The George Rodrigue Foundation of the Arts and Judge Gene Thibodaux announced the expansion of the Louisiana A+ Schools (LAA+) network to Lake Charles Charter Academy for the 2016/2017 school year. At a press conference last month, Jacques Rodrigue read one of George Rodrigue’s children’s books and led students in a "Blue Dog”-themed art activity.
"These schools have been chosen through a competitive application process by demonstrating their commitment to innovative learning and the importance of the arts in every classroom,” says Jacques Rodrigue, executive director of the George Rodrigue Foundation of the Arts. "They join a nationwide network of 16 schools across the state of Louisiana and over 130 schools nationwide that are focused on whole school research-based transformation through the arts.”
LAA+ is the first whole school arts-integrated reform initiative of its kind to enter Louisiana. The LAA+ network provides teachers with the essentials to think more creatively about how students can apply learning to the real world, and how they can present curricula to students in ways they learn best.
The Center for Research and Creativity based in Los Angeles, CA, recently led a one-year independent evaluation of LAA+. After fifty classroom observations in twenty classrooms throughout three high-poverty schools, Dr. James Catterall, Professor Emeritus, UCLA and Director, Centers for Research on Creativity concluded that the program successfully increased teacher effectiveness through the arts.