Nov 04, 2016

Department Releases Request for Information to Hundreds of Local and National Organizations

BATON ROUGE, La. - Today the Louisiana Department of Education released a Request for Information (RFI) for expert partners locally and across the country to join Louisiana's school and district leaders in their effort to transform the state's lowest-performing schools. Responses to the RFI will be used to invite selected partners to join school district leaders for a daylong interactive summit scheduled for January 19, 2017 in New Orleans at which school districts will begin to design plans for school improvement under the new Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA).

The RFI was sent to entities that have a track record of success in turning around schools, including not-for-profits, charter organizations, institutions of higher education, and traditional district school systems. At the January summit in New Orleans, school districts and selected partner organizations will begin a dialogue about the most effective strategies for improving schools. This dialogue will spark new ideas for districts taking on the hard work of building school level plans to improve the achievement of students in struggling schools and may lead to deeper partnerships between districts and the invited partners. Later in 2017, as part of Louisiana's ESSA plan, school districts will apply for federally funded grants of up to $500,000 annually to improve the performance of their most struggling schools.

Louisiana has dramatically reduced the number of D and F schools in the past several years benefiting thousands of students who otherwise would have been assigned to a struggling school. At the same time, there remain schools in our state whose challenges are significant, and in Louisiana's 100 lowest performing schools, fewer than 12 percent of students are achieving mastery on our state's exam and less than two-thirds of students are graduating. And while African-American students comprise nearly 40 percent of the student population across the state, they make up 75 percent of the student population served in the state's 100 most persistently struggling schools, making the improvement of these schools an issue of civil rights.

For additional information, please contact Laura Hawkins at laura.hawkins@la.gov.

Related Links:
Louisiana's Draft ESSA Framework
Fall ESSA Listening Tour Presentation

# # # # # #