New Orleans charter schools

John F. Kennedy High School students attend graduation in 2012.
John F. Kennedy High School / New Beginning Schools Foundation

The board of New Orleans charter school group New Beginnings Schools Foundation has voted to surrender both of their remaining charters after a grade-fixing scandal at New Beginning’s John F. Kennedy High School. 

Junior Tye Mansion goes up to bat for the McDonogh 35 Roneagles.
Jess Clark / WWNO - New Orleans Public Radio

The first black high school in New Orleans, McDonogh 35, was a source of pride, until the chartering of the city’s schools after Hurricane Katrina contributed to its academic collapse.

Now, the school board hopes turning it over to a charter organization can save it.

Supporters of the leadership at Bethune and Baby Ben cheer for a student who urged the OPSB to grant Bethune's current leadership a charter.
Jess Clark / WWNO

Superintendent Henderson Lewis says Mary McLeod Bethune Elementary and Benjamin Franklin Elementary are ready to become charter schools. Lewis' approval of the schools' plans mean next year, there will likely remain just one traditional public school in the district.

Einstein Charter Schools says it doesn't believe they should have to provide transportation for students. Instead it directs parents to private van services.
Jess Clark / WWNO

The Orleans Parish School Board is taking Einstein Charter Schools to court over the school group's transportation policy. The board filed a petition in Orleans Parish Civil District Court Wednesday, asking the court to declare Einstein in breach of its charter contract and allow OPSB to force Einstein to bus students.

Supporters of the leadership at Bethune and Baby Ben cheer for a student who urged the OPSB to grant Bethune's current leadership a charter.
Jess Clark / WWNO

It's the general understanding that Mary McLeod Bethune Elementary and Benjamin Franklin Elementary and Middle will become charter schools. The only question is when that will happen, and who will run them. The schools' current principals think it should be them, so they applied to the Orleans Parish School Board to convert them into charters beginning next year. But an independent report recommended the board deny their applications.

Government reform advocate David Osborne's new book includes a look at New Orleans' post-Katrina school reform.
Courtesy of David Osborne

New Orleans’ post-Katrina experiment with public education has drawn the attention of pro-charter-school education reformers across the U.S. Today, 9 in 10 New Orleans public school students attend charter schools. One reformer who has had his eye on New Orleans is David Osborne. Osborne’s 1992 book ‘Reinventing Government’ had a major impact on government reform efforts during that decade. Now Osborne leads the Progressive Policy Institute and is advocating for education reform through charter schools. WWNO’s Jess Clark sat down with Osborne to talk about his new book ‘Reinventing America’s Schools,’ which includes a look at the New Orleans school system.

frwl / Wikimedia

Public schools in Orleans parish have been steadily improving in the years since Hurricane Katrina, but lost ground this year — according to school performance scores released by the state Tuesday.

Einstein Charter Schools says it doesn't believe they should have to provide transportation for students. Instead it directs parents to private van services.
Jess Clark / WWNO

Mrs. Jackson's mornings are a race against the clock. Since Einstein Charter Schools don't provide transportation, Jackson drives her child to Einstein Charter School at Village De L'Est herself.

The OPSB has sent Einstein Charter Schools a letter of noncompliance for not providing adequate transportation.
Wikimedia Commons

Einstein Charter Schools are in trouble for failing to provide adequate transportation to their students. WWNO has obtained a notice of noncompliance sent from the Orleans Parish School Board (OPSB) to Einstein Charter schools warning them they have to start transporting students to school.

Summer break is over. This month, kids across New Orleans are trading swimsuits and morning cartoons for fresh notebooks and unsharpened pencils. For nine schools that used to be in the state's Recovery School District, going back to the classroom also means going back to the Orleans Parish School Board (OPSB). By next year, all Recovery schools will be back under parish control.