Let's Change the Future For Louisiana By Rebuilding LSU
Let's change the complete future for Louisiana right now by rebuilding LSU and then taking it to the top.
As many in our Louisiana family faced challenges from tropical weather in recent days one headline sadly drew our attention, because Louisiana loves LSU. The US News once again lowered LSU's national ranking to 179, which makes a total fall of 79 spots under the previous President.
Let's talk some good news. No state has the potential to unite behind a Flagship like Louisiana does. No state has more statewide love for their Flagship. Our new LSU President, in great contrast to the last one, has years of experience in building one of the leading academic and research universities in the world which is currently 14th in that same US News ranking. President Tate has been successful in the past at developing the private and corporate partnerships needed to create a first tier academic and research institution.
We are encouraged by the plainly stated principles and vision new LSU President William Tate has outlined:
SEEK TRUTH, EXHIBIT EMPATHY, DEMONSTRATE CARE
Imagine a university where scholarship is the primary objective. Scholarship reigns. The immediate focus is on positioning LSU to be a place where scholarship grows and flourishes in a fashion consistent with the pressing needs of society.
Think more outstanding research, teaching, and learning. Find more resources to fund student's scholarships. Embrace growing the scholar-athlete mindset. SCHOLARSHIP FIRST!
Without delay, we must tangibly support President Tate and the many talented and dedicated LSU team members and students. Changes are needed to unleash the great potential of LSU in its full Flagship role. We need to give the many exceptional LSU team members that have suffered so long some credit for their efforts. The financial support LSU receives for it's academic and research mission is actually well below it's ranking and is in the mid 200's! That is unacceptable.
To be honest, we don't need to completely reinvent the wheel to send LSU to the top, because so much of the wildly successful Flagship Coalition plan that was responsible for what is now described as The Golden Age at LSU can be drawn upon and repeated. Our Put Louisiana First leadership was a part of that Flagship Coalition. It is a different world, and new strategies are required, but we must certainly learn and draw from all that worked then. A primary responsibility of a Flagship university is to be a generator of competitive research and economic and intellectual development for a state. Just like in athletics, LSU is not in existence to compete and compare with other Louisiana institutions. LSU must win in research, STEM based and other economic development, and intellectual development against other state Flagships.
We are encouraged that President Tate has been recognized nationally as an Inspiring Leader in STEM. Among many opportunities, we believe there are two areas that offer great immediate opportunity for nationwide public and private funding support for LSU faculty, scholarships, and research and development that will lead directly to Louisiana jobs across the state: new energy technology initiatives underway by the world's leading energy companies who already have a stake here in Louisiana , and coastal management and mitigation. Some of the brightest people in these areas were raised and trained in Louisiana, but are now active in academics and business outside of Louisiana. They need to be brought home now.
Can money be raised in this environment? Yes! If we are willing to do the hard work. Here is the proof: In a campaign concluded in the middle of pandemic burdened 2020, Indiana University endowed more than 5,800 undergraduate scholarships and graduate fellowships -- a 45.4 percent increase over the total created during the university's entire 190-year history before the campaign. The campaign has also raised funds to endow 235 professorial positions -- a 51.5 percent increase over the total from the previous 190 years.
We have sorely lacked a President interested in engaging alumni and others for such support and are encouraged by the warm outreach President Tate has made so far in great contrast. The governor and legislature must make a real financial commitment to LSU in the next session. There must be an immediate increase in funding in the next session to send a powerful message that a new era for LSU is ahead.
President Tate shows great potential to be an ambassador for LSU and restore the connection between LSU and Louisiana and build a stronger one than LSU has ever had. The job of a Flagship university president is much different that what it used to be. LSU must be a leader in today's market at educating traditional and nontraditional students in a way that benefits them long term and benefits Louisiana's future. LSU must be a leader in delivering medical care and research. LSU must be a national leader in real economic development activity and overall Flagship research.
We look forward to engaging in specifics on your behalf to move LSU ahead to a prosperous future for this great institution. LSU belongs to you, the the people of Louisiana. We are here to advocate for you. Together we can bring a new level of support and success at LSU along with continued accountability for all who we entrust LSU's stewardship to.
