Bricolage Academy will welcome its inaugural class of 73 kindergarteners on Monday, and school leader Josh Densen says all systems are a go.

“We understand you’ll be opening a school here on Monday and we’d appreciate a report on that,”  board president Alan Philipson said with a smile as he opened the board meeting Thursday night.

Densen was still wide awake for a 6 p.m. board meeting after waking up at 5 a.m. to personally ride the school bus on a test run greeting students practicing at their bus stops.

Of the 73 incoming kindergarteners, Densen said his staff has already completed diagnostic testing on 68.

“Without losing any instructional time, we know exactly where they are,” he said.

Director of Finance and Operations Ashley Beckner said 35 students will be taking the bus and the others will arrive by carpool. Beckner said parents are invited to ride the bus with their students on the first day and the bus will drop parents back off at home.

Bricolage will operate out of Touro Synagogue on St. Charles Avenue this year. Densen said he contacted Councilwoman LaToya Cantrell regarding increased traffic due to the school. Densen said the city’s Planning Department would have to do a traffic study to determine if any signage changes are necessary.

The board discussed several housekeeping matters going into the final weekend before the school opened.

Board member discussed the possibility of allowing Densen to wire money from two bank accounts the school uses to keep private donations and government funds separate — something finance committee chair Jeff Teague said simplifies accounting.

But after a long discussion, Densen and board members agreed the school could simply rely on checks to transfer funds between the accounts.

Densen also announced the young charter school was the recipient of a $250,000 start-up grant from the Walton Family Foundation.

Board members discussed the goals and an accountability standard for Densen, though they tabled a vote so members could review the revisions over the next month.

The board approved several changes to its bylaws, including establishing a public comment policy, conflict of interest policy and recognizing Robert’s Rules of Order as its operating procedure.

The board will likely add a public policy committee and eliminate a few other committees,  Philipson said. But after discussion, board members decided to table that action until next month.

Members Philipson, Teague, Cindy Nuesslein, Jen Medbery, Jade Brown Russell, Jonah Evans and Rob Garda were present for the two-hour 40-minute meeting.

Marta Jewson

Marta Jewson covers education in New Orleans for The Lens. She began her reporting career covering charter schools for The Lens and helped found the hyperlocal news site Mid-City Messenger. Jewson returned...