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New assistant superintendent, principals chosen

John Young to take No. 2 helm in LPSB central office
Thursday, May 6, 2021
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A slate of new school and central office administrators were introduced to the Lincoln Parish School Board at Tuesday’s regular meeting, and in each case the new positions will be a homecoming of sorts for those who have accepted them.

John Young, principal of Ruston Junior High School, has been chosen to replace the retiring Lisa Bastion as assistant superintendent and chief administrative and operations officer for the district, becoming the new No. 2 behind firstyear Superintendent Ricky Durrett.

Meanwhile, I.A. Lewis School Principal Keshia Douglas will be reassigned to replace Young at the helm of RJHS. Finally, Glen View Elementary School Coordinating Teacher Jennifer Martin has been chosen for the principal’s desk at Choudrant Elementary School, replacing the retiring Charles Hogan.

A former East Iberville Parish educator, Young spent three years as principal at I.A. Lewis and another three years leading RJHS. But his Lincoln Parish roots go much deeper than that.

“For me, it’s kind of everything coming to fruition,” Young told the board Tuesday. “Being from Lincoln Parish, my dad drove Bus 47 here for 30 years. My uncle was a coach at Ruston Junior High and Glen View.

“I’m excited to get to work with all of our schools to make Lincoln Parish a better place.”

Multiple board members told stories of Young’s father and grandfather driving the bus, with either the board members themselves or their children on board.

Durrett said when he was principal at Ruston High School he wanted Young as his assistant principal since he first interviewed for a job in the parish.

“I don’t think we could have gotten a better candidate or person for this job,” Durrett said.

It was announced last month that Bastion will be retiring in a year. In the meantime, she’s been reassigned to handle the COVID-19 relief money coming the district’s way from the federal government and train Young on the ins and outs of her former post.

Douglas’ new stint at RJHS will not be her first. She’s been principal at I.A. Lewis for three years but served as assistant principal at the junior high for seven years before that.

“It has truly been a wonderful experience, and I’m just excited about returning back to Ruston Junior High School and continuing my profession,” she said.

Her old post at I.A. Lewis will now be advertised, and Durrett said a new principal should be found by the end of May.

Lastly, Martin was unanimously recommended by the interview committee for the Choudrant Elementary job out of a large applicant pool.

She’s taught in the district for 18 years, and this position will be a return to her first school as well.

“I’m excited about being in the Choudrant community again,” she said. “I look forward to working with our teachers, students and all the other stakeholders to make it even better than it already is.”