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NEW ORLEANS – (MAY 27, 2020) - The NOLA Public Schools (NOLA-PS) Public Education Survey on how COVID-19 has affected public education is now live. The goal of the survey is to gather feedback on the current experience of participants and discover what is most important to them at this time as they think ahead to the start of the new school year. The district invites parents, students, teachers, school staff and the community to share their insights, experiences and priorities on schooling during the pandemic and how to best return to school in the fall. The combined responses will help the district and the newly formed Reopening Task Force understand what is happening in our community right now.

“Now more than ever we need to hear from our community,” said Superintendent of Schools Dr. Henderson Lewis, Jr. “The virus has presented us all with unique and trying challenges. As we plan for what lies ahead for the next school year, we want to be sure we are involving everyone in developing plans to best keep our children and education professionals healthy and supported, while also taking into consideration the needs of families and the community at large. It’s going to take all of us to do this and I know we can do this. I am eager to hear more from the Task Force and encourage everyone to participate in the survey and have their voice be heard.”

How to Participate in The Public Education Survey

To have your voice heard be heard in the public survey please visit www.nolapublicschools.com

The survey is completely anonymous and open to all parents, teachers, school staff and admin, students in grades 6 and above, and community members. The survey takes approximately 5-7 minutes to complete. Participants are not asked which school they attend or work. They are rather simply asked to provide their zip codes. The survey is open now and will close at 5 p.m. on June 5th.

Public Education Survey To Inform Reopening Task Force

In planning for the reopening of schools for the 2020-2021 school year, the district has convened and will lead a 30-member NOLA-PS Reopening Task Force to assist in their development of a Roadmap to Reopening, which is tentatively scheduled for release by the end of June.

The Task Force, which held its first meeting virtually last week and will meet weekly throughout the summer, is focusing on planning for every possible scenario to ensure students, staff and faculty are safe while helping children grow and learn. The group will act as a conduit for various stakeholders including the City, the Louisiana Department of Health, the Louisiana Department of Education, the Office of Youth and Families as well as the district’s students, parents, retired educators and faith-based community advisory committees. It will advise district administration and the board on the resources and supports that should be available to students, families and educators next school year. In addition to safety and educational considerations, the group will address the needs of diverse learners and the mental and behavioral health of students and staff in various reopening scenarios. The group is comprised of school leaders, teachers, social workers, medical experts, parents, city officials and other key experts.

The launch of this survey and the formation of the Task Force are the first step of re-entry planning for the district’s response to the COVID-19 pandemic. The response has been organized into four phases - Rapid Response, Assessment, Re-entry Planning and Implementation.

Over the last several weeks the District has been in the Assessment phase of the COVID-19 recovery; working with school leaders to determine what has worked and what will be needed to continue to support teachers and students in the next school year. As the District works through realigning plans and changing budgets for the next school year, it has been sharing various potential scenarios for reopening with school leaders and working with them to develop plans for each step. To better unify the protocols for reopening schools, and to make protocols and guidelines streamlined across the district, the administration has been sharing multiple potential needs to inform schools’ planning.

Some of those shared considerations include:

  • Preparing for a potential virtual first day of school
  • Considering staggering school schedules to allow for fewer students on campus at one time
  • Reducing class sizes
  • Increasing hygiene practices for staff and students and increasing sanitation schedules for campuses
  • Social distancing on school buses
  • Conducting lunch service in classrooms
  • Controlled entry and exit points on campus and limiting visitors to campus
  • Regular wellness checks for students and staff
  • Masks for students and staff

Additionally, NOLA-PS is in the process of hiring a medical and public health advisor who will oversee reentry planning processes and will be available to all schools in the district to advise on actions to take and how to keep our campuses safe.

Citywide Feeding Program to Continue Providing Meals to Students Through the Summer with Revised Schedule

NEW ORLEANS – (May 20, 2020) – NOLA Public Schools’ (NOLA-PS) Citywide Feeding Program has officially served more than one million meals to students since the program started on March 16.  NOLA-PS and Charter Management Organizations launched the full-scale Citywide Feeding Program in collaboration with many charter school leaders, the New Orleans Recreation Development Commission (NORD), local non-profit organizations, faith-based partners and private businesses. The program is comprised of 39 Community Feeding Distribution sites across New Orleans that ensure families can easily access breakfast and lunch during this prolonged school closure. The 39 sites consist of schools, NORD facilities and local business locations and the Citywide Feeding Program will continue throughout the summer.

“As New Orleans prepared for the spread of COVID-19, we as educators quickly realized the need to provide child nutrition services and worked diligently to build and launch the Citywide Feeding Program,” said NOLA-PS Superintendent Dr. Henderson Lewis, Jr. “I’d like to thank our school leaders, partners and the food distribution site workers for making the Citywide Feeding Program a success. This service is vital for students to receive a proper education.” 

