Central Private School returned to previously flooded campus to finish the school year

Located in Central between Blackwater and Joor Road, Central Private School kicked off its 49th school year on August 11, 2016, for PreK through 12th grades. As rain came down the next morning, news of school closure reached students, teachers, and staff.
No one anticipated that as the rain continued, water would spread over the campus at the end of Centerra Court, covering the playground, baseball fields, and football field. It rose into the buildings, covering tile, bookshelves, and the wood floor of the gymnasium. It saturated low-lying books and student records. By the time the dirty water receded, it had touched every building on campus. The high school and middle school building received 18 inches of water, and the elementary school took on several feet.

Central Private School brought their students back to campus in March after t-buildings were installed.

Central Private School brought their students back to campus in March after t-buildings were installed.

On September 6, the school began its year a second time with its students in three separate locations. First Baptist Church of Central offered space for K3 through 1st grade, while the upper elementary students (2nd – 5th) returned to the main campus where numerous volunteers over several work days had prepared a small portion of the campus for normal operations. Zoar Baptist Church in Central donated the use of its facilities for 6th through 12th grades. Central Community Schools with First Student worked to bus the students to their appropriate temporary locations.
Central Schools, Galilee Baptist, and the Louisiana School for the Deaf allowed Central Private to use their gymnasiums for the basketball season.
While the students made the best of their situation and pressed on with their studies, the administration began making decisions about the future of the campus.
Ultimately, the playground equipment at the school was removed to make room for temporary buildings, and in March, the students experienced a third milestone–moving back to their campus. Superintendent/Principal Wayne Cook said they are in the process of making decisions on whether to remodel or completely rebuild the original school structures,.
Central Private has always worked closely with the Central Community School System, and recently children and parents from the Central Schools participated in Lemonade Day, selling jambalaya and lemonade. Altogether $10,000 in donations was donated to Central Private School from the event, which will help the institution continue to rebuild.
 Superintendent/Principal Wayne Cook has an open door policy with his staff and students.

Superintendent/Principal Wayne Cook has an open door policy with his staff and students.

With current enrollment at 440 students, the school’s mission is “to prepare students for the future in a safe, nurturing Christian environment in which students are encouraged to grow, share, and learn with a faculty dedicated to academic excellence… [The school] offers an accelerated college preparatory curriculum where students are encouraged to pursue individual interests, excel beyond basic academic standards, and achieve success as productive members of the community.”
Central Private prides itself on low student/teacher ratio, high standardized test scores, and academic core subjects include honors classes, advanced placement classes, and/or dual enrollment classes.
Central Private offers numerous opportunities for students to get involved with their peers outside the classroom. Student organizations with open membership include 4H, Art Club (Art I prerequisite), Chess Club (new in 2017), Fellowship of Christian Athletes and Students, Science Club, and Teen Library Club (TLC). Beta Club, Junior Beta Club, and National Honors Society are open to students by invitation.
Baseball, basketball, fishing, football, golf, soccer, softball, tennis, track, and spirit groups are offered at the school. This year the fishing team competed in the Louisiana High School Bass Fishing State Championship Tournament, finishing 13th out of 93 total teams. The track and field team also had 20 athletes qualify for the South State Track & Field Meet.


Central Private School, 12801 Centerra Court, Central, LA 70714; 225-261-3341; www.centralprivate.org;

Central Private is a member of the Louisiana Association of Independent Schools (LAIS) as well as the Mississippi Association Central Private of Independent Schools (MAIS).
The organization, accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools, is academically classified as “Accredited Approved” by the Louisiana Department of Education, which states that all private schools must be registered or approved by the Board of Elementary and Secondary Education (BESE). To be approved by the Board of Elementary and Secondary Education, schools must offer an education comparable to the quality of public schools.
Graduates from confirmed eligible private schools are eligible for TOPS, a state-funded college scholarship program.
By Holly Felter Rabalais