River Parishes added to state voucher program

Published 11:45 pm Friday, May 25, 2012

LAPLACE – With the aim of providing families with greater educational choices and an increased opportunity for success, state lawmakers recently expanded the Student Scholarships for Educational Excellence Program to cover schools across Louisiana.

The statewide program is open to kindergarten through 12th grade students allowing parents to send their children to approved nonpublic schools and also high performing public schools. Eight of the schools involved in the program are located in the River Parishes.

Starting today, families will be able to apply for the statewide Scholarship program at www.louisianaschools.net/topics/scholarships_for_excellence.html. Parents have until June 29 to submit applications to approved schools. Schools in the River Parishes that are part of the program include the following:

St. John the Baptist Parish:

• Our Lady of Grace, which has 45 slots for kindergarten, 13 for first grade, 15 for second grade, 17 for third grade, 12 for fourth grade, 14 for fifth grade, 12 for sixth grade, 12 for seventh grade and 10 for eighth grade.

• Ascension of Our Lord, which has five for kindergarten, six for first grade and seven for second grade.

• St. Peter Catholic School, which has five spots for kindergarten, five for first grade, five for second grade, five for third grade, three for fourth grade, three for fifth grade, three for sixth grade and three for seventh grade.

• St. Joan of Arc Catholic School, which has 15 for kindergarten, eight for first grade, seven for second grade, two for third grade, five for fifth grade and four for seventh grade.

• Steps to Success Learning Center, which has three for first grade, five for second grade, three for third grade and four for fourth grade.

• St. Charles Catholic High School, which has one for eighth grade, two for ninth grade, two for 10th grade, two for 11th and two for 12th.

St. James Parish:

• St. Peter Chanel Interparochial School, which has two for kindergarten.

St. Charles Parish:

• Boutte Christian Academy, which has 50 for kindergarten, four for second grade and two for third grade.

• Sacred Heart of Jesus School, which has four for kindergarten, seven for first grade, three for second grade, two for third grade, four for fourth grade, two for fifth grade and two for sixth grade.

After the application process is completed and eligibility is determined, the Department of Education will identify scholarship recipients through a prioritized lottery process in July. All applicants will be notified of the results of the lottery no later than July 31.

To be eligible, a child must have been enrolled in a public school during the 2011-2012 school year that was labeled C, D or F under the school performance guidelines, unless a student is entering kindergarten for the first time in the 2012-2013 school year. Students must also be a resident of Louisiana and meet income eligibility requirements.

For more information about the scholarship program, please contact Studentscholarships@la.gov or call the Louisiana Department of Education’s Help Center at 1-877-453-2721.