Floyd welcomes new faces

Tony Parra: PNT Staff Writer

FLOYD — Floyd School students headed into the hallways of their school on Wednesday greeted by new faces from the teaching staff and a new face at the top.

For new Floyd School Superintendent Paul Benoit it was his initiation into a Floyd school day. Benoit began his tenure as superintendent of Floyd Schools on July 5 and was selected for the position in March.

“It was a great day,” Benoit said. “I visited some classes and got a positive tone from students and teachers.”

Benoit is the third superintendent of Floyd Schools in the last three years. Wayne McCullar was superintendent last year before leaving for a job opportunity in the Florida Keys more beneficial to his family and Wally Feldman was the superintendent for the 2003-04 school year before taking the superintendent position at Zuni.

Benoit said Floyd High School Principal Chris Duncan spoke during an assembly in the morning about the importance of adequate yearly progress reports. Benoit said he was impressed with how much knowledge the students had of the AYP testing and its importance.

Bree Lancaster, an eighth-grader, said she saw some new teachers and new students during her classes.

“There’s a lot of new teachers,” Lancaster said. “We lost students from last year. Last year my class had 30 and this year there are 24. Some of those students are new.”

One of the new teachers for the Floyd School District is Paul’s wife, Lucia Benoit, who teaches English for middle and high school students. Paul Benoit said Lucia Benoit has 19 years of teaching experience.

Lancaster said one of the things she hopes to do this year is play volleyball, basketball, run track and be a Future Farmer of America judge in poultry. Fellow eighth-grader Jesus Davalos has similar aspirations.

Davalos wants to be an FFA judge and wants to follow in the footsteps of his older brothers, Luis and Fide Davalos, who were stars on the six-man football team.

Jesus Davalos enjoyed his first day of school.
“It’s pretty exciting, but still new and educational,” Jesus Davalos said. “It’s fun to see your friends and the new teachers.”

Jesus said he worked out with his brother Fide, who plays football for Eastern New Mexico University, during the summer.

Some of the new faces to the district are the Benoits’
children. Paul and Lucia have three children who will be attending Floyd High School, a freshman, sophomore and senior. Their three children are part of the approximate 235 students from grades K-12 who went to school on Wednesday, Paul Benoit said.

The Benoits live near the school and he said they enjoy the small-school setting. According to Paul Benoit, his family enjoys the fact that Floyd is not as remote as Animas. Paul Benoit said now they can drive less than 20 miles to get to a Wal-mart as opposed to more than 100 miles to Deming and stores similar to the ones in Clovis and Portales