The non-profit's leader, Chris Meyer, was previously an administrator in the state-run Recovery School District. When New Schools launched last April, the RSD appeared ready to hand over the keys to the 7 schools it runs directly in Baton Rouge as soon as Meyer and his team had the charter school operators and resources in place.
Nearly a year and a half later, New Schools has picked half a dozen of what it considers to be the best charter operators in the country -- including Yes Prep and KIPP, which, as The Lens has reported, arefamiliar names in New Orleans. Backers have committed roughly $15 million in seed money. This fall the Recovery School District is starting the process of matching up the operators with buildings where they can start charter schools in Baton Rouge.
Eleven-year-old Quincy Lindsey was one of hundreds of New Orleans students who returned to school in July this year. Longer school years and days are part of a growing national movement as school leaders add time in an effort to boost academic results.
It’s a July morning at 6:45 a.m. and the temperature is starting to climb across the city. Most schoolchildren would expect to have at least a few more weeks of summer. But Quincy Lindsey, a fifth grader at New Orleans’ ReNEW Cultural Arts Academy, is trying to wake up for his first day of school.
His mother, Calanthia Lindsey, tries to keep Quincy on pace to make it to school by 7:15 a.m., reminding him not to use his pencils as drum sticks and to tuck in his shirt.
LSU Shreveport’s LaPREP – a rigorous summer academic program – came to an end yesterday as 49 middle school students walked across the stage at LSUS's University Center Theater to acknowledge two summers of intensive work in math, science, engineering and technical writing covering material well beyond their years.
Louisiana lawmakers went out of their way to add a $46 million line item to the state budget to allow more students from under-performing public schools go to private school through the voucher program championed by Gov. Bobby Jindal.
Both Wisconsin and Ohio have just pushed through major expansions of their voucher programs too. And both states -- like Louisiana -- are headed by Republican governors.
Sarah Carr, a writer for the Hechinger Report, says these governors are being strategic in their support of vouchers.
"It’s a way for them to make a name for themselves pursuing an education agenda that’s typically been embraced by conservatives and trying even to some extent to one-up each other in creating a bigger and bolder voucher program."
Most of my academic life I’ve questioned how schools impact settlers’ integration into communities: How do people become members of society? How do recalcitrant gatekeepers become welcoming neighbors? These questions have moved me literally and figuratively around the world. Nine years ago, those questions carried me to New Orleans and helped transform me into a New Orleanian. Until recently, I haven’t spent much time considering what full-fledged community members go through when they voluntarily leave their homes. That is until I decided to take a job in another state.