Education Desk

Education news is a priority for WWNO's expanding local news reporting — providing trusted news for parents, educators and community leaders. 

Support for education reporting on WWNO comes from Entergy Corporation.

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This spring, families who applied to New Orleans public schools got some bad news. School placements were announced a week late. Why was that such a big deal? Many private school deposits were due. Families had to decide: pay up to reserve a seat or take a chance with the public charter school lottery, OneApp. More New Orleans families - those with enough resources - find themselves choosing between public and private education.

Jeneane Watson always assumed she’d send her kids to public school. That was the norm where she grew up, outside Baltimore.

Governor John Bel Edwards released a new budget proposal on Wednesday, and it includes major cuts to Louisiana's college scholarship program.

The proposed budget - which would go into effect July 1 - slashes TOPS scholarship funding by over 60 percent. It provides only about a third of the nearly $300 million needed to fund the program.

Mallory Falk / WWNO

Hundreds of New Orleans students got a hands-on civics lesson this week. They rallied at the state capitol to support a bill that would keep 17-year-olds out of adult court and prison.

It’s a time-honored tradition. Civics teachers cart out a TV or flick on a projector and play the Schoolhouse Rock! video “I’m Just a Bill.” It follows a cartoon bill - a so-called “sad little scrap of paper” - on its journey to becoming a law.

The college admissions process can be confounding and nerve-wracking. What if an admissions counselor could take you behind the scenes, reviewing mock applications right in front of you? Next Monday, twelve schools are doing just that at the New Orleans College Case Study.

The Orleans Parish School Board considered a controversial new funding formula last night.

The school board meeting was unusually packed with students, parents, teachers and charter CEOs. Many wore lime green T-shirts that said: families and schools for fair funding. To them "fair" means new system that gives schools more money for students with disabilities, English Language Learners, and students who are overage or several years behind. But it gives less for gifted and talented students.

Thousands of students recently gathered outside the state capitol to protest higher education budget cuts.
Mallory Falk / WWNO

Governor John Bel Edwards has warned that Louisiana's budget crisis likely means even more cuts to higher education — up to $70 million — and big changes to the state's popular scholarship program, TOPS. For local students, that translates to an uncertain future.

Students on the steps of the Louisiana state capitol.
Mallory Falk / WWNO

College students from across Louisiana gathered at the state capitol on Wednesday to protest budget cuts, as the legislature met to discuss the state's budget shortfall.

Classes at public universities have been canceled or over-enrolled. Favorite professors have been laid off. And now, predictions of severe cuts to the state's scholarship program, TOPS.

Keiyanu Mattocks is supposed to start classes at LSU Alexandria this summer.

Relay Graduate School of Education

Many of New Orleans charter schools are focused on preparation for college, especially for low-income students of color who would be the first in their families to go to college. But what about preparing these students for that big academic and cultural transition?

Students at ReNEW Cultural Arts Academy return to class after a morning "value summit."
Mallory Falk / WWNO

Across the country next week, schools, families and advocacy groups will host events to celebrate National School Choice Week. Most Southern states allow for some form of choice — magnet schools, vouchers for private schools, charter schools and more. How do these options affect learning, school demographics and student success?

Sean Locke Photography / Shutterstock

It's only January, but one New Orleans high school has already held a graduation ceremony. The NET Charter High School is a small alternative school with just 150 students. Many dropped out of or were expelled from their previous schools.

Last weekend 19 of them received diplomas at the school's largest ever graduation ceremony.

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