Apr 162019

A Lycee Francais banner hangs from the roof at the former Priestley campus in 2015, after Lycee purchased the building.  (Robert Morris, UptownMessenger.com)

The public French immersion school Lycée Français de la Nouvelle-Orléans has received a lead gift of $100,000 from Jim and Catherine MacPhaille. These funds are a donation to the recently launched Room to Grow campaign, a campaign to raise funds for the renovation of the Priestley building, which will house Lycée’s high school program.

Lycée Français is on track to become the first tuition-free pre-K through 12th grade public French curriculum program in the United States by 2024. As the school adds a grade per year, the need for additional space grows.

In 2015, Lycée Français purchased the historic Alfred C. Priestley Junior High School building at 1619 Leonidas St. Lycée hopes to breathe new life into the property, which has been shuttered since 1993. A major renovation and an addition are planned for the site.

Jim and Catherine MacPhaille, honorary chairs of the fundraising campaign to finance the renovation Priestley, have led through their gift, the largest in Lycée Français’ history.

“We have been parents and supporters of Lycée Français since the beginning and are excited to have the opportunity to invest in its future,” said Jim MacPhaille. “Lycée is on an unparalleled trajectory of success and we are inspired by the vision for the school and what having a truly international education will mean for its students and the New Orleans community.”

For more information, see www.lfno.org/rtg.

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