Charter School Excellence Awards and Education Champion Awards Presented

NEW ORLEANS — The Louisiana Association of Public Charter Schools (LAPCS) honored several charter schools and education champions on December 13, 2017, as part of the organization’s 10th anniversary at the Louisiana Charter Schools Conference in New Orleans.

As part of its 2017 Charter School Excellence awards, LAPCS Executive Director Caroline Roemer was recognized for her 10 years of service leading the organization. In this role, Roemer has led LAPCS in its mission to support, promote, and advocate for the emergent Louisiana charter school movement.

“I’m honored to have been able to help create more choices for parents and families in Louisiana,” said Roemer. The award was presented by Jim Geiser, who led the Louisiana Charter School Association (2003-2007) before LAPCS was formed.

The 2017 Community Roots Award was presented to FirstLine Schools in New Orleans for their partnership with Goodwill Industries. The award recognizes a charter school that demonstrates a commitment to community engagement through the development of community partnerships to better meet the needs of their students, The janitorial partnership, one of the first of its kind in the city, is an outsourced contract that employs people with disabilities and individuals with economic barriers to employment.

University View Academy (UVA), the state’s highest performing online school, won the Innovative Education Award for their Early College High School, which launched in the fall of 2017. The UVA Early College High School is designed to ensure students earn a high school diploma as well as a college associate’s degree on graduation day.

“These two schools represent the best of charter school excellence by serving their communities and providing innovative educational opportunities to meet the needs of students and families,” said Caroline Roemer, executive director of LAPCS. “We are proud to count FirstLine Schools and University View Academy as members of our association, and by honoring their work, we hope to share their practices with other public schools statewide and replicate some of the successes they’ve seen.”

The two school winners received a $3,750 prize, generously sponsored by Business First Bank (Community Roots) and New Schools for Baton Rouge (Innovative Education).

Several other awards were presented at the event. The Excellence in Governance Award, made possible by the Hyatt Regency New Orleans, was presented to the entire board of the Kenner Discovery Health and Sciences Foundation in Jefferson Parish, for demonstrating exemplary leadership in board service. Additionally, the Excellence in Education Award was presented to State Representative Gary Carter (D-New Orleans) who was recognized for his work to strengthen and improve public education in Louisiana.

Please feel free to use the photos attached. To learn more about our award winners, please contact: [email protected]


Row 1: Caroline Roemer, All winners, FirstLine Schools
Row 2: FirstLine Schools, University View Academy, University View Academy
Row 3: Kenner Discovery Health Sciences, Rep. Gary Carter, Education Champion Award

About Louisiana Association of Public Charter Schools

The Louisiana Association of Public Charter Schools (LAPCS) is a 501c3 nonprofit organization whose mission is to support, promote, and advocate for the Louisiana charter school movement, increasing student access to high-quality public schools statewide. Learn more about LAPCS at