For New Orleans Students, Katrina Was Only the Beginning

The world watched in horror as Hurricane Katrina devastated New Orleans and much of the Gulf Coast in 2005. But for New Orleans’ public school students, parents, and teachers, the tragedy of Katrina was just the beginning.

“A Perfect Storm: The Takeover of New Orleans Public Schools,” the first in series of short videos, shows the inside story of how the recovery from Katrina gave education officials and corporate reformers the perfect opportunity to make drastic changes to New Orleans’ public schools with virtually no community input or accountability.

It’s a story that all Americans concerned for the future of our children’s education need to know. As filmmaker Phoebe Ferguson put it:
“It was important to make this series of short videos because, although there have been many attempts to get the truth out about the realities the failed education reforms in New Orleans, film can often reach a far greater number of people and have a more immediate impact than even the most in-depth research papers. Now I, along with my co-producer Raynard Sanders, and education colleagues have the opportunity to use these videos to help make the public aware and to reclaim public education in New Orleans.”For longtime parent activist Karran Harper Royal, this film gives the public “a glimpse of what the real costs are to all of us for the creation of this ‘all-charter’ district. It’s important to spread the truth we parents know all too well — our city’s schools are being transformed by disenfranchising the people of New Orleans.”

Watch the video here:

A Perfect Storm: The Takeover of New Orleans Public Schools Part One 17 Days in November from N.O. Education Equity Roundtable on Vimeo.