Public schools in Louisiana and across the country are facing significant challenges resulting from the pandemic which has made inequities present in our state increasingly visible; inequities that include limited access to food, physical and mental health care, transportation, technology, housing, and more – all of which significantly impact a student’s opportunity to learn. School closures due to COVID-19 have placed a spotlight on the impact of these inequities and it is vital that schools and districts, as they are preparing for the fall and beyond, keep educational equity central so that our response to these unprecedented circumstances does not compound disparities that already existed for economically disadvantaged students and students of color.

These gaps and disparities are illustrated in the second edition of the Advancing Educational Equity for Public Schools in New Orleans report, the summary of which is now available. The most recent report finds that many gaps remain unchanged or have grown since the first edition in 2017, despite increases in overall school performance.
Similar trends were found for public schools in East Baton Rouge Parish, as documented in the report we released in the fall of 2019, Advancing Educational Equity in Public Schools in Baton Rouge, which found that achievement gaps begin in elementary school and persist through high school. The Baton Rouge report can be viewed here.

For that purpose, the Urban League of Louisiana is sharing a framework for statewide education equity. This framework outlines the Urban League’s commitment to see equity infrastructure built into our education systems moving forward so that all students and families have the resources and support to succeed in school and in life. Read our strategic approach.