Gov. Edwards signs bill into law establishing Special School District as an independent state agency

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Gov. John Bel Edwards

BATON ROUGE, La. (BRPROUD) – The Special School Districts (SSD) is to be established as an independent state agency, with oversight by a board of directors, due to Gov. John Bel Edwards signing Act 468 (HB 253) into law.

On Thursday, July 1, the law will be effective.

The SSD includes Special School Programs (SSP) in Louisiana and the Louisiana Schools for the Deaf and Visually Impaired (LSDVI).

Senator Sharon Hewitt, who presented the bill in the Louisiana Senate said, “The Special School District and the Louisiana Schools for the Deaf and Visually Impaired have a rich history with nearly 170 years of serving students. The passage of Act 468 (HB 253) is another history-making event that will allow the administration to be laser-focused on students and their academic outcomes. This legislation places the spotlight on student success, where it belongs.” 

According to a news release from the SSD, independence will allow the administration to operate schools and programs more efficiently and provide guaranteed financial support from the state’s Minimum Foundation Program (MFP) formula.

The board of directors, 11 members appointed by the governor, and one member, appointed by the president of the Board of Elementary and Secondary Education are to assume their responsibilities in August 2021, according to the SSD.

“I want to thank Representative Scott McKnight for authoring Act 468. I am excited about the SSD being a stand-alone agency and look forward to working with the new board members to better serve our scholars’ academic needs. Partnering with this board will benefit our scholars and I envision great things ahead as we continue providing them an Education Without Limits.” said SSD Superintendent Ernest E. Garrett, III.

For more information about the Special School District, visit

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