State law says the public is entitled to observe how government bodies make decisions. But Lusher board members privately discussed how to respond to the union, using a boardwide email group. And they set up several private meetings that appear to have circumvented the Open Meetings Law.
Schools run by the Orleans Parish School Board have been the top performers on standardized tests. That continued this year, but several charters in the Recovery School District inched past them. The challenge: Replicating what’s working.
Space would let elementary campus move in temporary classrooms, which gives the charter school flexibility as main campus repairs get underway. The portable buildings also will allow the school to increase enrollment.
Of the seven A schools in the city, just one buses its students. That means some students fortunate enough to get into one of the best schools must take hours-long rides on public transportation, making them and their parents uneasy.
It will cost $30 million to bring students to and from public schools this year, compared to $18 million the year before Katrina. The increase appears to be a consequence of citywide enrollment and the shift from a centrally-run school system. A few schools are working together to negotiate busing contracts.
As the rest of the city focused on the Super Bowl this past weekend, officials at Lusher Charter School had their minds on high school football – and potential injuries that their students could face next school year. Recent division changes made by the Louisiana High School Athletic Association pose a “danger” for students at Lusher and other schools in the city, board president Blaine LeCesne told school officials during a meeting Saturday.
A New Orleans police report regarding embezzlement at Lusher Charter School provides more details regarding the theft of $25,000 last school year, including the name of the employee involved. Accounting office employee Lauren Hightower, 30, forged the signature of Lusher Chief Executive Officer Kathy Riedlinger and others on six checks, according to the report released Friday to The Lens.
An employee in the accounting department at Lusher Charter School embezzled $25,000 last school year by forging five checks she wrote to herself from the school’s bank account, according to an audit report obtained by The Lens. The audit report doesn’t identify the “high ranking employee in the Business Office,” who was ultimately fired.
Audubon Charter School officials on Saturday were still feeling the sting. Two days earlier, an Orleans Parish School Board committee discussed whether to give the Henry W. Allen School building to Lusher Charter School.
Lusher Charter School CEO Kathy Riedlinger and High School Principal Wiley Ates announced Saturday that Lusher students’ “I Am” campaign idea had won $10,000 in the Drew Brees “Trust Your Crazy Ideas” competition, beating out St. Augustine High School, New Orleans College Prep Charter School, and Isidore Newman School.
Lusher has the highest performance score—170.7— in the state, among schools that run from kindergarten through grade 12, school leader Kathy Riedlinger advised the charter’s board of directors at their monthly meeting Oct. 12.
Lusher Charter School’s board of directors renewed the contract of the school’s chief executive officer and gave her and the school’s faculty a one-time pay bump at its monthly board meeting Saturday. Board members also discussed plans to refurbish school buildings, and work with the Recovery School District to tailor its centralized enrollment process to Lusher’s admission requirements.
The Lusher Charter School’s board announced at its annual budget meeting that ongoing building maintenance and raises for faculty and administrators will result in an increase in expenses in next year’s budget, effective July 1. The 2012-2013 budget hearing held Wednesday, June 6 at 10 a.m. was attended by school chief financial officer Lynden Swayze, school CEO Kathleen Riedlinger, board member Kristin Huston and two Lens reporters.
The board that runs Lusher Charter School’s three campuses, announced 3 percent budget increase from last year in its first draft of its 2012-2013 budget, which goes into effect July 1. The board, Advocates for Arts Based Education, will hold a public hearing on the budget Wednesday, June 5 at 10 a.m. at the Fortier Campus, 5624 Freret St., Room 207.
Lusher’s board of directors began their monthly meeting, March 3, with discussion of Governor Bobby Jindal’s education agenda and how the proposed legislation would affect Lusher. One Jindal proposal is to put more weight on SAT and ACT scores and other college preparation work to determine a high school’s School Performance Score (SPS).
The notice for Saturday’s Lusher Board meeting is reprinted below:
The Board of Directors of Advocates for Arts Based Education Corporation will be held Saturday, November 5, 2011 at 10:00 a.m., in Room 207, at 5624 Freret Street, New Orleans, Louisiana. Below is the Agenda For the Meeting.