On November 30, Louisiana governor Kathleen Blanco signed legislation that transferred control of 102 New Orleans schools to state management. For now, most of the Big Easy's public schools remain closed. But when they re-open in the fall, many will do so as charter schools. The Wall Street Journal's editors report that "Some 20 charters have been approved so far, but more will be needed." Indeed. Both the Broad and Gates foundations, the KIPP Academy program, and Tulane University have all expressed interest in supporting some of New Orleans' schools. Gadfly hopes the city will seize this opportunity to do chartering properly. If the governor, state lawmakers, philanthropists, and parents continue forward and carry through, Bourbon Street may soon not be the only sector of the city filled with joyous noise. So, too, will the city's long-failing schools.
"Orleans school takeover is official," Times-Picayune, December 1, 2005
"A Louisiana Education," Wall Street Journal, December 2, 2005 (subscription required)