Back to School

Pencil On White Background

As families across New Orleans navigate the uncharted waters of a 2020-2021school-year—whether in-person or through virtual classes—one thing is certain: the show must go on. Education continues to be a top priority for citywide families, and area schools are taking the steps necessary to make sure children are receiving the instruction so integral to healthy living and growing. Whether hitting the books, the computer, or the sports field, opportunities for learning abound for area children, even in a pandemic.

The city’s offerings for schools vary greatly, and families seeking specific options for curricula, extracurricular activities, and even spiritual guidance will find there are a wealth of options for kids of all ages. Whether you’re looking for Pre-K instruction, elementary learning, seamless K-12 transitions, high school programs, or college/university coursework, the following schools may speak to your family’s values. Additionally, health and shopping resources will help you get back-to-school ready.

Early Education

St. Andrew’s Episcopal School

St. Andrew’s Episcopal School is the oldest Episcopal school in New Orleans with 63 years of experience in educating the mind, body, and spirit of young children. St. Andrew’s enrolls boys and girls 12 months through Grade 8, offering ten+ years of nurturing yet challenging education that focuses on “Cherishing Childhood, Developing Character and Cultivating Leaders.” Faculty strive to teach each child in a manner that builds on his or her individual strengths, interests, and abilities while at the same time fostering teamwork within the greater School community.

St. Andrew’s utilizes small classes to promote a challenging learning environment where students interact with teachers and grow spiritually, socially and intellectually. A strong academic program, enhanced by state-of-the-art technology, includes Spanish, music, chapel, fine arts, athletics and information literacy skills. Student publications, dramatics, interscholastic sports, and community service round out St. Andrew’s program.

This year, virtual one-on-one tours and in person tours are available by appointment only. For more information, visit saesnola.org/admissions.

Jewish Community Day School of Greater New Orleans

Celebrating its twenty-fifth year, Jewish Community Day School of Greater New Orleans (JCDS) balances challenging academics with an enriching Jewish Studies program for children in Preschool through 6th Grade. At JCDS, each child is seen and each child is valued. With the benefit of small classes and differentiated instruction, kids find themselves meeting challenges that they never before thought themselves capable of tackling.

Now more than ever, understanding the interconnectedness of the world is essential to preparing students for adulthood. By learning about Jewish identity and history, by learning about each person’s duty to make the world a better place (Tikkun Olam), and by participating in a rigorous interdisciplinary curriculum, JCDS graduates become better critical thinkers, better advocates for themselves, and better advocates for others. Alumni leave prepared to continue the scholarship, service, and leadership that have been the hallmark of the Jewish community of New Orleans for nearly 300 years.   

To learn more or schedule a tour, visit jcdsnola.org or email admissions@jcdsnola.org.

Continuous Education / K-12

Ursuline Academy

Ursuline Academy is an all-girls Catholic school offering a diverse educational environment from Toddler 1 through 12th grade. Founded in 1727, Ursuline Academy of New Orleans enjoys the distinction of being the first all-girls’ Catholic school in the United States. As girls progress through the academy, a highly interactive approach exposes them to increasingly complex concepts in STEM and the arts that go beyond learning the material. Ursuline girls learn to think creatively, articulate their ideas confidently and compassionately, and solve problems collaboratively. Ursuline’s all-girls’ environment empowers students to challenge themselves, explore outside their comfort zones and expand what they are capable of achieving.

High School Open House (Grades 8-12) will be Thursday, October 22nd from 5 – 7 p.m. Elementary Open House (Toddler 1- Grade 7) will be Friday, October 23rd from 8:30 – 10 a.m. For more information, visit go.uanola.org or contact the Office of Admissions at 504-866-5292 or admissions@uanola.org.

Arden Cahill Academy

Arden Cahill Academy combines a strong education with the unique qualities of an outdoor country environment minutes from downtown. Nestled along Bayou Fatma in Gretna, the 12-acre campus currently serves students from six weeks in its Infant Center through High School. Arden Cahill Academy enrolled its first class of high school freshmen in August 2019 and is proud to continue its tradition of academic excellence and cultural enrichment through its college preparatory curriculum.

Horse stables and a petting farm, a STEAM Lab, art studios, band and music rooms, and a 300-seat theater make the Arden Cahill Academy campus unique. The academy also hosts Camp Corral, a 10-week summer camp.