Richard Lipsey and Terrell Brown
Put Louisiana First Founders
"John Bel and I have a great relationship, although he is a Democrat. He is doing a great job." - President Trump
By removing politics from COVID policy John Bel Edwards has led an effective effort to prevent Louisiana citizens from enduring the crisis now underway in Texas and Florida.
Must The Mike The Tiger Mascot Go?
“Several generations of LSU alumni have loved our mascot and never given a second thought as to where the name originally came from.” What are your thoughts?
Click the link below for the recent article from The Baton Rouge Advocate.
IT'S TIME FOR CONNIE BERNARD TO RESIGN FROM EBR SCHOOL BOARD
It is time for Connie Bernard to resign from the East Baton Rouge School Board. With a new EBR Superintendent on the way and a prolonged difficult period for the students of East Baton Rouge dealing with COVID-19, this should be a time of focus on the future for all of EBR's school leadership. Unfortunately, this isn't possible with Mrs. Bernard hanging around. The board needs to move on to safely reopening schools and welcoming a new EBR Superintendent. We encourage Mrs. Bernard to allow it to do so. School board members should pass a resolution calling for her resignation if it has to come to that. Hopefully, it won't.
This is not about "cancel culture". Ms. Bernard needs to go not because of her positions on any issues, but because her personal conduct has gotten in the way of tackling real issues. She chose to work for us on the EBR School Board, and it is unacceptable and disrespectful to taxpayers to ignore the work at hand and extensively shop online with her government issued device at a board meeting. It is a further distraction that she lied about this when confronted only to be exposed by records from her government device. Two years ago she was caught on video allegedly trespassing and assaulting a teenage boy. The video is an embarrassment and another distraction from EBR School Board business. She has apologized and the case is still pending. The truth is that Connie acts without thinking, a disappointing and dangerous trait for someone in charge of our children's education. We care about education and want to see our school board members focused on the kids and making our schools better.
We do not doubt that Ms. Bernard sought the position to serve. The job certainly does not offer lucrative pay. By initiating an orderly resignation process, Ms. Bernard can ensure that the interests of the constituents of District 8 are effectively represented. To be fair, Ms. Bernard should be replaced with a new School Board member who represents the same political party and educational philosophy as she represents. That way, it's clear this isn't about politics, but about getting down to business for the good of the kids and the school system.
Put Louisiana First
No governor has worked more effectively together with President Donald Trump than John Bel Edwards. That may surprise some. However, since the President has promised to "Put America First" and the governor has selected a "Put Louisiana First" theme for his administration we should expect nothing less.
Susan and I had the great privilege of supporting Joe in person as he received the Heisman. I've seen a lot of great Tigers! I'm so enthralled by last night that I can't even think about Joe's place in history. Whatever your thoughts are let's enjoy Joe and all our great Tigers. Click the link for some thoughts from a team member. - Richard Lipsey
The I-10 bridge crossings in Baton Rouge and Lake Charles burden citizens from Slidell to the our border with Texas. Lives will be lost due to the inadequate capacity should a Katrina style evacuation occur again. Vital transportation to and from the energy corridor is at risk. It's a threat to the whole US economy and national security. All of us who travel through Baton Rouge and Lake Charles on or near I-10 have been affected numerous times by unsafe conditions and unthinkable delays. It is not a local issue. It is an issue for the entire I-10 corridor. Click the link to help us address this critical issue
August 4, 2019
Today the Baton Rouge Advocate released another investigative piece on the LaHIT scheme. It is linked below. Folks are asking me today what I have to say. We launched our call for a change in leadership at our beloved school in September 2018. Our call was always grounded in restoring the rule of law and constitutional compliance that has been actively undermined by King Alexander, the Jindal administration, and their cronies and must be restored with new leadership and processes. Click the link for details.
Legislative Auditor Daryl Purpera has a busy office, filing 66 reports in just the past three weeks. Yesterday he announced that he had reopened the audit process in regard to one of them. Click the link to read the questions that now must be answered.
The latest of the numerous King Alexander caused scandals at LSU hit the news today in the form of a report from the Legislative Auditor. Just the facts presented in the audit are certainly disturbing enough to immediately bring an end to the tenure of King Alexander and Dan Layzell at LSU. Unfortunately our independent investigation reveals much more, much worse, and more telling information than the audit. Click the link for the disturbing facts.
