Audubon Charter School’s Uptown Upper Campus serving grades four through eight will move into the Live Oak facility for the 2022-23 school year, Audubon Schools CEO Steve Corbett announced.
The recently renovated facility at 3128 Constance St. offers more than 84,000 square feet, a theater and auditorium for Audubon’s flourishing arts curriculum, as well as colorful murals along the hallway. Audubon plans to make it the Upper Campus’ permanent home.
The Irish Channel campus now houses FirstLine Live Oak Charter School, which announced in January that it is closing at the end of the school year because of declining enrollment. The pre-K through eighth-grade school took over the Constance Street building from ReNew Schools in 2018.
Audubon Schools operates two schools: Audubon Charter School Uptown and Audubon Charter School Gentilly. Audubon Uptown’s Lower Campus, serving pre-kindergarten through third grade, will remain at its current location at 428 Broadway, as will Audubon Gentilly, serving grades pre-K through fifth grade at 4720 Painters St. in Gentilly.
According to Corbett, the Live Oak building will be a significant upgrade from Audubon Charter School’s current Upper Campus location in the former McDonogh 7 School building at 1111 Milan St. in the Touro-Bouligny neighborhood.
“We believe this building will be an excellent fit for our upper campus,” Corbett said.
McDonogh 7 was part of a controversial 2019 land swap. HANO turned over eight acres of land on the former B.W. Cooper development to the Orleans Parish School Board in exchange for three OPSB properties — including the former McDonogh 7 building on Milan.
The swap gave Booker Washington High School space for a football field and gave HANO space for affordable housing. The three-story school building will be turned into 27 affordable housing units for seniors, while the rest of the site will hold six family duplexes.
Audubon had been looking for a larger building before the land swap occurred, officials said.
“We are thrilled after many years to have a permanent home for our middle school students and staff,” said Audubon Uptown Upper Campus Principal Adrienne Collopy. “We finally have the space needed for our students and our programming to grow and thrive. We look forward to making this beautiful campus our new home.”
NOLA-PS Superintendent Henderson Lewis Jr. announced his decision yesterday to re-site three charter management organizations as a first step in what will be a multi-year project of district optimization.
“These recommendations were made after careful review and evaluation of all applications to determine the optimal qualified operator for each facility,” Lewis said. “I believe these schools will maximize the use of the campuses and continue to fulfill the district’s mission of providing a high-quality education for the students it serves.”