Monday, August 31, 2015

Ten Years After Hurricane Katrina, New Orleans Schools Are Better, But Still Need Work.

Near the ten-year anniversary of Hurricane Katrina’s devastation of New Orleans, The Huffington Post has two stories on how city schools are doing. Former Louisiana superintendent of schools Paul Pastorek wrote a piece in The Huffington Post (8/28, Pastorek) where he recalls that more than 100 schools in the city were severely damaged by the storm. Between 2007 and 2011 he worked with Governor Kathleen Blanco and Senator Mary Landrieu to using emergency federal funding to restore the schools. Some of them are now in better condition then they were even before the storm. Louisiana’s Recovery School District helped enable that recovery by allowing local principals and teachers to run their schools, “rather than imposing a top-down bureaucracy.” In another piece, The Huffington Post (8/29, Workneh and Klein) reports that education in New Orleans has “steadily improved since 2005, the year Hurricane Katrina devastated the city.” Two reporters interviewed educators in the city to find out how the schools have improved so much, and also what else still needs to be done. Among their findings, the reports conclude that while success has increased, poverty still has a big impact on students and there is still a huge need for more experienced teachers in the city.

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