As a district, NOLA-PS and school operators recognize the need to provide daily meals to students via the Citywide Feeding Program and all parties remain dedicated to serving those most in need during this trying time. This work will continue through the summer to ensure students’ health and wellbeing stay on track. Additionally, NOLA-PS is working to create a revised meal distribution schedule for the summer.  

“As a district, we are committed to servicing the whole child through this entire crisis,” said Orleans Parish School Board President Ethan Ashley. “Our top priority is the health and wellbeing of our students. We are thrilled to be able to serve our students and families as we continue our meal distribution program through the summer. This is not only monumental for the families that we serve but we must also recognize the hard work and dedication of our food service providers.”

NOLA-PS worked closely with Charter School Leaders, the City of New Orleans and NORD to execute the Citywide Feeding Program. Additionally, LYFT donated $5,000 in free rides for families to travel to and from food distribution sites in Orleans Parish. These partnerships made it possible for families across the District to access the food distribution sites. NOLA-PS is leading the way, locally and nationally, by providing students with the meals, health services and remote learning they need to grow and succeed during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Citywide Feeding Program Schedule:

  • Every Monday, meals will be provided for two days.
  • Every Wednesday, meals will be provided for three days.
  • Community Feeding sites will NOT be open on Tuesday, Thursday or Friday.
  • Service Hours: 9 a.m. – 12 p.m.
  • Families wishing to access information on child nutrition resources should visit the District’s webpage at https://nolapublicschools.com/covid19/nutrition. This webpage has the most up-to-date listing of where food services are available.
  • For a list of food distribution site locations, click here.

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ABOUT NOLA PUBLIC SCHOOLS: NOLA Public Schools is the public school district for Orleans Parish, which includes the district’s elected school board, known as the Orleans Parish School Board and the district’s administration led by NOLA Public Schools Superintendent Dr. Henderson Lewis, Jr. NOLA Public Schools currently oversees 78 public schools. For more information, visit www.nolapublicschools.com. For updates, follow NOLA Public Schools on Facebook @NOLAPublicSchools, Instagram @nolaps and Twitter @NOLAPSchools.    



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NEW ORLEANS – (May 14, 2020)  - This evening, at the May Board Business Meeting, the Orleans Parish School Board (OPSB) voted to extend the contract of Superintendent of Schools Dr. Henderson Lewis, Jr. The vote, which passed 5-2, will extend the contract by an additional twelve months, extended from ending June 30, 2021 to ending June 30, 2022.

“Dr. Henderson Lewis has been an exemplary leader of our public schools these past five years and is the leader we need to move us into the future. Whether he was ushering in the successful return of schools to local control from the RSD, overseeing new initiatives to raise graduation rates, setting high standards for school accountability, or becoming the first local government agency to increase the minimum wage to $15 an hour, Dr. Lewis has risen to the challenge. Even before this global pandemic, he had earned his contract extension. But now, as COVID-19 has ravaged our city, he has demonstrated strong leadership once again, mobilizing technology, food and resources for families and students,” said OPSB Board President Ethan Ashley. “I believe that our job in this moment, on the front end of this crisis, is to offer our students, parents and educators as much stability as possible so that we all can focus our energies on the work toward recovery. Our school community should not have to worry about leadership changes in a time such as this, and certainly not when we have a Superintendent who has performed well through many difficult challenges. We are in good hands with Dr. Lewis and I’m proud to support his continued tenure.”

“Leading the New Orleans public school system is the most gratifying job I’ve ever had and I’m excited to build on the progress we have been making,” said NOLA-PS Superintendent Dr. Henderson Lewis, Jr. “Our students are on a great path, but we still have a lot of work to do to ensure every child can graduate, ready for success in college or to attain his or her first job. And now, due to the global pandemic that has presented our schools with new challenges, our charge is more urgent than ever. I’m proud of how educators and this entire city have stepped up on behalf of our children and look forward to continuing to work with school leaders and board members to overcome and persevere.”
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The Annenberg Learner programming will reach 45,000 local students through NOLA-PS TV

NEW ORLEANS – (May 18, 2020) – NOLA Public Schools (NOLA-PS) and the Annenberg Foundation have partnered to broadcast Annenberg Learner programming on NOLA-PS TV free of charge to help support continued distance learning needs over the summer impacting more than 45,000 local students in light of the COVID-19 public health crisis. The Annenberg Learner content collection contains K-12 educational materials and videos covering a variety of subjects from math and science to literature and music.

Starting today, May 18, the Annenberg Learner programming can be accessed at: https://nolapublicschools.com/opsb-tv or NOLA-PS TV on channel 8 via COX Cable now through July 31, 2020.

“I’d like to thank Annenberg Foundation for giving our families and teachers the opportunity to experience this educational programming, free of charge to fulfill distance learning needs,” said NOLA-PS Superintendent of Schools Dr. Henderson Lewis, Jr. “The Annenberg Learner content is a great way for our students to continue their educational growth, especially during the upcoming summer break. We truly value this partnership and look forward to the entire NOLA-PS community utilizing this content.”

