Friday, September 21, 2012

The Other Good News About the Louisiana Voucher Program

Last week, the Louisiana Department of Education reported that nearly 4,944 students are participating in the expanded Student Scholarships for Educational Excellence (SSEE) Program this year.  As nearly 5,000 families celebrated hearing that their children would be escaping poor-performing public schools and education reform advocates celebrated a large growth in parental options in the Bayou State, one part of the story got lost in the news.

The Department reported that 118 schools were participating in the program and one school—Park Vista Elementary in St. Landry Parish—was the only public school accepting voucher students.

The school, located in Opelousas, La., is the only B-rated school in the Parish.  Not only is the school high-performing, it serves a large percentage of students living in poverty.

The school decided to participate because the staff wanted to help students.

"To be honest with you the staff are the ones that said ‘why don't we do that,’ said Park Vista Elementary Principal Ulysse Joubert.  “I said very good."

Watch a report about the school below.

The school received 33 applications for the 25 spots available.

"You wanna give as many chances as you can to as many people," said Joubert.

Park Vista Elementary gets what the voucher program is all about.  It’s about letting children have access to great schools—private, charter, and public schools.  The school is leading the way in helping Louisiana’s children.  Hopefully, more public schools will open their doors to Louisiana children in the future.

- American Federation for Children | Alliance for School Choice, MSG

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