North Baton Rouge parents want new charter schools to come to their community

Photo provided by staff.

POSTED: Tuesday, August 13, 2013 - 7:00pm

UPDATED: Thursday, August 15, 2013 - 10:24am

The state has approved more charter schools to come to Baton Rouge, but parents in north Baton Rouge stepped up Tuesday to voice the need for these schools in their community.

Tia Fulghum knows how inconvenient it can be to travel to the other side of town just to go to school.

"Growing up in a pretty bad school district myself. I grew up in Detroit public schools, and my mother had to send me on the other side of town to get a decent education," Fulghum said.

Fulghum said she does not want her daughter to have to do the same.

"I want for her to be able to have the same quality education in the neighborhood that she lives in," Fulghum said.

Baton Rouge already has seven charter schools, and now the Board of Elementary and Secondary Education have received the "okay" to bring more charters to Baton Rouge. Fulghum said she hopes some of those schools will come to north Baton Rouge.

"That means to me that the other kids in our community can get a quality education in our neighborhood," Fulghum said. "I don't think it's fair to the people in our community that we would have to send our kids to someone else's neighborhood to get the same education their kids get."

Yolanda Braxton feels the same.

"I want to see if we can get them here because our community needs it. North Baton Rouge for sure needs it," Braxton said. "I mean, I'm about whatever is best for the kids rather it be EBR, the charter schools, or whatever. What I've seen so far, I just felt that the charter schools will be good for North Baton Rouge."

State Superintendent of Education John White said he hears the parents requests, and he is listening.

"We've got too many struggling schools in Baton Rouge. That's just a fact one way or the other," White said. "The key thing is that parents are out here saying 'This is what I want for my kids. What I want is a rigorous education. I want quality, and I want consistency.' We're hearing that."

State Superintendent White said the number of new charter schools in Baton Rouge will be decided by the need. The board will work with parents and the community to decide where those charter schools will be located.  

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You can't put nice things in North BR and expect them to stay nice. It's a painful fact.

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