ASCENSION PARISH, LA (WAFB) - There is sign of hope and progress for thousands of Ascension Parish students and teachers displaced after the August flood. The school board voted unanimously to move forward with the design and planning for temporary buildings at flood impacted schools that would help return to familiar territory sooner than expected.
St. Amant Primary kindergartners are learning a thing or two about spelling and sounding out words. But they are learning a lot more than what is found in their teacher's lesson plan.
They are attending class in unfamiliar territory. They are among 5,000 Ascension Parish students attending classes at different schools since the flood.
G.W. Carver and the former River Parish Community College Campus (RPCC) are St. Amant Primary's temporary homes. Principal, Paisley Morgan, said having her students and staff at two different campuses has been challenging.
"The word of the day is, divide and conquer. My assistant principal stays at Carver Primary and I stay at RPCC's old campus, and we toggle back and forth because we miss our students and our faculty," Morgan said.
For the most part, Morgan said, the little ones have made themselves at home in their new environments.
"We are patient, learning patience through this process but we are willing to wait as long as we need to make sure our campus is up and running safely for our students," Morgan said.
Ascension Parish School Superintendent David Alexander has asked the school board to approve a plan that would get the ball rolling on a design plan for temporary buildings on the five campuses that flooded.
"There are a lot of pieces that we still have to assess. Like where do we put these temporary buildings? Does every site have room for temporary buildings," Alexander said.
While the school system's immediate plan appears to be working, it has meant schedule changes and longer days for some. Alexander admits it is less than ideal but he hopes the experience will help them grow.
"You know, in so many ways, this is part of the learning process," Alexander said.
There is not yet a timeline for the T-buildings.