services for materials and labor to replace cooler and freezer equipment at all schools and Central Office, to be paid from School Food Service funds.

A motion was made by Gerry Mims, seconded by Rick Barlow and carried to adjourn at 11:25 a.m.

Death Notice

Mary Margurite Harvey
July 20, 1923 – December 3, 2023

rosesMary Margurite Harvey passed away on Sunday, December 3, 2023 at Rolling Brook Nursing Home in Baytown, Texas. She was 100 years old and originally from Jackson Parish.

Friends may visit with the family on Saturday, December 9, 2023 at Southern-Edmonds Funeral Home Chapel in Jonesboro, Louisiana, from 12:00 PM until 2:00 PM. The funeral procession will travel to Antioch Cemetery near Quitman, Louisiana for a graveside service to begin at approximately 2:15 PM. under the direction of Southern-Edmonds Funeral Home. Bro. Craig Stevens will officiate.

Arthur Jr. Livingston
January 26, 1942 – December 3, 2023

livingstonArthur Jr. Livingston received his heavenly reward on December 3, 2023, after 80 eventful years on this earth. Visitation for family and friends will be from 4:00 – 6:00 pm on Friday, December 8th at the Paradise Funeral Home in Jonesboro. 

His Celebration of Life service will take place at 11:00 am on Saturday, December 9th, at the St. Rest Baptist Church in Quitman. Burial will follow in the Mt. Zion Cemetery in Quitman  under the direction of Paradise Funeral Home in Jonesboro.


Village of Chatham to hold third annual Christmas Tree Lighting

The Village of Chatham will hold their third annual Christmas Tree Lighting on Saturday, December 9th. The holiday spirit filled event that will take place in the open area on the corner of Hwy 34 and Hwy 4 beside J&H Cooking will begin with music and entertainment at 5:30 pm followed by the traditional lighting of the tree at 6:00 pm.

“We are looking forward to see all our residents of Chatham and the surrounding area to come and help us celebrate this always entertaining event,” said Chatham Mayor Gregory Harris.