Scott Woodward Is A Home Run For LSU, But Joe Alleva Was Not The Problem
As we have pointed out for months the numerous reasons we need new leadership at LSU our emphasis was not athletics. The final events leading to the recent change in the position of Athletic Director involved the 2019 Basketball Tigers, but these events were only a final addition to mismanagement and improper messaging in regard to athletic affairs.
In this matter and in every case of mismanagement we have witnessed at LSU the buck stops with King Alexander. Based on Alleva's history with Duke Lacrosse and Alexander's reckless and embarrassing extended leaked firing and third quarter "unfiring" of Les Miles, no prudent person would have agreed to a rushed meeting with King Alexander and Alleva. Our student athletes paid the price.
We commend the LSU Board of Supervisors and James Williams for one of the most professional transitions ever seen in Louisiana public life. We can't say enough about the flawless execution. This process was in great contrast to Alexander's bungled handling of similar matters. In the hire of Scott Woodward, Board Chair James Williams and the LSU Board of Supervisors hit a home run.
We now must complete the changes needed to unleash the great potential of LSU in its full Flagship role. Winning at the highest level athletically and doing it the right way is important, but the other activities of LSU are more critical to our future. The primary responsibility of a Flagship university is to be a generator of competitive research and economic and intellectual development for a state. Just like in athletics, LSU is not in existence to compete and compare with other Louisiana institutions. LSU must win in research, STEM based and other economic development, and intellectual development against other state Flagships.
Since our original engagement for new leadership at LSU began in September we have demanded the best for LSU and have seen resistance from those who profit from the status quo. King Alexander's announcement of an Alexander and Alleva "donor relations" team following the Alleva reassignment demonstrates just how tone deaf Alexander is to the groundswell for a change in the Office of President at LSU. Except for those who personally benefit from the current leadership, the support for timely change in the Office of President is now nearly universal. It's clearly time for the same coalition that got new leadership done for LSU Athletics to quickly address the real source of the actions that made that change necessary and have resulted in the parade of scandals at LSU. The hiring of Scott Woodward has brought instant credibility to LSU Athletic Administration. Professional and timely action to complete the needed change in LSU leadership that we have called for can unleash a new golden age for all of LSU. Just as in the recent changes in LSU Athletics, judicious and professional action is in order. However, it is clear that timely action to change leadership and bring the best to LSU will be required to end the embarrassing headlines and replace them with headlines of achievement.
We thank you for all the kind words recently received and share your excitement in recent events. We look forward in engaging specifics on your behalf to Put LSU First and move forward to a prosperous future for this great institution.
As the first day of the legislative session began on Monday 4/8/2019 the Senate President made a powerful call to Put Louisiana First. But this call came in a speech at the Old State Capital by a 14 year old at the Youth Legislature.
We have received lots of feedback on our recent post about the Industrial Tax Exemption Program.
And thanks to our post both sides came to complete agreement! Click the link to find out how Baton Rouge can win together.
While our lawmakers continue to show up to a microphone or with a press release to grab a headline, we continue to be mired in the same old destructive habits. The recent drama of the rejection of an Industrial Tax Exemption request in Baton Rouge by the Exxon Mobil refinery reveals so much about what holds us back. Let's be clear. When John Bel Edwards granted local governing bodies control of ITEP, he placed us in the same position of Texas, the model many say we should follow economically.
In Texas ITEP is and has always been controlled by local government. Click the link for more.
Click the link for more...
You have heard about the Washington Swamp. The stuff that goes on in the Louisiana Capitol Swamp isn't even tried in Washington. Click the link for details.
