Progress is in Our Hands
Progress is in Our Hands
Feel free to explore the excellent list of resources listed. If you have any questions about the information found on this page, you can contact the Chamber office at Info@NatchitochesChamber.com.
We believe that all children, regardless of race, religion, economic status, or address, should have access to quality education delivered by passionate, well-prepared, well-resourced educators. We believe that when our teachers are treated with respect and given the tools they need, all our students can succeed, despite the challenges present in some classrooms but prevalent in too many. We know that educating children is a difficult task, the burden of which cannot be placed entirely on the shoulders of the school system, but we know that a cadre of respected and supported principals, teachers and administrators can graduate amazing students ready for the post-secondary world.
Therefore, we commit to educating the community to the challenges and opportunities found in our district. We encourage elected and appointed school leaders to aspire to only the highest gauges of success. We support an administration that places the education of the most challenging children at the top of their priority list, knowing that others will be educated along the way. We support and encourage community groups that enable, teach, train and mentor volunteers to assist with before-school, after-school and summer education. We know that literacy skills can literally make the difference in a child’s education trajectory and support community-based programs that work with or in addition to the school system to bolster our students’ ability.
We know that the ramifications of early childhood learning, from birth to five years, ripple across the community for generations. We support the framework of early learning throughout all publicly-funded centers and encourage the community to support through giving via tax credit programs, or giving of their time and experience.
In short, we know and believe that the children of Natchitoches Parish can succeed as well as anyone, anywhere. With that knowledge, we will hold our elected and appointed leaders accountable to strive for excellence in every pursuit; to be good stewards of public dollars; to lead our students not just by lesson, but by example; and to aggressively pursue active and meaningful partnerships throughout the community to ensure a strong support system for the children in Natchitoches Parish.
To set the direction for these ideals, we have named five goals to achieve by the end of the 2025-2026 school year:
- Natchitoches Parish should have no C, D, or F schools
- At least half of the graduating class should have some form of dual enrollment credit
- At least half of our students should be scoring at Mastery or above
- Our district ACT score should be a 21 or higher
- Our graduation rate should be at least 95% of each cohort
In conclusion, we trust that community members share this vision for success and will work together with each other and with the Chamber and business community to elect representatives that also share this vision. Together we march toward our goals.
School Performance Scores
The school system performance score communicates how well a school system is preparing all of its students for the next level of study. It is calculated like a school performance score, but includes all students in the school system.
We believe that it is important for parents, students and community stakeholders to learn more about the programs in place geared towards the enrichment of our education environment. The Chamber has invested time and money in many of these programs.
The A+ Coalition is an education initiative of the Natchitoches Area Chamber of Commerce that works to bring members of the community together to advance education in Natchitoches Parish. The Chamber recognizes the importance of education to the success and growth of our community, and understands that the responsibility lies not only on the shoulders of our educators, but on the entire community at large. The A+ Coalition aims to offer a platform for organizations and individuals to get involved, stay informed, and give of their time and resources to make an impact on education in Natchitoches Parish.
The Education Fund is a 501c3 provides assistance to the area's educational needs in PreK12, Technical College and University levels. Examples of support include, but are not limited to, support of middle school math and robotics teams; advancing industry-based certification efforts; helping to stand up science, technology, engineering and mathematics(STEM)-based summer camps; and implementing Project Lead the Way in Natchitoches Parish Schools. Click here to learn more.
Early Childhood Education
Since 2011, the Natchitoches Area Chamber of Commerce has partnered with the NSU Child and Family Network, a resource and referral agency, to offer the Natchitoches Early Childhood Project. The Chamber recognizes the importance of the earliest formative years for our little ones and uses funds from this program to provide enhanced environments in local, Class A, Quality Start early childhood education centers. Click here to learn more.
Dolly Parton Imagination Library
Reading regularly with preschool-age children gives them the biggest boost toward a successful education they will ever get. Dolly Parton's Imagination Library will send every child that registers a carefully selected book each month, every year until their 5th birthday. All Natchitoches Parish residents are eligible for this program! Click here to learn more.
ACT Work Ready Community
Being a Certified Work Ready Community provides a real, quantitative measurement of our workforce in several key areas. The program connects the emerging, transitional and currently employed workforce with employers in ways that help reduce employee turnover, training times and orientation, while providing employees at all levels a nationally-recognized certificate indicative of job-readiness. Click here to learn more.
