More than half of New Orleans public schools require registration forms that could discourage undocumented students from enrolling. That's according to a new report by the Southern Poverty Law Center and VAYLA New Orleans.

Last spring, after more than 100 years and a lot of controversy, John McDonogh High School closed its doors. The building is undergoing a $34 million renovation, but it's still not clear what kind of school will move into the building. Community members weighed in on the building's future at two public meetings last week.

The meetings were led by representatives from the Orleans Parish School Board, Recovery School District, and John McDonogh Steering Committee. The goal: get community input on the future of the school. And the community sent a clear message.

Mallory Falk / WWNO

As New Orleans continues to reshape public education, WWNO seeks to highlight teachers who bring unique talents and perspectives to their work. We feature one such educator each month.

Pablo Garcia teaches standard first grade concepts: addition, subtraction, the water cycle. But he does everything in Spanish. Garcia is an immersion instructor at the International School of Louisiana.

Support for Voices of Educators and education news on WWNO comes from Entergy Corporation.

Mallory Falk / WWNO

This week is the National Week of Action Against School Pushout. Students, teachers and education advocates around the country are holding events to raise awareness about policies they say push kids out of school and into the juvenile justice system. In New Orleans, local groups held a discussion about pushout.

The discussion had a specific focus: the parallel between what's happening in New Orleans schools and what happened this summer in Ferguson, Missouri. 

Alberto G. / Flickr

A few years ago, a new phrase became all the rage in education reform: Data driven. Students take benchmark and standardized tests throughout the year, and the tests generate lots of data. But how do teachers turn those data points into lesson plans?

A new report from Tulane University says New Orleans is improving education at public high schools.

The university’s Cowen Institute says the co-called “vulnerable students” are exceeding expectations.

The study released Wednesday defines those students as:

-- being more than two years above grade-level age in ninth grade

-- having failed an eighth-grade assessment test

-- qualifying for free or reduced-price lunches

-- and being eligible for special education services.

The Sewerage and Water Board of New Orleans is getting a little greener. On Thursday night the Board unveiled seven green infrastructure projects it’s partnering on that aim to improve community outreach and participation in the city’s water management.

Eve Abrams / WWNO

It used to be that most kids went to places called schools to get their education, and in those schools, kids were called students. But in recent years, the vocabulary around schooling — especially in urban areas, and especially when it comes to charter schools — is changing. In New Orleans, where all schools receiving public funding are now charters, we investigate what’s behind this new school language.

I started off with a little experiment. I asked a bunch of adults: where did you go to school?

“I went to Newton Elementary School, Newton High School.”

The jump in public school retirements is easing a bit. But the numbers are still higher than before the passage of Governor Bobby Jindal's education plan.

Almost 3,000 kindergarten through 12th-grade employees in the Teachers' Retirement System of Louisiana retired in the fiscal year ending June 30.

Seventy percent had 20 years or more of service credit.

In the two prior fiscal years, the number reached more than 3,400.

State Superintendent of Education John White tells The Advocate that economics is the driving factor.

atgeo Flickr


The politically controversial curriculum standards known as the Common Core have been in the headlines for months, in Louisiana and across the country. But for most teachers and educators the standards have been quietly transforming classroom instruction for years. And for textbook publishers and other vendors, the new standards add up to new business.

When thousands of math teachers descended on New Orleans earlier this year, two words proved more seductive than chocolate. Or sex. Or even quadratic equations.

Common Core.