Lanier Charter Elementary School attracts parents despite poor scores
BATON ROUGE - Lanier Charter Elementary School received a failing grade last school year.
But, with 91 students and 21 percent of the current school population coming from East Baton Rouge Parish Schools in the 2010- 2011 academic year, parents still choose to send their kids there.
Evelyn Gauthreaux, principle at Lanier Charter Elementary, says she knew she had her hands full when she became the principal at Lanier Charter. She says, "I came in on June 24th and I knew that the performance was not where it needs to be."
Gauthreaux said to improve the students' learning experience she decided to implement a unique approach to teaching.
There is 22 to 1 student ratio at Lanier Charter, and classrooms are separate for boys and girls once students reach 4th grade. Gauthreaux says that cuts down on distractions.
Chad Martin's two children and nephew attend Lanier Charter Elementary. He says the smaller classes and the accessibility of the teachers drew him there. He says, "The teachers know the kids and the parents, they take the time to teach.
Also, the students walk by a data board every day that lists each grades' academic performance.
But Gauthreaux says the most important reason parents choose to enroll their kids at her school is that they sense how much they believe in children.
"We provide them structure. We give them hope," said Gauthreaux. "We tell them that their kids are smart. We let them know that we wont give up on them."
Lanier Charter Elementary School was taken over by the state two years ago. Later the year the school granted a charter to Advance Baton Rouge Charter School Association.