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.

February 2024 RECAP

(Click picture below to start video)

The Leah Chase: A Beacon of Cultural Richness & Academic Excellence

Last week, we gathered with board members, the press, our school district family, and community members for the highly anticipated Leah Chase School Press Conference. Before I share some of the details, I'd like to extend our deepest condolences to the Chase family on the passing of Mr. Edgar L. “Dooky” Chase, III. As a lifelong educator, his dedication to shaping the lives of scholars left an indelible mark.

In this historic moment during National Public Schools Week and Black History Month, we were thrilled to announce the birth of The Leah Chase School. Named in honor of the culinary icon Leah Chase, the school aspires to be more than just an educational institution, aiming to become a beacon of cultural richness amplifying the voices of New Orleans' history.

The Leah Chase School will serve students in grades K-5 starting in the 2024-25 school year, expanding each year until the 8th grade. We aim to enroll 320 students.

To see the press conference and learn all the details about the new school, click here.

NOLA-PS' Black History Month Events Recap

I am thrilled to share NOLA-PS' Black History Month events, showcasing the exceptional talents and intellect of our scholars.

First, a round of applause for the brilliant scholars at Bethune Elementary who participated in the Black History Quiz Bowl on Feb. 8. I am extremely proud of each scholar, and want to extend a special congratulations to our winners:

  • Cammeryn O'Neal (moderator)
  • O'Mari Buckner (highest scorer)
  • Meghan Knox
  • Hallie Dolliole
  • Demi McPherson
  • Alliayah Willingham

Your dedication and achievements have truly shone through.

Next, we hosted a thought-provoking Black History Debate with The Delores Taylor Arthur School for Young Men. The topic, "Should race-centered topics be taught in U.S. K-12 public schools?" spurred insightful discussions among our scholars. The replay of this enlightening debate will be available this week on our YouTube channel.

Our final event - the Black History Celebration at the Ashé Cultural Arts Center Powerhouse Theater was an exciting evening filled with performances from the McMain Grammy award-winning International Singing Mustangs. Their captivating voices were followed by an education panel featuring educators and community members Larry Washington, Adrinda Kelly, Barbara Major, and me. We discussed various paths towards creating the best educational experiences for the scholars in our city. Last, but not least, I had the honor to both sponsor and present the first-ever Equity in Action Scholarship Awards. The awards were designed to support deserving high school seniors who are pursuing college and/or career plans.

Congratulations to Amari Ann Shepherd and Victoria Rose Cager! They're the distinguished recipients of the scholarships. Amari, from Frederick A. Douglass High School, was award the Equity in Action $1,000 scholarship. She boasts a remarkable cumulative GPA of 4.86 and aspires to become a judge, ultimately sitting on the Supreme Court. Her deep commitment to social justice was ignited by witnessing George Floyd's tragic incident. Victoria received the Equity in Education $500 scholarship. She's a student at NOCCA and has a cumulative GPA of 4.38 and will be attending Spelman College for Environmental Studies. Her dedication to addressing environmental injustices and promoting equity is truly remarkable. Congratulations to both scholars for their outstanding achievements and commitment to creating positive change.

We know your futures will be bright!

Amari Ann Shepherd

Frederick A. Douglass H.S

Victoria Rose Cager


Exciting News for Our Educators!

We are thrilled to announce the launch of our monthly virtual professional development sessions for teachers - the Joyful Educator Connection! Led by our Lead Teachers, these 45-minute virtual sessions aim to create a space for connection, support, and collaboration.

These connections kicked off Mon. Feb. 26th, we invite all educators to mark their calendars for the last Monday of each month to join these transformative virtual support sessions. The first session was successfully held last week.

To register for future sessions, teachers can visit our website at and click on the registration link. Join us in unlocking a world of professional growth, collaboration, and joy!

February's JOYful Educator Connection

The recent JOYful Educator Connection at the TEP Center was nothing short of extraordinary!

Educators were able to see exhibits and learn more about the history of civil rights in New Orleans. They also had a chance to delve into the vibrant realm of art courtesy of Community Works of Louisiana, a non-profit organization fostering youth engagement through innovative after-school programs and summer camps.

Dr. Leona Tate, a pivotal figure in the desegregation of McDonogh 19 Elementary School in the 1960's, joined our connection. She shared information about her compelling book, which left an indelible mark, turning the event into a jubilant celebration of history, inspiration, and the sheer JOY of learning.

Due to Spring Break, the next JOYful Educator Connection will take place April 30th. We will post the registration link on our website next month.

To learn more about the Portrait of a Graduate attributes, click here.

To nominate a scholar, click here.

Important Upcoming Dates

  • March 1: Employee Appreciation Day
  • March 2: Youth Run NOLA 504K Race
  • March 2: National Read Across America Day
  • March 3-9: School Social Work Week
  • March 4: National Maintenance Workers Appreciation Day
  • March 4-8: National School Breakfast Week
  • March 8: International Women's Day
  • March 10: Daylight Savings Time Starts
  • March 17: St. Patrick's Day
  • March 19: OPSB Committee of the Whole
  • March 21: OPSB Business Board Meeting
  • March 23: Big 75th Bass Fishing Rodeo @ City Park
  • March 26: Dr. Rosalynne B. Dennis Fitness Challenge - OPENING CEREMONY
  • March 26: Ochsner + Saints Scholastic Book Fairs

Stay Connected with NOLA-PS!

We're Social!
Facebook  Twitter  Instagram  YouTube

Partner with us!

Become a NOLA-PS CAREs Ambassador!

Click picture above to contact us.

Stay Connected with Me!

I'm Social!
Email  Facebook  Instagram  Twitter