As We Honor Martin Luther King Jr. We Thank Todd Graves For An Opportunity To Consider True Leadership
"It’s important that the next generation really understands how the contributions of Martin Luther King, Jr. changed the world. Many of us did not get a chance to hear MLK during his lifetime, so I am hoping they will be able to appreciate him and his work through this tribute to honor his life.” Todd Graves Raising Cane's Founder and CEO
As we honor the legacy of Martin Luther King Jr. this Monday we must consider the power of true leadership and what it can mean for our community and America. As we face the challenges of today we must remember the challenges of Dr. King's day were no less challenging. We have not reached his mountain top where all Americans would be judged only by the content of their character, but his leadership led us through challenging days to better ones. If we are to move forward today we must find and support leaders that will Put Louisiana First and Put America First. That's why I'm thanking LSU Grad, Raising Canes CEO Todd Graves for personally making an important exhibit available first in Louisiana that all America needs to see. Click Link For Details
Put Louisiana First
"In a first look at college freshmen admitted without meeting minimum standards, the Board of Regents found Monday that students enrolled by “exception” had lower grades, were more likely to leave early and didn’t graduate at the same rate as those who met the criteria." - Baton Rouge Advocate Click link to read more.
Bobby Jindal ally Alan Seabaugh has withdrawn from his attempt to be nominated by President Donald Trump for a Federal Judgeship in Louisiana.
This is not the first time the Trump administration has rejected a recommendation from Louisiana for their ties to organizations working against President Trump. The first recommendation for US Attorney in New Orleans was rejected because the recommendation was for a candidate that was a lifelong Democrat until days before seeking that job.
Seabaugh is the leading spokesman for The Koch brothers PRO OPEN BORDERS, PRO AMNESTY Americans For Prosperity group in the Louisiana legislature. He is a self described "great friend" of its state director John Kay. Although the Louisiana Chapter of Americans For Prosperity tries to hide the group's agenda, the group has opposed President Trump and supports open borders. Their agenda has been exposed in conservative media. Seabaugh's ties to the group were brought to the attention of the Trump Administration in recent days.
We can only take Seabaugh at his word on what his actions would be as speaker. Last year while drawing a check from hardworking Louisiana taxpayers on the LA House floor, Seabaugh said he was "there to run out the clock."
That's not the attitude the Trump Administration needed in a judge. We also don't need this Jindal ally as Speaker of the House.
For more on Americans For Prosperity Open Borders Agenda click this link: Seabaugh's AFP Supports Open Borders
GUEST COLUMNIST: STEVE CARTER
As a state it's time we make investments that will pay the biggest immediate and long term benefits. The Child Care Assistance Program in Louisiana is a tool that creates taxpayers and develops prosperous communities. Click the link to find out how.
Despite the attacks of the special interests we have seen some real progress in Louisiana in 2018. It's because We The People of Louisiana let our voices be heard. We demanded that our leaders Put Louisiana First and do the right thing for us regardless of party or who proposes an idea. It's just a beginning, but we can demand government and leadership that will Put Louisiana First. Click the link to win for Louisiana in 2019
10 GREAT TIPS FROM THE LIPSEYS ON THEIR 54TH ANNIVERSARY
2 MINUTE READ
Politics is often NOT awesome. Real life is awesome. That's why we are sharing 10 great tips from our boss Richard Lipsey and his wife Susan. Today they celebrate their 54th Anniversary. Congratulations Richard and Susan!! Special thanks to rock stars Joe and Byrdie for making tip 7 a reality.
BILL AND LAURA CASSIDY
...and be thankful you can. 80 percent of prisoners studied in the Huntsville State Prison in TX can't. 48 percent of that group are dyslexic. That's why what my friend Senator Bill Cassidy and his wife Laura just got done in the First Steps justice reform bill is so wonderful. It is just a start. We need to screen and treat kids early to end the tragedies like the one related by this American. He was not diagnosed with dyslexia until he was 23.
"I'll never forget when I had to read in sixth grade and the teacher simply embarrassed me as I floundered. I knew that day I was going to be a dope dealer."
The solutions will benefit us all. Click the link for more...
If you own a small business in Louisiana 30 minutes could bring long term prosperity to your operation. If you own property in Louisiana 30 minutes can increase your long term property value and reduce your tax burden. If you have children or grandchildren in Louisiana 30 minutes can determine whether they will stay or be forced to move for economic opportunity. Click the link to find out how.
Put Louisiana First Family: Please Read The Following Piece By New Orleans Native John Mathis And Sign Our Petition.
