The Louisiana Association of Public Charter Schools’ seventh annual conference titled “7th Inning Stretch: Charters. Choice. Change” recognized leaders in the state’s growing charter movement.

The mission of LAPCS is to support, promote, and advocate for the Louisiana charter school movement, increasing student access to high quality public schools statewide. The conference brought together educators in Louisiana’s charter schools to recognize their successes and challenge them to share best practices, according to LAPCS Director Caroline Roemer Shirley.

“The LAPCS recognized some of the outstanding leaders in public education who are meeting the challenge to improve education,” Shirley said.

The 2014 LAPCS Excellence in Education Award went to the Louisiana Senate Education Committee represented by Sen. Mike Walsworth; the School Excellence Award, Single Site went to D’Arbonne Woods Charter, Farmerville.

The School Excellence Award went to Choice Foundation which operates Lafayette Academy, McDonogh 42 Elementary and Esperanza Charter, of New Orleans.

The Excellence in Governance Award went to Jean-Paul Hymel, board chairman, Crescent City Schools of New Orleans, which operates Paul Habans Charter, Harriet Tubman and Akili Academy.

The Charter School Excellence Awards were sponsored by Schulman, Lopez, and Hoffer, LLP and the Excellence in Governance Award was sponsored by 4th Sector Solutions.

The event featured a keynote luncheon with Tim King, the president and CEO of Urban Prep Academies; and a breakfast panel with Superintendent John White, of the state Department of Education; Curt Eysink, with the LA Workforce Commission; Michael Hecht, of Greater New Orleans Inc.; and Chief Judge Ulysses Gene Thibodeaux, Third Circuit Court of Appeals; as well as over 20 breakout sessions.

For information, visit lacharterschools.org.