Sep 24, 2012

Education Chief Launches Statewide Listen and Learn Tour

BATON ROUGE, La. - Superintendent John White will head back out on the road to visit schools and communities around the state to learn first-hand from students, parents, teachers and school leaders how Louisiana Believes is affecting student learning. The school tour will take White to district, charter and scholarship schools in 26 parishes. The tour will highlight expansion of Advanced Placement (AP) and International Baccalaureate (IB) programs, Compass and Common Core standards, career education in the Course Choice program, pre-kindergarten reforms, and the expanded Scholarship Program.

"Louisiana Believes is based on the belief that all students can achieve academic success, and that those closest to students - parents and teachers, not bureaucrats - should be empowered to make decisions to support the success of their students," said White. "If we are going to empower educators and parents to make change for their children, it’s critical that they lead us in the plan’s implementation. We must have their input and insight every step of the way as we enact change."

Under the Louisiana Believes plan, the state is raising academic standards, expanding educational choices to families, and empowering teachers with the tools to ensure each student is on track to succeed in college and professional careers. Louisiana schools are adopting Common Core State Standards, using the Compass system to provide teacher feedback. Also, every high school will offer AP courses, and the state will invest in training large numbers of teachers to start AP programs at their schools. Course Choice will expand workforce training in the work setting, and the expanded Scholarship program will provide alternatives to families with students in struggling schools. The state is also designing a system of uniform academic standards for all early childhood programs.

Superintendent White’s schedule is subject to change, but will include meetings on the following dates in the following parishes:

 Date  Parish*

September 25, 2012

Iberville Parish
Terrebonne Parish

September 26, 2012

East Baton Rouge Parish

October 1, 2012

Acadia Parish
Cameron Parish

October 2, 2012

Vernon Parish
Natchitoches Parish
DeSoto Parish
Caddo Parish

October 3, 2012

Bienville Parish
Webster Parish
Claiborne Parish

October 4, 2012

Grant Parish

October 8, 2012

Plaquemines Parish

October 22, 2012

Recovery School District - New Orleans

October 23, 2012

West Feliciana Parish
Concordia Parish
Catahoula Parish

October 24, 2012

LaSalle Parish
Caldwell Parish (Tentative)
Franklin Parish

October 25, 2012

West Carroll Parish
Tensas Parish

October 26, 2012

St. James Parish

October 30, 2012

St. John Parish (Tentative)

*School sites will be provided at later dates.

Since being named State Superintendent in January, White has outlined the Louisiana Believes plan for thousands of educators and parents through in-person meetings and virtual town halls. By the conclusion of 2012, White will have personally visited educators and community leaders in every Louisiana parish or city school system. In addition to scheduled meetings with Superintendent White, Louisiana Believes advisory committees will continue to meet quarterly to offer ongoing support for the implementation of the plan. The committees are comprised of teachers, principals, district superintendents, charter school leaders, parents and community members.

# # #