Put Louisiana First
Photo: Kathleen Blanco shares her vision for a rebuilt Superdome following the severe damage by Hurricane Katrina
Every time the Saints block a punt, fans who saw it are reminded of the great Steve Gleason block at the first Superdome game following Katrina. Nobody questions that rebuilding the Superdome was the right decision now. In 2006 Republicans and Democrats launched heavy criticism against Governor Blanco for making it a top priority. Click the link to get the story...
"George HW Bush is the modern role model for folks in politics. There are too few today, if any, like him. You can oppose without belittling your opponent. You can disagree without being disagreeable. You can serve with your only motive being doing what is right for the people you serve. Every public servant needs to know they can be like him and ask themselves if they have the courage to serve rather than be served. "
Congressman and Bush Deputy Chief of Staff, Henson Moore Click The Link For Complete Article...
East Baton Rouge Sheriff Sid Gautreaux estimates that 70 percent of people in Parish Prison have a diagnosed mental health disorder and a large number don't need to be in prison. This is something that touches all of us. Beyond the human concern, our families are at additional risk to violent offenders because our police are burdened with calls that are mental health issues, not law enforcement issues. Baton Rouge needs a mental health center now for our safety and the welfare of those we love.
Across our state businesses are specifically avoiding activity in Baton Rouge due to traffic delays. Consumers are avoiding our retail establishments. New businesses are locating elsewhere because they cannot afford the delays in transport of their goods and personnel. Most importantly, we are giving up our most precious asset, time with family, due to the worst commute for a city of our size found in America. Click link to read more...
As we enter Thanksgiving week we are thankful to people like you that daily make great things happen. Click link above to find out why...
Sheriff Jeff Wiley's integrity, leadership, and skillful administration has been a blessing to Ascension Parish, the entire Baton Rouge region, and all of Louisiana. He's announced his intention to step down this January and turn leadership over to the unquestionably qualified Bobby Webre. We owe Sheriff Wiley great thanks and recognition and hope he will serve as a model for the leaders we need in all areas of government to build a bright future for Louisiana.
Sheriff Wiley enrolled in the Marine Corps in 1970 and began his formal law enforcement training there. From that point on he's been about THE MISSION without distraction, and that has been critical. Jeff Wiley has been a rock of leadership through the storms and crises our area and state has faced. Click link for details...
We watched kids from Louisiana make plays in Tiger Stadium wearing Alabama uniforms last Saturday. It's something that didn't start with this coaching staff, and something they know they must do something to stop. We wish the football staff all success in doing it. However, there is another much more important battle for Louisiana families underway. Click the link to find out more...
My alma mater LSU is not the plaintiff currently, but the trial currently involving Harvard University's "Holistic Admissions" procedures reveals the future if Alexander is not stopped. It is guaranteed that LSU will suffer such a suit if King Alexander's admitted violation of Board of Regents minimum standards is allowed to stand. Read more...
"It could happen to your child or grandchild."-Kristian Garic WWL Radio
Andrew Robison can play football again and the LHSAA actions that robbed all but one regular season game from him were a disgrace. Andrew Robison has a great family and support system as has been made clear throughout the ordeal. That's why the case is a disgrace and not a tragedy. However, it reveals a history of tragedies that we as Louisianians must end. Read More...
We at Put Louisiana First want to commend our hometown Baton Rouge District Attorney Hillar Moore, and his colleagues Paul Connick of Jefferson, Keith Stutes of Lafayette, and James Stewart of Caddo for being the latest to support the Unanimous Jury Amendment. We have been encouraging all voters to say yes to the Unanimous Jury Amendment on November 6. We have been honored to support this bipartisan, pro-American, pro-Constitution effort. The Louisiana Republican Party and the Louisiana Democratic Party both endorse this amendment.
Here is what Lafourche Parish Sheriff Republican Craig Webre says:
"The Founding Fathers believed unanimous jury decision was essential to the protection of justice. I agree with them."
Click link to read more...
On October 16 the Judge in the Andrew Robison hearing appropriately denied everything the LHSAA asked for.
Put Louisiana First had suspended coverage of this disgraceful abuse of yet another student athlete to allow the parties helping Andrew to determine the best course of action for this outstanding young man. The family has chosen to pursue final arbitration hearing with the LHSAA, which could be heard as early as the week of October 22.
