U.S. Education Secretary King, Jr. To Visit Walter L. Cohen College Prep High School Friday

NEW ORLEANS – On Friday, September, 16, 2016, Walter L. Cohen College Prep High School students, faculty and staff will welcome U.S. Secretary of Education John B. King, Jr. and senior Department of Education officials to the Central City campus during the “Opportunity Across America,” bus tour.

         Those scheduled to attend the event include:


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• U.S. Secretary of Education John B. King, Jr.

• U.S. Attorney Kenneth Polite

• Recovery School District Superintendent Patrick Dobard

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• NOCP Founder/ President Ben Kleban

• NOCP Co-CEOS Andy Parker and Natalie Kaharick

• Cohen Principal Michael George

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• Cohen Students, Faculty, Staff and Alumni


         “We are extremely humbled and honored to be selected as a stop for Secretary King’s Bus Tour,” said Ben Kleban, Founder and President of New Orleans College Prep (NOCP). “The faculty, staff and I are consistently proud of and amazed by the hard work of our students. We extend much gratitude to the Opportunity Across America team for including us in this initiative.”

         Cohen was selected because its School Performance Score (SPS) has not only increased by double digits, but it represents a successful “turnaround” in the New Orleans public school system since Hurricane Katrina, school reps said. King has touted the success of Cohen during many of his speeches on successful turnaround models. Cohen has risen from an "F" to a "B" letter grade after just four years of NOCP management. Cohen has also achieved a 100 percent college acceptance rate and its graduates have earned more than $2 million in merit scholarship for two straight years, school reps said.

         “Cohen is eagerly anticipating the arrival of Opportunity Across America,” said Michael George, Cohen Principal in Residence. “We are incredibly pleased to share this experience and exposure with our students because while they will have the opportunity to learn from the success of our visitors they will also be able to showcase their own successes.”

         King will be greeted by Kleban, George, NOCP Co-CEOS Andy Parker and Natalie Kaharick and the Cohen College Prep Marching Band at 2:00 p.m. Secretary King will then observe classrooms and the tour will end with a student round-table discussion in Cohen’s Library. In addition, Cohen alumni and NOCP leadership will participate in the roundtable discussion.

         The schedule includes:


2:00 p.m.- 2:15 p.m. – Rally

2:15 p.m. – 2:25 p.m. – Meet and Greet

2:25 p.m. -2:40 p.m. – Classroom Observations

2:43 p.m. – 3:30 p.m. – Student Roundtable

3:35 p.m. -3:45 p.m. – Press Availability


         This is the seventh and final back-to-school bus tour for the U.S. Department of Education Officials. The tour kicked off on Monday, September 12, in the nation’s capital and will end at Cohen on Friday.

         This year’s “Opportunity Across America” tour included stops in Washington, D.C.; Charlottesville, Virginia; Bristol, Knoxville, Chattanooga and Memphis, Tennessee; Harvest, Alabama; Little Rock, Arkansas; Indianola, Mississippi; and Monroe, Baton Rouge and New Orleans, Louisiana.

         King and other senior Department officials will hold events touting President Obama Administration’s key initiatives over the past eight years, highlighting the progress made to expand opportunity across the nation and the groundwork laid for continued momentum.

         New Orleans College Prep (NOCP) is a 501(c)3 nonprofit organization that operates a network of public schools serving students in Pre-K through 12th grade in Orleans Parish including Walter L. Cohen College Prep, Lawrence D. Crocker College Prep, Sylvanie Williams College Prep, and John W. Hoffman College Prep. NOCP's mission is to prepare each of their students to enter and excel in a rigorous four ­year college or university. NOCP schools are open enrollment, tuition free, and committed to preparing our students for college and for life beyond through a strong academic program as well as extra­curricular programming focused on the arts, technology, and athletics.

         For more information



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