Project Lead the Way
Northwestern State University serves as Project Lead The Way (PLTW)'s engineering affiliate university for the state of Louisiana, housed in the Department of Engineering Technology. NSU facilitates professional development programs for Elementary Launch (ELE), Gateway, Engineering (ENG), and Computer Science (CS) through its core training, conferences, and other professional development opportunities as well as program initiatives and statewide/regional support and communication. Click here to learn more.
Jump Start is Louisiana’s new Career and Technical Education program. Through Jump Start students earn industry credentials while still in high school. Jump Start students graduate high school prepared to secure a high-wage job and attend a technical or community college. Click here to learn more.
Advanced Manufacturing Technician (AMT) Program
The Chamber and Natchitoches Community Alliance partnered with Northwestern State University and Central Louisiana Technical and Community College to bring students the Advanced Manufacturing Technician (AMT) Program will earn an Associate of Science Degree in Engineering Technology from Northwestern State University (NSU). This degree combined with additional technical courses through the Central Louisiana Technical Community College (CLTCC)—Natchitoches Campus will result in an AMT Certificate from CLTCC. Click here to learn more.
We believe parents and community stakeholders should engage in a discussion about our schools and education system.
The Natchitoches Parish School Board meets the first Tuesday and Thursday of the month, at the Natchitoches Parish School Board Office, 310 Royal Street. Click here to engage.
The first five years of life are critical to a child's development. A child who attends a high quality early learning center will develop better language and math skills, be prepared for school success, get along well with others, and exhibit fewer behavior problems. Click here to engage.
The Chamber has created a list of contact information for our schools' Parent Teacher Organizations and other groups to provide opportunities for parents and community members to engage with our schools. Click here to engage.
Northwestern State is Louisiana’s affiliate university for PLTW, a non-profit program designed to introduce engineering principles to elementary, middle and high school students by integrating age-appropriate math, science and technology projects into a curriculum that encourages youngsters to pursue careers in science, technology, mathematics and engineering (STEM). Click here to engage.
Jump Start is Louisiana’s innovative career and technical education (CTE) program. Jump Start prepares students to lead productive adult lives, capable of continuing their education after high school while earning certifications in high-wage career sectors. Click here to engage.
AMT is more than just sitting in the classroom. The college and the manufacturer work closely together to enhance student learning. In addition to gaining skill mastery in the education portion of the program, students learn about the culture of manufacturing, through workshops such as safety culture, visual workplace organization, lean manufacturing, problem solving, and machine reliability. Click here to engage.
We believe that everyone in our community should be involved in education. Whether you are a parent, a retired teacher, or an industry professional, there are ways for you to plug in and give back to our schools and children. Here you will find a list of resources that will help you find the support you need.
The Chamber is proud to roll out the next phase of its Education Committee: the A+ Coalition. Now is the time to discuss the importance of education to our business community and the growth of Natchitoches Parish. Click on the link to learn about the ways in which our Natchitoches Parish community at large can stay informed, get involved, and be a part of the movement that will help advance education in Natchitoches.
The Education Fund is a 501c3 provides assistance to the area's educational needs in PreK12, Technical College and University levels. Donations made to the Education Fund are tax deductible. Click here to get involved.
Parent Teacher Organizations work hard to assist the schools and students in many functions. Click here to get involved.
The first five years of life are critical to a child's development. A child who attends a high quality early learning center will develop better language and math skills, be prepared for school success, get along well with others, and exhibit fewer behavior problems. Click here to get involved.
The Chamber has created a list of contact information for various organizations and groups that collaborate to provide students with more opportunities. Click here to get involved.
Reading regularly with preschool-age children gives them the biggest boost toward a successful education they will ever get. Dolly Parton's Imagination Library will send every child that registers a carefully selected book each month, every year until their 5th birthday. All Natchitoches Parish residents are eligible for this program! Click here to get involved.
In addition to the wealth of information that the Natchitoches Parish Library provides, they offer several programs for students and others. Click here to get involved.
Education Newsletter Archive
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Thank you for visiting our Education webpage! This is an informational landing page, designed to put all the education resources for the community on one page. As you can imagine, this is a gargantuan task. If you see an error, or if you know there is a resource missing from our page, please contact us at Membership@NatchitochesChamber.com.
The Chamber Education Steering Committee
Progress is in Our Hands