Fully Refurbished Campus to Open as New Live Oak Junior High

Fully Refurbished Campus to Open as New Live Oak Junior High
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For Immediate Release – Aug. 7, 2017

Contact: Delia Taylor, APR, at 225-931-0285 or taylormedia@bellsouth.net, Superintendent Rick Wentzel at 225-686-7044, or Live Oak Junior High Principal Daniel Desselle at 225-667-4195 or daniel.desselle@lpsb.org.


Fully Refurbished Campus to

Open as New Live Oak Junior High

Seventh and Eighth Graders to Attend New Campus, Grades at Other Live Oak Campuses Reconfigured to Manage Overcrowding


‚Äč WATSON, LA – Seventh and eighth grade students in the Live Oak community will attend a new, but somewhat familiar, campus come their first day of school on Aug. 9.  They will be welcomed to the new Live Oak Junior High at 35086 Old Highway 16 – the site that for many years was the original Live Oak High School.

The campus became dormant 2 ½ years ago when the new Live Oak High School campus opened on Highway 16, and all Live Oak students in grades 9-12 were transferred to the new site.  The district initiated plans right away to fully renovate the campus and convert it into a junior high school; however, those efforts were significantly sidetracked when the August 2016 flood hit, forcing school officials to prioritize emergency needs and surmounting repairs at other populated campuses across the parish.

“While we were forced to prioritize our efforts elsewhere, we never abandoned this project.  We have worked diligently with the contractor to get back on schedule to refurbish this campus so we can bring much-needed relief to the overcrowding situation in our Live Oak schools,” Superintendent Rick Wentzel said. 

“Much thanks and credit goes out to Principal Daniel Desselle and his staff for putting in long hours this summer to get the campus ready to open on Aug. 9,” Wentzel added.  “It’s been a real team effort and a willingness of so many to do whatever has been needed to get the school ready.”

Wentzel, Assistant Superintendent Joe Murphy and Assistant Superintendent Stephen Parrill joined Desselle, many of the school’s teachers and staff, and district warehouse workers on Saturday (Aug. 5) to unload filing cabinets, desks and chairs from moving trucks and set them up in the various classrooms.

“The supply company would have set everything up, but we knew the job was too big for the movers to get everything done as quickly as we needed it.  So we all showed up, rolled up our sleeves, got a little dirty and got the job done,” Wentzel said.  “That’s been standard operating procedure around here since the flood, and it’s how we’re able to do what we do.”

Parrill noted that the opening of Live Oak Junior High will create some grade restructuring at the other campuses in the area.  Live Oak students going into 5th grade this school year will join 6th grade students at Live Oak Middle School, while the three elementary campuses – Live Oak Elementary, North Live Oak Elementary and South Live Oak Elementary – will only house students in grades Pre-K to 4th grade.

“This reconfiguration allows us to relieve overcrowding at all our lower class grades in the area,” Parrill said.  “By creating more educational space and improving classroom size, we can further enhance the learning environments at these schools.”

Parrill encouraged parents to visit the district website at www.lpsb.org to determine their child’s appropriate bus route and schedule, as well as the take-in and release times at each campus.

Wentzel noted that the main campus of the new Live Oak Junior High did not flood in August 2016; so all the improvements made to the campus were part of the original reconstruction plans.  The school’s athletic field house and band room did suffer some minor water damage, which has been repaired, he said. 

The most noticeable improvements to the campus are its new brick façade and archways, wrought iron fencing and beautified common spaces. The school also has an expanded cafeteria and band room, new library, updated classrooms with better lighting, air conditioning, and greater capacity for wireless access, as well as clean, well-lit hallways and fully-retrofitted gymnasiums that can function as community shelters in the event of an emergency or natural disaster.

    “Part of our plans for this school from its inception was to work with FEMA and the Livingston Parish Office of Homeland Security & Emergency Preparedness to upgrade the school’s two gymnasiums to serve as community shelters in the event of an emergency,” Wentzel said.  The main gym and auxiliary gym received air conditioning, retrofitted windows and doors, and storm shutters as part of standard shelter requirements. 

Assistant Superintendent Stephen Parrill pushes a moving dolly loaded with a new office desk past the window-laden wall of Live Oak Junior High’s newly expanded cafeteria and the newly sodded outdoor commons area. 

Live Oak Junior High Principal Daniel Desselle (left) and Football Coach Shane Wells (right) set up a desk in the office of the school’s newly refurbished library.  School staff and teachers, along with district workers and administrators, unloaded and set up nearly 90 storage and filing cabinets, 36 desks and 30 chairs that were delivered to the school on Saturday (Aug. 5) by Louisiana Office Supply Company.

Louisiana Office Supply Company employee Jaleen Brock unloads new cabinets, desks and chairs from a company moving van on Saturday (Aug. 5), to go into the new Live Oak Junior High School.

Livingston Parish School District Warehouse Worker D.L. King (left) and Live Oak Junior High Custodian Ken Browning (right) lift newly purchased filing cabinets onto moving dollies and transport them to refurbished classrooms at Live Oak Junior High this past Saturday (Aug. 5) in an effort to have the school ready for the first day of classes. 

Notice of Discrimination

The Livingston Parish School Board does not discriminate on the basis of age, race, religion, national origin, disability or gender in its educational programs and activities (including employment and application for employment), and it is prohibited from discriminating on the basis of gender by Title IX (20 USC 168) and on the basis of disability by Section 504 (42 USC 794). The Title IX Coordinator is Stephen Parrill

Livingston Parish Public Schools is committed to ensuring that all websites and web applications, both public-facing and for internal use, conform to Web Content Accessibility Guidelines (W.C.A.G.) 2.0 Level AA. Any issues should be reported toLPWebAccessibility@lpsb.org. (stephen.parrill@lpsb.org), Assistant Superintendent, P.O. Box 1130, Livingston, LA 70754; Phone (225) 686-7044. The Special Education Director is Dr. Eric Penalber (eric.penalber@lpsb.org); the LPPS 504 Coordinator is Monica Sullivan (monica.sullivan33@lpsb.org), P.O. Box 1130 Livingston, LA 70754; Phone (225)686-4248.

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