Click headline for full story.
PUT LOUISIANA FIRST LEADERSHIP SUMMIT IS IN DEVELOPMENT
Put Louisiana First is developing a nonpartisan summit for Louisiana state legislators to follow the upcoming election on November 6, 2018.
The initial plan is to meet with a small group of legislators equally representing both parties prior to establish priorities for discussion at the summit where cooperation without compromise of principles can bring vital reform.
Suggested priorities for the summit from Put Louisiana First to the initial planning group of legislators will include these items:
1) Immediately increase post secondary training and education participation by Louisiana high school graduates beginning with the class of 2019.
2) Freeze administrative spending in all departments.
3) Terminate all non performance based tax exemptions and rebates benefiting special interests.
4) Terminate all tax exemptions and rebates in existence for three years or more that have not demonstrated an average net fiscal benefit for the past three years.
5) Increase the amount of funding that can be held in the "Rainy Day Fund by 20% and the minimum automatic distribution of any surplus to the fund by 30% to avoid future fiscal crises.
6) Eliminate statutory dedications that produce inefficiency and inflexibility in state budgeting and contribute to fiscal pressure on education and health care.
7) Eliminate franchise tax and provide a moderate flat tax option for all businesses with under 20mm in revenue to reduce administrative and regulatory burden on small business, the major engine of economic growth.
8) Immediately prohibit any legislator from proposing or voting on legislation that provides a special benefit to any business they have an ownership interest in of 5% or more. This would apply to any legislation not applying to all Louisiana business entities.
9) Eliminate per diem or any financial compensation for any legislator for any additional special sessions for two years after any special session is called.
Put Louisiana First is a 501(c)4 community organization established by Louisiana businessman Richard Lipsey.
Click the link to take action.
"With the University’s holistic admissions policy, which relaxes previous admissions standards, there is a growing potential for the remedial classes to return to the campus that worked so hard to eliminate them."
REGENTS ANNOUNCES STATEWIDE AUDIT OF COLLEGE ADMISSIONS
Official Press Release of Louisiana Board of Regents Follows Below:
Meg Casper Sunstrom
Deputy Commissioner for Strategic Communication
Assistant Commissioner for Public Affairs
Louisiana Board of Regents
September 26, 2018
REGENTS ANNOUNCES STATEWIDE AUDIT OF COLLEGE ADMISSIONS
Louisiana approaching 20-year anniversary for minimum admissions standards
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
BATON ROUGE, La. - The Louisiana Board of Regents today announced an audit of all four-year universities aimed at measuring compliance with the state's minimum admissions standards.
In 2005, Regents established minimum admissions standards to focus on enrolling students at institutions where they could be most likely to achieve academic success. The audit program will begin as soon as campus data is available for this fall semester and will include a review of admissions exceptions.
"Given the heightened interest in admissions standards and the role of the Board of Regents in enforcing standards and expectations, now is clearly the time to take a deep dive into our institutions' compliance," said Regents Chairman Robert W. Levy. "Additionally, this audit will drive our discussions moving forward in terms of where we've been and where we are going in terms of access and success for students who choose to go to college," Levy emphasized.
"As we set a new vision for higher education and enhance our focus on talent development, it is appropriate for us to analyze the Regents admission standards and its impact on student completion." said Commissioner of Higher Education Kim Hunter Reed." This is step one in an important process of accountability and policy review." Reed said.
In the 2001 Master Plan, the Board of Regents established minimum admission standards for Louisiana's public four-year institutions giving the campuses, and high school students, four years to prepare to meet the changes. The new standards took effect in 2005. The Regents' admissions requirements include completion of a college prep core curriculum plus a certain GPA OR a certain ACT score. The GPA or ACT cut scores were graduated (by institution and type) with LSU (as the flagship) having the highest minimum standard. In addition, the minimum admission standards restricted admission of students requiring remedial education to statewide and regional college campuses (i.e., all but LSU) based on ACT English and Math subscores.
Staff anticipates the audit process to begin in January with a report to the Board for their action in the spring.
