Next step for supporters of SE breakaway district

BATON ROUGE, LA (WAFB) - Those in favor of a breakaway Southeast Baton Rouge School District may have another option. The proposal has failed the past two years, but the group behind it is still not giving up.

"We were successful in 9 out 10 of the steps required to pass. And the tenth step did not fail. We just chose not to run it," said Norman Browning, president of Local Schools for Local Children.

Browning says the bill creating the southeast breakaway school district passed in the house and senate, and he says the governor should sign it into effect. Sen. Bodi White pulled the companion bill that would put using state education dollars to fund the district on a statewide ballot. White believed he did not have enough support, but Browning says that does not mean their fight is over.

"We have the option of running that bill next year. Or the option that you've heard most recently....that of incorporating," said Browning.

Browning says they are not sure what parts of town the incorporated area would include or even if they're ready to go that route.

"I don't think that really changes anything," said David Tatman, East Baton Rouge School Board president. "I think all of the financial impact data remains the same."

Tatman hopes they won't have to consider the potential impacts and educators and parents in the entire city can come together.

"Strong education systems are always backed by strong community efforts. We just think that if everybody put their collective efforts together, we would be one of the best districts in the whole state," said Tatman.

Tatman says overall this session was good for the state's school systems.

Norman says the group in favor the breakaway district will have a public meeting next week.

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