Shawn’s Voice: Will Her Freshman Disappointments turn into Her Sophomore Hopes?

  “So, how did you do in school Tete; did you pass?” “I don’t know.” “Well, what did you have on your final report card?” “A’s and B’s.” “I’m sure you passed with those grades Tete, are you ready for the 4th grade?” “Yes.” “What about you two Gabriel and Taylor?” “Yes we passed, and we’re ready for summer!” “And you Shawn?” “I passed, and I did ok in school. I had… Read More

Sylvanie Williams College Prep in Trouble

  Sylvanie Williams College Prep may lose its contract based on a strong possibility that it will receive an F on the state report card.  In order for the contract to be renewed, the school would have needed to earn a C grade. “Any closure or takeover would not happen until next summer. The Board of Elementary and Secondary Education usually votes on charter renewal in December.”  Read more here

Graduation Rates Going Higher

Louisiana schools have a mandated graduation rate mark of 80%.  Despite missing the ultimate mark, graduation rates are rising due to specific plans to continue increasing the graduation rate. “[What] we are trying to do is increase the graduation rate and increase the standards. That makes a difference.” Read more here

Three Years Later, No Significant Performance Improvements? What Can We Learn from the State’s Voucher Program

  If you’re like most parents, you simply want the best for your child(ren).  And whatever it takes to attain it, you are likely willing to do.  For a parent whose child(ren) attends a public school in New Orleans, making the decision (or allowing the city’s centralized enrollment process One-App to make it for you) on which school your child attends can be as nerve-wrecking as it is empowering; but either way,… Read More

A stronger voice of the People by getting back to the basics

  Each and every day we can scroll timelines, visit social media sites or peruse the internet and find a myriad of stories about charter schools. You don’t have to look far to find the good, the bad or the ugly. My recent experiences have taught me parents really don’t have the time, resources or information to make an informed decision on whether their child should attend a charter or traditional school;… Read More

Should NOLA Parents be More Supportive of the White Teachers that Teach their Children?

  Let me begin by stating that I am a strong proponent for having more teachers that are representative and reflective of the population that it serves. I believe race match is a significant and valuable contributor to student performance and success. Translation: black teachers + black kids = potentially more support and opportunities.   But in the city of New Orleans, this is not our reality.  Until school talent search teams… Read More

Shantell Lee: In the spirit of celebration

  Working in education in this city, I’ve begun to realize that Shantell Lee and the countless other New Orleanians who have succeeded are really something to be celebrated. Not because they are some sort of an anomaly, but because they are not an anomaly. Despite so many structural barriers that work against her and others like her, Shantell has risen to success—and not just success defined by the normal social markers… Read More

Independence Day: More Than a Barbecue?

  There’s so much I didn’t know growing up.  There were things my mom didn’t know and therefore couldn’t teach me.  Things my teachers may have known, but couldn’t tell me because they’d potentially lose their jobs.  For some reason, I thought growing up black and poor meant I had been through something that would, in turn, make me GREAT – make me successful.  I wanted to be the opposite of my… Read More

What, to a Slave Descendant, is your 4th of July?

by Shawnta S. Barnes Without fail, when certain U.S. federal holidays come around each year, the debate begins about whether or not the holiday should be celebrated especially by minorities.  Franchesca Ramsey, host of MTV Decoded, details in two videos, “Everything You Know about Thanksgiving is Wrong” and “Columbus was a Genocidal Rapist” some of the reasons we should think about what we are truly celebrating.  This debate isn’t new.  On July 5,… Read More