Bossier Parish is getting ready for another school year and Superintendent D.C. Machen says there are a lot of major projects coming. One of them is the wing expansion at W.T. Lewis Elementary, which just broke ground yesterday. But that's not all.

"Right across the street from W.T. Lewis, we will be building our new Bossier Parish School for Technology and Innovative Learning. And then, of course, out on the Kingston corridor, we will be building our new Kingston Elementary School," Machen says. "And in Haughton, within the Tuscany Subdivision, we will be building our new Haughton Middle School, then begin our renovation on Airline High School. So, it's going to be an exciting year, a very busy year."

Machen says this work is part of a 10-year, $210-million construction bond project approved by voters last year, and broken up into two 5-year phases.

As for changes students and parents can expect for the upcoming school year, Machen says there are very few. "We have adopted a new reading and math series for our K through 5 schools that will be incorporated in this school year, but that really does not impact the students and parents," he says.

But teachers will have a lot of new issues related to continued implementation of Common Core Standards and the new evaluation process. "But we pledge to our parents and students that we will strive to provide enhanced educational opportunities in those classrooms, with more rigor and more relevance with the curriculum there, to be sure we are meeting those standard," says Machen.

Some are thinking that school is starting quite a bit early this year, but Machen tells us Bossier Parish has started back during the first week in August for several years now. Teachers will be back in the classrooms August 5th, and the kids' first day is the 8th.

One thing that many parents are still curious about is the palm-scanning system in school cafeterias. Machen says all Bossier Parish schools have that technology now, and he says it's made lunch lines much more efficient. But he tells KEEL News parents do still have the capability to opt out of the program. Just visit the Bossier Parish schools website to find out more.