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Logistics of Lagniappe’s pending move to Orleans Avenue still in flux, but on schedule

Lagniappe Academies continues to prepare for its move to a new building for the coming school year, but timing and other variables are still in play.

Board members first announced the move to 4217 Orleans Ave. at their Jan. 15 meeting. At Lagniappe’s March board meeting, Chief Financial Officer Ninh Tran called the impending transition a  work in progress.

The school is moving to the current site of FirstLine Schools’ John Dibert Community School. But Dibert’s staff cannot vacate until renovation of Phillis Wheatley Elementary School, their new home, is complete. Tran said he’s been told renovations at Wheatley are  behind schedule, but are still expected to be finished by July.

The future of Lagniappe’s modular buildings is also up in the air. Charter school organizations, nonprofits and construction companies have expressed interest in buying or leasing them, Tran said, but no offers have been accepted so far.

Some companies have also expressed interest in moving into the modulars at Lagniappe’s current location, 1501 St. Louis St. The school’s lease expires in January.

Tran said Lagniappe has received $60,000 from the Recovery School District as part of Orleans Parish School Board’s $39 million surplus. Lagniappe will receive another $80,000  owed for 2010 sometime next month.

Board members did not set a date for their next meeting because the third week will coincide with iLEAP testing. They agreed, however, to hold board meetings on Thursdays, not Wednesdays as they have been in the past.

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