by Superintendent Dr. Avis Williams

Equity. Excellence. Joy.

Class Notes is a monthly newsletter intended to keep community stakeholders connected to NOLA-PS. To subscribe click here.

May 2024 RECAP

Celebrating the Class of 2024: A Momentous Achievement!

Congratulations to the graduating class of 2024! It's been an absolute joy attending our district’s high school graduations, and we eagerly look forward to celebrating with the remaining scholars at their ceremonies.

Graduates, your hard work and dedication have paid off, marking a significant milestone in your lives. As you move forward, cherish the lessons learned and the friendships made. Embrace challenges as opportunities for growth, and always strive to be kind and compassionate.

A heartfelt thank you to all the families, educators, and staff for your unwavering support throughout our scholars’ journeys.

Best wishes to our incredible graduates!

Triumph Over Adversity: Celebrating Elijah Hogan's Inspirational Journey to Valedictorian

I am delighted to share an incredible story of resilience and triumph within our district. Elijah Hogan, a senior at Walter L. Cohen High School, recently achieved the remarkable feat of becoming his class valedictorian despite facing homelessness. With a GPA of 3.89, Elijah's journey serves as a powerful testament to the strength of the human spirit and the importance of unwavering determination.

Elijah's message to New Orleans youth is one of hope and perseverance, urging them to seize opportunities and overcome obstacles. Supported by organizations like the Covenant House and his family, Elijah's success is a source of inspiration for us all.

As Elijah prepares to pursue graphic design at Xavier University with a full scholarship, we celebrate his accomplishments and look forward to the positive impact he will undoubtedly make in his community.

Elijah Hogan's story reminds us of the incredible potential within each of our scholars. Let us continue to support and uplift them as they strive to achieve their dreams.

To see his story on WDSU-TV, click here.

Discover the Dynamic Curriculum at The Leah Chase School!

I’m delighted to announce the adoption of a comprehensive K-5 curriculum for The Leah Chase School, our district’s first permanent, direct-run traditional public school in nearly two decades. Opening for the 2024-2025 academic year, this decision aligns with our strategic plan, NOLA-PS Evolve, reinforcing our commitment to high-quality education.

The curriculum selection process was meticulous, ensuring that the chosen materials meet the highest standards of excellence. The selected curricula include:

  • ELA: HMH Into Reading
  • Mathematics: iReady Classroom Mathematics Louisiana
  • Science: Great Minds PhD Science
  • Social Studies: Core Knowledge Foundation Bayou Bridges

These curricula were chosen for their alignment with state and district standards, comprehensive subject coverage, and engagement relevance.

I’m confident these materials will empower educators and inspire scholars at The Leah Chase School to achieve academic excellence.

The Leah Chase School focuses on academic excellence, the arts, and cultural responsiveness, aiming to make a significant impact on students and the community.

For more information, visit

NOLA-PS Graduate Wins Car for Perfect Attendance

Tyran Zardies Jr., a graduate of The Willow School, won a 2024 Toyota Corolla LE during this year’s Stay in School Car Giveaway. Zardies, who plans to study finance at LSU, was one of 60 NOLA-PS scholars with perfect attendance in their senior year and was selected via raffle.

“It means a lot. I crashed my car last year,” said Zardies. “It’s going to really help me traveling back and forth from school, dropping my sister off to camp, and going back and forth from work.”

This marked the 18th consecutive year that NOLA-PS, in partnership with Premier Automotive Group and Toyota of New Orleans, awarded a new car to a graduate with perfect attendance.

I'd like to thank Troy Duhon, the Premier Automotive family, and all our sponsors for their generous partnership. Competing for a new car celebrates our seniors' commitment to education and highlights their exceptional dedication.

All 60 finalists received swag bags with $100 Amazon gift cards, and some received in-kind donations to upgrade their vehicle features.

Troy Duhon, founder and president of Premier Automotive, emphasized the importance of commitment, stating, “It truly determines your success in life.”

OPSB President Katie Baudouin and board members contributed $2,777.96 to help cover the vehicle's taxes and registration fees, recognizing the remarkable dedication and determination of these students and their families.

Summer Break Bliss: Fun Ways to Keep Kids Engaged!

As summer break approaches, we want our scholars to have a fun and fulfilling time. Here are some tips:

-Outdoor Activities:

  • Encourage kids to enjoy the outdoors with trips to parks, hikes, and outdoor games.

-Learning Opportunities

  • Keep minds engaged with educational activities like museum visits, science or art camps, and summer reading challenges.


  • Foster creativity with arts and crafts projects at home.

-Social Connections:

  • Encourage kids to stay connected with friends and family through playdates, outings, or virtual hangouts.

-Rest and Relaxation:

  • Ensure a balance between activities and relaxation for a well-rounded break.

These tips can help our scholars enjoy a memorable and rewarding summer!

Calling All Voices: Join Our Advisory Councils Today!

Your insights matter to us! Our Advisory Councils have been instrumental in providing invaluable feedback from families, teachers, scholars, and the wider community. Your input helps us understand what's working well and where we need to improve within our district and portfolio of schools.

We are actively seeking scholars, educators, families/parents, and community members to join our various advisory councils. Your participation will shape the future of education in our city.

Types of Advisory Councils:

  • Student Advisory Council: For students eager to make a difference in their education.

  • Teacher Advisory Council: Calling all educators to share their expertise and experiences.

  • Parent Advisory Council: Parents, your voice matters! Join us in shaping the education of our children.

  • Community Advisory Council: Open to all community members passionate about improving our schools.

To learn more about each advisory council and how to sign up, visit our website and follow us on social media. Your commitment and participation are crucial to the success of education in New Orleans.

Thank you for being a part of our vision to provide high quality schools for every child.

Tune In to Education Elevation: Spotlighting NOLA-PS!

Education Elevation’s premiered its second episode on WBOK 1230-AM Radio last week! Our latest episode featured a discussion about the future plans for one of our scholars, Amari Shepard, and explored the importance of community support and partnerships through a conversation with Darryl Kilbert.

This 30-minute segment, airing on the 4th Wednesday of every month at 11:30AM, is dedicated to engaging our community and providing updates on all things NOLA-PS.

In our inaugural episode, I had the pleasure of hosting Crystal LaFrance, the new principal of The Leah Chase School (TLC School). Our conversation was both meaningful and celebratory, serving as a fantastic opportunity to introduce her to the community. Crystal's passion for ensuring our scholars succeed academically, socially, and emotionally was truly inspiring. She also shared valuable insights on connecting with educators and staff to foster the thriving of TLC School.

Can't tune in live? Recordings of each segment will be available on NOLA-PS' social media platforms and YouTube channel. Tune in to stay informed and engaged with the latest news and developments about our district.

Click below to see the latest episode:

Important Upcoming Dates

  • June – Pride Month, National Hunger Awareness Month, National Safety Month
  • June 4 – OPSB Committee of the Whole
  • June 5 – NCAP Open Enrollment Kicks-Off
  • June 6 - Public Hearing: 2024-2025 Consolidated Budget
  • June 6 – OPSB Board Business Meeting
  • June 6 – National Hunger Awareness Day
  • June 9 – International Children’s Day
  • June 16 – Father’s Day
  • June 19 – Juneteenth

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