Thursday, September 6, 2007

Ashdown School District om Ashdown, AR

Ashdown Public Schools
511 N. 2nd Street
Ashdown, Arkansas


The Ashdown School District

The Ashdown School District has an enrollment of 1650 -1700 students with 260 staff members. The district is composed of six student campuses, a Central Office, a Community Enrichment Center, and a Support Services building. Mike Walker is the current Superintendent. The School Board members are Chuck Davis, Weldon Garrison, Dorothy Henderson, Milton Higginbotham, Raymond Latson, Imogene Mize, and Ricky Ward.

Margaret Daniel Primary was named after an Ashdown teacher, principal and Arkansas Teacher of the Year, Margaret Daniel. The brick building was built in 1973. The building houses pre-school, kindergarten and 1st grade classrooms. A large cafetorium serves Margaret Daniel Primary and C.D. Franks Elementary Schools. Barbara Prather was the first administrator and Mrs. Kay York is the principal now.

C.D. Franks Elementary School was named for longtime superintendent, C. D. Franks. The brick, 28,600 sq. foot building was built in 1970 on property purchased from the Rural Development Authority. The building’s design was innovative for the time with a core area consisting of the office, a library, and cafeteria with open classrooms around the perimeter of the core area. The building accommodates grades 2-4. Dr. L.F. Henderson was the first principal. James Jones is the current principal.

L.F. Henderson Intermediate School is located on the site of the old Burke Street School.

The property was acquired from Lillard Johnson and the town of Ashdown in 1911 and 1915 respectfully. The campus included a 2,700 sq. foot addition built in 1951 to serve 3 first grade classrooms. That addition and the old building were used until the old wooden structure was demolished and the new building was erected in 1964. The first wing of the new brick building contained classrooms and a cafeteria with 16,744 sq. feet. In 1967 a north wing was added with an additional 25,086 sq. feet in classrooms. Adjoining property was purchased from Doyt Isley and Mary Taylor in 1966. Temporary metal buildings were added in 1967 and 68 to house classes during the sudden growth of the population in Ashdown. A gym has been added to the property and a connecting structure between the north and south wings. The campus serves children in grades 5 and 6. Mrs. Margaret Daniel was the first principal and the current principal is Keith Fricks.

Ashdown Public Schools built a Jr. High building to contain grades 7, 8, and 9 in 1979 on land acquired from H.P. Haizlip in 1925, Randall Hagan and Mark Wilcocx. The building has had further additions since it was built and a renovation was done in 2005. The campus serves 400 students. The first principal in the new building was Dr. Peggy Dildy and the current administrator is Lin Johnson and the Dean of Students is Tracy Forte.

The current High School building was constructed in 1954 after the old building burned during the Christmas holidays in 1953. The site was purchased from the Chappelles and further property was purchased from John Keck, Ordo Tremblay, Kenneth Turk, and B.W. Spigner. The new building was state of the art with typical 60’s décor. The campus has had additions of a cafeteria in 1957, a senior building and a science building in 1967, a new gym in 1970, a vocational shop, and band building in 1973, an annex to the senior building in 1988 and additional buildings to support the athletic program in 1995, 1999, and 2002. The current main building has been renovated to improve energy efficiency. The first principal to serve in the new building was Reo Flarety. The current administrators are John Crowder, Principal, and Brian Ledford, Assistant Principal.

The New Traditions School is located at the former Community Building in downtown Ashdown. The program is an alternative type of education for students who can’t make it in a traditional learning situation. The building has been renovated and serves about 30 students at a time. Linda Walker is the Principal.

The School District expanded its programs to reach parents and to involve them in the education of their children by purchasing the former Arkla Gas Building in 1995 and beginning one of the first school family resource centers in Arkansas. The Community Enrichment Center provides families with referral services, enrichment materials, preschool training and services, GED classes, and other related activities for the community. The Family and Community Relations Director is Susan Simmons.

In 2003 the district purchased the building occupied by the Ford dealership to provide needed space to house the transportation and technology departments and the Food Service office and distribution center. This addition to the district’s property allowed more efficient and timely operations of these departments with its 58 staff members. Dean Lillard is the District Services Director.


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