Education notebook: 2 LRSD finalists schedule visits

Education notebook: 2 LRSD finalists schedule visits

em {
display: contents !important;
label em {
display: none !important;
.photo {
width: 100%;
max-width: 50rem
} {
color: #0274b7 !important;

2 LRSD finalists

schedule visits

The two finalists for the job of Little Rock School District superintendent will visit the capital city school system for in-person interviews with the School Board and others during the week of April 18.

Jermall Wright, superintendent of the Mississippi Achievement School District and a former chief academic officer in Birmingham, Ala., is scheduled to be in Little Rock on April 18.

George “Eric” Thomas, affiliated with the University of Virginia’s education leadership development program and a former deputy superintendent/chief turnaround officer for the Georgia Board of Education, has a Little Rock visit set for April 20.

Little Rock district leaders on Friday were developing specific plans for the candidates’ time in the district. Those plans are expected to include sessions in which the public, district employees, and representatives of community organizations and businesses can meet the finalists.

3,300 students got gift cards for shots

The Little Rock School District’s plan to offer $50 gift cards from Walmart as an incentive to students to become fully vaccinated against the covid-19 virus attracted approximately 3,300 takers from among the district’s 21,000 students.

A divided Little Rock School Board voted 6-3 in January to offer the incentive to all students who could show they were fully vaccinated by March 18.

The plan required families that wanted the vaccination incentive to register their child’s covid-19 vaccinations in a confidential manner with their school nurse.

District leaders submitted final paperwork to the company on Friday in preparation for receiving the cards and distributing them at a date not yet set. The district will use federal covid relief money to pay for the cards.

A district statement released by Communications Director Pamela Smith on Friday said: “We had about 85-90% of employees get vaccinated. While the student number might not have been what we hoped, we believe the incentive served its purpose — a large percentage of students were vaccinated as a result.”

Last year, the Little Rock district offered $300 to every district employee who was fully vaccinated against covid-19 by Oct. 1.

After the Oct. 1 deadline, the district reported that it paid out $1,110,971 to approximately 2,700 employees who provided vaccination proof.

The $300 vaccination incentive went to about 84% of the district’s 3,200 employees.

Superintendent Mike Poore at the time called that response “outstanding.”

Jostens to sponsor #HeartATeacher

Jostens, a Minnesota-based company that provides jewelry, graduation products and yearbooks for general and higher education systems, is sponsoring #HeartATeacher initiative that enables students, parents, and co-workers to honor a school faculty member.

“Teachers are an invaluable resource, leaving an immeasurable impact on our lives. Especially in recent years, a lot has been asked of educators and their patience and adaptability have been incredible,” said Michael Wolf, vice president of Jostens Renaissance Education. “This campaign gives all of us a chance to say thanks and recognize the amazing efforts of a teacher that’s had an impact. Jostens is excited to host a sweepstakes and award prizes to 50 nominated teachers.”

To nominate a teacher into the #HeartATeacher sweepstakes, participants can post a submission thanking a specific teacher, tagging @JostensInc on Instagram and @Jostens on Facebook, Twitter and TikTok using the #HeartATeacher hashtag.

The sweepstakes submission period ends on May 6. Fifty nominated teachers will be selected to receive a $200 cash prize and a Jostens ring valued at $500. The official sweepstakes rules can be found at this link:

Leave a Reply