For more information on face-to-face or virtual options for the 2020/2021 school year, please call 504-392-0902 or visit ardencahillacademy.com. Attend an Open House on October 22 from 9:30 a.m. to 6:30 p.m. Virtual or Private Tours will be scheduled by appointment.

Secondary & High School

Mount Carmel Academy

The Mount Carmel Academy experience is filled with opportunities for each student to pursue her passions, uncover new talents, grow spiritually, and discover the person God created her to become. The challenging curriculum enables students to cultivate critical thinking skills, communicate effectively, weigh social and religious values, and prepare for higher education. A 1:1 MacBook program enhances instruction and offers powerful collaborative and in-class possibilities. Small class sizes (average of 15) ensure each student receives individualized attention while developing meaningful connections with her teachers and peers.

As they navigate through a diverse selection of elective offerings and more than 50 extracurricular activities, students are encouraged to expand interests and become active participants in the community. Service to others is an integral part of a Mount Carmel education. Through hard work and reflection, students develop a deep respect for God, their families, and all of God’s creation. Teamwork and perseverance are found on and off the field on 26 teams in 11 sports.

Mount Carmel’s Open House will be Thursday, October 8, 2020. For more information, visit mcacubs.com, call 504-288-7630, or email admissions@mcacubs.org

Colleges & Universities

University of Holy Cross

The University of Holy Cross provides an atmosphere of learning and growth that not only expands the mind but also nourishes the heart. A fully accredited Catholic university in New Orleans, the University of Holy Cross (formerly Our Lady of Holy Cross College) offers more than 65 majors and programs to more than 1,000 students. With 154 faculty members and a student-faculty ratio of 10:1, students enjoy a personalized academic experience virtually and on a close-knit campus where they are encouraged to explore spiritual values and pursue service opportunities.

Some of the university’s most distinctive programs are in Business, Education, Healthcare, Counseling, and Nursing. The university was founded in 1916 as a mission of the Marianites of Holy Cross, whose distinguished history of educating minds and hearts dates to 1848. Located on the West Bank, minutes from downtown New Orleans, UHC offers an affordable, liberal arts education within a small, private university setting.

For more information, visit go.uhcno.edu.

Health Resources

The Blood Center

For a limited time, The Blood Center is screening all blood donations for COVID-19 antibodies. This free service informs the donor if they carry the COVID-19 antibody, which has been used via plasma transfusions to help critically ill patients battling the coronavirus.

Scheduled donations are required to practice social distancing and insure a safe, stable blood supply. Results post three to five days after a completed blood donation. Following donation, donors need to visit TheBloodCenter.org and log into My Account for their results. Donors testing positive for COVID-19 antibodies may be eligible to donate COVID Convalescent Plasma (CCP).

“We’ve seen promising results from patients who’ve received CCP, but there’s only a few recovered patients eligible to give at this time,” says Dr. Tim Peterson, Medical Director for The Blood Center. “The scarcity of donors with the COVID antibody make this test extremely beneficial to patient care.”

Testing also provides statistics to the Louisiana Department of Health about what percentage of the population was exposed to COVID-19. To schedule your blood donation and help save lives, visit TheBloodCenter.org or call 1-800-86-BLOOD.

Clothes, Books & Toys

Auraluz

For 50 years, locally based Auraluz has offered its children’s clothing, including its own Auraluz signature, hand-embroidered clothing brand. Auraluz is a one-stop-shop with items perfect for all occasions. Product offerings range from kitchen tools and home accessories to candles, locally themed items, personal care, dolls, plush, books and toys. You’ll also find one of the largest selections of Maison Berger/ Lampe Berger fragrance products at Auraluz.

Centrally located in Metairie, just one block from Clearview and West Esplanade, Auraluz occupies a freestanding building with plenty of parking, which makes it a great spot for stress-free shopping. Auraluz also offers easy online ordering through ShopAuraluz.com (with baby-bridal-gift registry), convenient store pick-up, and virtual/private shopping appointments.

The store is open 10 a.m. – 5:30 p.m., Monday through Friday, and 10 a.m. – 4 p.m. on Saturday. Auraluz is located at 4408 Shores Drive in Metairie. For more information, call 504-888-3313 or visit ShopAuraluz.com. •

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