Jessica Williams

Recent Stories

Inside Eureka Math: Does a popular Common Core math curriculum move too fast for young students?

This story was produced by NOLA.com|The Times-Picayune and reprinted with permission. It’s been a familiar scene in Louisiana public schools for more than a decade, that point in fourth grade…

Some New Orleans charters take extra steps to reach students with mental health needs

The Lens New Orleans This story is part of a series on children’s mental health needs in New Orleans. Other installments in the series include: With…

Debra Roberts cares for her three great-nephews, all of whom have serious mental health issues. With the help of school counseling and social service agencies, the boys are doing better. (Photo: Jessica Williams / The Lens)

With help of school counseling, New Orleans family tackles mental disorders of three siblings

The Lens Debra Roberts figured she could handle the boys. She knew they had problems, sure. Five years of foster care and frequent abuse only amplified a genetic predisposition…

Recovery School District charters inching past historic top-performers in New Orleans

The Lens As you’d expect, New Orleans’ historically strong schools were again the top performers on this year’s standardized tests. But in a few grades, schools with less…

New Orleans school closure process has uneven effect on students at failing schools

The Lens When the Recovery School District closed the failing Murray Henderson Elementary last summer, Linda Wattigney’s three grandchildren were assigned to Paul Habans Charter School.

You want local, elected school boards? Charter-based voting would do it

The Lens It’s a common gripe among critics of New Orleans school reform: Charter school governance is too clubby. Self-selected and autonomous boards can’t be voted out by constituents,…