"The more we have removed subjectivity and politics from LSU admissions, the more we have been successful for the people of LSU." -Richard Lipsey, Founder of Put Louisiana First
LSU President King Alexander actually supports our arguments against his actions in his guest column in the 9/6/2018 Advocate. The unilateral action he has taken to disrupt the admissions process for not only LSU, but schools across our great state is unwise, dangerous, and will produce chaos at other colleges across Louisiana who had not been informed of his plan.
In his column, he commends the fact that LSU just enrolled its largest and most diverse freshman class in history with a mean ACT score of 26. These outstanding numbers have been achieved under the wise policies established by the Board of Regents and LSU Board of Supervisors before Alexander arrived and that he now seeks to change.
After years of substandard performance, undue political influence, and inappropriate influence based on money and power the sound practices established by the Board of Regents and Board of Supervisors have paid great dividends.
Alexander wants to claim credit for the great success of the standards established long before he arrived, and then unilaterally change them. He wants to change what has created this success just as LSU and all our institutions around the state are finally achieving some measure of economic stability. He wants to disrupt the budgets and business models of all our other great universities around the state just as they are stabilized.
He did not consult with those responsible for those other schools as anyone who wants to put Louisiana first would. Alexander claims that his new policy is sound because it mirrors policies at Harvard University that has a 5 percent acceptance rate of applicants, and the University of Texas that has a 39 percent acceptance rate. These schools turn down thousands of high-achieving students annually.
This is an absurd comparison to be made when LSU has a 76 percent acceptance rate and a practice of admitting all applicants qualified by standards that will now be subjective.
Very often those within a bureaucracy lose sight of the people of Louisiana’s purpose for the institution they are employed at. The Regents and Supervisors initiated the flagship concept for LSU before Alexander was here. They did this on behalf of the people of Louisiana who have since been served by initiating objective standards that are not subject to political influence, who can write a big check, or cronyism.
In short, the more we have removed subjectivity and politics from LSU admissions, the more we have been successful for the people of LSU. Changing this certainly may be very good for Alexander and certain bureaucrats, as it will allow them more personal power from subjective control of admissions. It may be good for the child of a wealthy donor or influential politician. It will not be good for the vast majority of hardworking students and parents who have been competing and succeeding on a fair playing field with defined rules of the game. They now will be subjected to having their educational future subject to arbitrary decisions of an admissions bureaucracy that can be influenced by politics and cronyism.
Founder, Put Louisiana First
I am making an immediate call for all of us to see that the message "You must move on with your education after high school to move forward to your best future" is echoed in every Louisiana high school this year.
There is an immediate issue in our state that more than anything will affect your property value, Louisiana tax revenue, level of spending on governmental assistance, the impact of crime in your life, and the prosperity of small and large businesses of all types in Louisiana. All these things will be determined more than anything by the number of Louisiana high school graduates that pursue postsecondary education and training after high school.
We must increase postsecondary education participation in Louisiana beginning with the class of 2019.
60 percent of Louisiana high school graduates are not pursuing postsecondary education and training after high school. In 2020, 66 percent of new jobs created in the economy will require training beyond high school. This means 60 percent of our Louisiana young adults are entering an economy where they are not qualified for 2 out of 3 of the opportunities available. While a long term approach to change this is required, we must use the tools already in place to immediately reverse this trend beginning with the class of 2019. It is the responsibility of every high school, school board, community, and our political leaders to see that every member of the class of 2019 has a scheduled start date for some form of postsecondary education and training before they graduate this year.
The median yearly income of someone with a high school diploma alone is $28,400, compared to $44,800 with a two-year (Associate’s) degree and $56,500 with a four-year (Bachelor’s) degree. Currently, the median income for someone with two years of specialized technical training is even higher $63,300. Clearly postsecondary education and training is a life changer for everyone regardless of intended career path. And it will change all our lives, wherever we live in Louisiana. Nothing will increase tax revenues to repair our aging infrastructure, reduce governmental assistance spending, and create customers for Louisiana businesses than a high earning workforce resulting from preparation to fill the jobs in the current and next economy.
TOPS is available for traditional higher education, but any student choosing a different route to success must be empowered to take advantage of existing TOPS funding for two year and other technical programs. Often all it takes is one person willing to take an action on behalf of a student to encourage them to take advantage of significant programs and funding sources for post secondary education and training directly related to a future of exciting employment for them, regardless of their interests.