Families and teachers will benefit from some of Learner’s most popular series including The Habitable Planet: A Systems Approach to Environmental Science which explores the natural functions of Earth’s systems and Earth’s ability to sustain life, and Against All Odds: Inside Statistics which shows the relevance of statistics in real-world settings. In the American Cinema series, over 150 Hollywood insiders document American culture through film. Additionally, The Constitution: That Delicate Balance series is a timely resource that probes beliefs and biases about the Constitution.

“Broadcasting Learner programming via television ensures that all students, whether or not they have access to a computer or an Internet connection, can continue their education remotely as we redefine what learning looks like during this crisis,” said Cinny Kennard, Executive Director, Annenberg Foundation. “Annenberg Learner has always known it is critical for teachers to have access to educational materials that supplement their curricula to create deeper learning connections with their students, educators in the midst of a global pandemic are certainly no exception.”

Annenberg Learner – Week 1 – Daily Schedule – May 18-23



To access the Annenberg Learner weekly programming schedule now through July 31, 2020 on NOLA-PS TV visit www.nolapublicschools.com.

The Annenberg Foundation is making Annenberg Learner programming available free of charge to any school district in the country to assist with distance learning. Annenberg Learner also has free content resources and coordinated online materials, such as user guides, downloadable textbooks, labs and interactives, that can be used directly at www.learner.org.

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ABOUT NOLA PUBLIC SCHOOLS: NOLA Public Schools is the public school district for Orleans Parish, which includes the district’s elected school board, known as the Orleans Parish School Board and the district’s administration led by NOLA Public Schools Superintendent Dr. Henderson Lewis Jr. NOLA Public Schools currently oversees 78 public schools. For more information visit www.nolapublicschools.com. For updates, follow NOLA Public Schools on Facebook @NolaPublicSchools, Instagram @nolaps and Twitter @NOLAPSchools.

ABOUT ANNENBERG LEARNER:
Annenberg Learner is the education division of the Annenberg Foundation, created to advance excellent teaching in American schools. For more than three decades, Annenberg Learner has pursued this mission by funding and distributing multimedia resources, including video, print, and web materials, for the professional development of teachers (K-12 and college levels). These resources in all discipline areas help teachers to stay up-to-date in their fields and to use current learning research in their classrooms. More than 100 multimedia courses and workshops are streamed free through http://www.learner.org. As the name Annenberg Learner implies, its focus is on the teacher, as well as the student, as a learner.


NEW ORLEANS – (May 14, 2020) – This evening New Orleans Public Schools (NOLA-PS) Superintendent of Schools Dr. Henderson Lewis, Jr. presented his recommendations on the Spring Charter Applications to the Orleans Parish School Board (OPSB). In total, two organizations received a recommendation to either approve or deny their application to begin a new school (Type 1 – New Start) or transform an existing charter school (Type 1 – Transformation). They are as follows:




“Expanding our school programs that are doing well is how we continue to ensure the number of seats in quality schools continues to grow throughout the district. Making these decisions with regards to charter applications is a responsibility I take seriously,” said Superintendent of Schools Dr. Henderson Lewis, Jr. “We are committed to seeing our top performing schools expand and to embrace exciting new school programs in our district.”

Completed application materials and independent evaluator review documents are available online at https://nolapublicschools.com/schools/open-a-school.

“We require a high level of excellence from our operators and are excited to see some of these applications move forward,” said Orleans Parish School Board President Ethan Ashley. “To that end, I want to thank everyone involved, from the applicant teams to our independent evaluators along with the NOLA-PS administration, for their tireless work to ensure our schools remain competitive in providing the best quality education to our students.”

Spring 2020 Charter RFA Process

In January, the OPSB issued a Request for Applications (RFA) for the spring 2020 cycle. Applications undergo a rigorous evaluation that includes three committees: independent third party evaluation, internal committee of NOLA-PS staff, and a community committee comprised of the Superintendent’s Parent, Teacher and Faith-Based Advisory Councils. All applicants had the opportunity to present their proposed school(s) to the OPSB Board Members and community during the public hearing that was held on, April 23, ahead of the May 2020 Orleans Parish School Board Business Meeting.

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ABOUT NOLA PUBLIC SCHOOLS: NOLA Public Schools is the public school district for Orleans Parish, which includes the district’s elected school board, known as the Orleans Parish School Board and the district’s administration led by NOLA Public Schools Superintendent Dr. Henderson Lewis Jr. NOLA Public Schools currently oversees 78 public schools. For more information, visitwww.nolapublicschools.com. For updates, follow NOLA Public Schools on Facebook @NOLAPublicSchools, Instagram @nolaps and Twitter @NOLAPSchools.
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External Resources

NOLA Public Schools. Every Child. Every School. Every Day.

2401 Westbend Parkway
New Orleans, Louisiana 70114

Phone: 504-304-3520

Hotline Number for Parents
504-527-KIDS

School-based issues or concerns during normal business hours

24-hour Hotline Number for Community
504-522-HELP
District based community concerns, feedback, & inquiries after-hours support