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Louisiana's Dropout Problem (2009)

Louisiana Public Square



Genre: Panel

Place Covered: Louisiana

Copyright Holder: Louisiana Educational Television Authority

Date Issued: 2009-03-25

Duration: 00:57:54

Subjects: Filmed panel discussions | Education | High school dropouts | Truancy


  • Courtney, Beth Host
  • Freeman, Craig Host
  • Godoy, Al Producer
  • Gautreaux, Kevin Producer
  • Smith, John Warner Interviewee
  • Jackson, Richey Interviewee
  • Nola-Ganey, Donna Interviewee
  • Weimer, Yvonne Interviewee
  • Fannin, Jim Interviewee
  • Smith, Billie Interviewee
  • Holmes, Ronnie Interviewee
  • Breaux, Carolyn Speaker
  • Creed, Aline Speaker
  • Vining, Marie Speaker
  • Smith, Arlene Speaker
  • Woods, Regina Speaker
  • Dimaio, Edna Speaker
  • Darcey, Madeline Speaker
  • Hawkins, Edward Speaker
  • Coleman, Diane Speaker
  • Jones, Shantell Speaker
  • Rodrigue, Bianca Speaker
  • Lenoir, Ronell Speaker
  • Young, John Speaker
  • Keblys, Kestutis Speaker
  • Pastorek, Paul Panelist
  • Nichols, Kristy Panelist
  • Monaghan, Steve Panelist
  • Jackson, Richey Panelist


This episode of the series “Louisiana Public Square” from March 25, 2009, features Craig Freeman leading a discussion between the audience members and panelists on Louisiana’s high school dropout rate. A background report on the topic precedes the discussion. It includes interviews with: John Warner Smith, CEO of Education’s Next Horizon; Richey Jackson, director of the Bossier Parish and Webster Parish Truancy Assessment and Service Center; Donna Nola-Ganey of the Louisiana Department of Education; Yvonne Weimer of the Ascension Parish School Board; State Representative Jim Fannin; Billie Smith, a teacher at McKinley High School; and Ronnie Holmes, a student at Delgado Community College. The audience members then discuss the reasons behind Louisiana’s high school dropout problem. A panel of experts then joins the audience to answer their questions. The panelists are: State Superintendent of Education Paul Pastorek; Secretary Kristy Nichols of the Louisiana Department of Social Services; Steve Monaghan, president of the Louisiana Federation of Teachers; and Richey Jackson, the director of the Bossier Parish and Webster Parish Truancy Assessment and Service Center. They discuss: the importance of early childhood education; truancy; moving to in-school suspensions; implementing best practices around the state; community involvement; alternative settings for disruptive students; and identifying at-risk students. Hosts: Beth Courtney and Craig Freeman