About KIPP New Orleans Schools

Mission and Vision

KIPP McDonogh 15 aims to develop our scholars’ academic skills, character, and proud self-identities to help them achieve their goals, ignite a lifelong love of learning, and inspire them to be leaders that make the world a better place.


KIPP New Orleans Schools began in 2005 as a collection of New Orleans residents – parents, teachers and community leaders – dedicated to providing high quality educational options in New Orleans. The founding group was drawn together by a shared commitment to education and a belief that a rigorous education will provide students a path to a life full of choices.

KIPP New Orleans’s first school, KIPP Phillips Preparatory, opened its doors in July 2005 to a class of 120 eighth-grade students in the former E.H. Phillips Middle School building, near the St. Bernard housing projects. After three weeks of summer school and two weeks of regular classes, the school was brought to an abrupt end by Hurricane Katrina.

The week after the hurricane, KIPP students who evacuated to Houston shelters called their teachers’ cell phones to ask for help enrolling in school in Houston. KIPP staff members traveled to Houston and spent several days walking through shelters at the Astrodome, Reliant Center, and George R. Brown Convention Center to search for their students. They quickly saw the need for education options for New Orleans children who had evacuated to Houston.

KIPP New Orleans staff members worked closely with KIPP Houston Schools to open a new school specifically for New Orleans residents who evacuated to Houston. That school was named New Orleans West (NOW) College Prep. The school opened on October 3rd, 2005 and served over 450 students in grades Kindergarten through 8th. In 2006, KIPP families and staff returned to New Orleans to open KIPP Believe College Prep and KIPP McDonogh 15. Eleven years later, KIPP New Orleans Schools enrolls more than 4,600 students in grades Kindergarten through 12th at eleven schools across the city.

KIPP New Orleans Schools (KNOS) is a Louisiana not-for-profit organization governed by a local board of directors. As part of the national Knowledge Is Power Program (KIPP) network of schools, KNOS is dedicated to empowering all students with the knowledge and skills they need to succeed in college and in life.

For more information about KIPP New Orleans Schools, visit www.kippneworleans.org, like us on Facebook at www.facebook.com/KIPPNewOrleans or follow us on Twitter at @KIPPNO.