I am making an immediate call for all of us to see that the message "You must move on with your education after high school to move forward to your best future" is echoed in every Louisiana high school this year. We must make sure that every member of the class of 2019 in Louisiana high schools is aware of the huge lifetime impact of the choice to pursue post secondary education, is provided information on the numerous resources to get it done, and has a scheduled start date for post secondary education before they graduate this year.
Put Louisiana First
LSU President King Alexander is lowering the minimum ACT requirement at LSU.
It took years of dedicated effort to raise LSU's average ACT score for admitted freshmen from below 20 to 27. This is an incredible increase. The addition of the Honors College program solidified the progress of LSU to true Flagship University Status. For many years high performing students left for other state Flagship Universities never to return. Now students with the skills to build a bright future for Louisiana are remaining in state to contribute.
In the 1990's the Louisiana Board of Regents established a system that has been incredibly successful at creating true Flagship status for LSU. All other higher education institutions were placed into one tier of 10 regional schools or another tier of three statewide schools. Each tier has differing ACT score and GPA requirements. The two-year community colleges are open enrollment.
By removing objective standards at LSU, King Alexander opens the door for politics and money to influence admissions decisions. Donors and persons of influence can now bring inappropriate influence to the admissions process.
Only the Louisiana Board of Regents is authorized in the Louisiana Constitution to change minimum standards. The standards they adopted in the 1990's have produced excellent results. King Alexander's spokesman Jason Droddy says Alexander can in his words "thread through" requirements to end the minimum ACT standard without Regents approval.
Put Louisiana First asks you to call LSU President King Alexander at 225 578 2111 and the Board of Regents at 225 342 4253 and tell them to stop the plan to lower LSU standards immediately.
Follow us now on Facebook at http://facebook.com/putlouisianafirst/
Governor John Bel Edwards attended an infrastructure meeting at the White House after being invited by President Trump. The Trump Administration has provided a record $80 million dollar windfall to Louisiana following this year's infrastructure meeting with John Bel Edwards at the White House.
Congressman Graves And Governor John Bel Edwards Put Louisiana First To Secure Billions In Flood Control
"All told Louisiana will receive billions to right the wrongs and improve and modernize drainage. It will be breathtaking to behold once it's under way, when you have the combination of all of these dollars."- Graves Spokesman
After years of neglect a cooperative effort by Graves and Edwards has resulted in the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development announcing $1.2 billion for the state to provide money for flood mitigation projects that are aimed at better management of entire watersheds, like the Amite River basin. The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers has also announced an additional $1.4 billion in projects
FEMA will also provide $220 million in hazard mitigation dollars to Louisiana.
The money will be administered by the state and a "watershed council" is now developing a process to review projects and allocate the money. Graves and Edwards have long made the point that the state completes these projects faster and at a fraction of the cost of the US Army Corps of Engineers. In a continued effort of cooperation Congressman Graves and Governor Edwards released a joint statement on the funding.
President Donald Trump congratulated John Bel Edwards on his innovative Criminal Justice reforms.
The White House says John Bel Edwards has implemented changes similar to those backed by Trump.
The mostly Republican group included Matt Bevin of Kentucky, Nathan Deal of Georgia, Phil Bryant of Mississippi, Doug Burgum of North Dakota, and John Bel Edwards. Also attending were Republican attorneys general Pam Bondi of Florida and Ken Paxton of Texas.
Following the meeting, Governor John Bel Edwards invited President Trump to tour the Angola Penitentiary to see reforms underway.
"Republicans, Democrats, and independents voted to put our fiscal cliff in the rearview mirror," said Gov. John Bel Edwards during a press conference Sunday evening June 24.
Lawmakers also voted on a state spending plan for the fiscal year beginning July 1. The approved budget plan funds hospitals, public universities, the TOPS college scholarship, nursing homes, medical residents' salaries, mental health services, substance abuse services, sheriffs and the Louisiana National Guard, which had all been on the chopping block earlier this year.
Since the beginning of the Jindal administration, the Louisiana Legislature had struggled to find a long-term tax solution to shore up state spending.