Education Desk

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

Support for education reporting on New Orleans Public Radio comes from Entergy Corporation.

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Jess Clark / WWNO

On Friday, Governor John Bel Edwards signed a proclamation closing all public schools in the state for one month to help slow the spread of coronavirus in the state. Schools are scheduled to resume instruction April 13, unless state officials decide otherwise.

Members of Nuestra Voz posed for a photo with school board members and OPSB superindent Henderson Lewis after the board passed policies meant to buffer students from immigration and law enforcement.
Jess Clark / WWNO

Editor's Note: Encore Academy declined our interview request during the reporting of this story. However, the story has been updated to include information the school provided after publication.

Public schools are required to serve students from all kinds of families, regardless of race, income, or what language they speak. But schools in Orleans Parish haven’t always done a good job of serving students from immigrant families, especially families still learning English.

After parents complained in 2013, the federal government started monitoring the situation, but parents say they’re still dealing with widespread issues. Now, they're taking matters into their own hands.

Students from Mary D. Coghill were among those who called on the board to overturn Lewis' decision to oust Coghill's and Craig's management.
Jess Clark / WWNO - New Orleans Public Radio

NOLA Public Schools Superintendent Henderson Lewis’ decision to overhaul management at two charter schools became final Thursday night. After hours of passionate public comment in support of the schools, the Orleans Parish School Board voted not to reject Lewis’ decision. The votes mean Mary D. Coghill Charter School and Joseph A. Craig Charter School will be turned over to new leadership next school year.

The bus driver's permit had been denied due to a drug conviction.
Wikimedia Commons

Nine children were injured Wednesday morning when a school bus carrying students for James M. Singleton Charter School overturned on the I-10 high rise. The driver was apparently driving without a permit. 

Black Students Say Tulane Needs A Culture Change

Dec 9, 2019
Members of Les Griots Violets (from left to right) Raven Ancar, Deja Wells, Lexi Frame, Kamiya Stewart, Paige Magee, Abi Mbaye and Tabita Gnagniko.
Travis Lux / WWNO - New Orleans Public Radio

Like many colleges and universities nationwide, Tulane University has a troubled past when it comes to race. The school’s namesake, Paul Tulane, was a wealthy New Orleans merchant whose fortune likely had ties to slavery. When he endowed the school in 1881, it was explicitly for the education of “young white persons." After a court battle, Tulane admitted its first black students in 1963. Now, more than 50 years later, some say the university still has a long way to go to make its campus truly welcoming to black students.

A group of black women students is organizing for both cultural and policy changes to make that happen.

George Washington Carver High School students Kennis Fairley (left), Marneisha Gilmore and Jacorey Warner.
Cheryl Gerber / WWNO - New Orleans Public Radio

Over the last four weeks, WWNO has brought listeners our series "This Is Why It Matters" - stories about people our community has lost to gun violence.

The Holocaust memorial in Berlin.
CC0 Public Domain

There are a lot of subjects that are tough to teach, but one of the most difficult is the Holocaust. It’s an important historical event, but one that can be scary for students to hear about, and hard to understand. With a recent rise in hate crimes, activists say now especially, the history of the Holocaust and antisemitism is important for students to learn.

Echoes and Reflections creates middle and high school curriculum on the Holocaust. WWNO's education reporter Jess Clark attended their recent training at the National World War II Museum. Here are five ways to improve instruction.

The Nation's report card shows more Louisiana students are performing at proficient, but that the state still trails the rest of the country.
midnightpeace_90 / Flickr

Louisiana public schools maintained their overall 'B' rating, based on the state department of education's system for measuring school quality. The grade comes from a "school performance score" - a state calculation based on standardized test results and graduation rates. The score ticked up slightly from 76.1 in 2018 to 77.1. in 2019.

‘He Was Like A Real Brother To Me’: Remembering Deshaun Singleton

Nov 6, 2019
Jacorey Warner [left] is interviewed by his friend and classmate Marneisha Gilmore about his friend Deshaun Singleton.
Cheryl Gerber / WWNO - New Orleans Public Radio

Our student-produced series “This Is Why It Matters” is about the people our community has lost to gun violence.

Orleans Parish officials say this is the fourth year of stagnant or declining test scores.
DCJOHN / Flickr (CC BY 2.0)

Louisiana's class of 2019 had an average composite ACT score of 18.9 - the lowest average score since the state started requiring all students to take the exam in 2013.