GNO Collaborative Teachers

Civil Rights Pioneer Leona Tate to Visit Young Audiences Charter School


Civil Rights Pioneer Leona Tate to Visit Young Audiences Charter School  Activist helped to desegregate the Deep South when she was six years old
WHAT: In honor of Black History Month, Leona Tate will speak to Middle Schoolers at Young Audiences Charter School. At six-years-old, Tate helped to desegregate the South when she walked into the all-white McDonogh 19 Elementary School in November 1960 surrounded by Federal Marshals.
WHEN: Monday, February 25, 2019, 9:15am
WHERE: Young Audiences Charter School 1407 Virgil St Gretna, LA 70053  WHY: On November 14, 1960, six years after separate black and white schools were ruled unconstitutional in Brown vs Board of Education,four courageous African American 6yr. old girls integrated New Orleans Public Schools. The McDonogh Three – Leona Tate, Gail Etienne and Tessie Prevost were the first to be escorted by U.S. Marshals when they arrived at an all-white segregated school called McDonogh No. 19. On the same fateful morning, another six-year-old girl named Ruby Bridges integrated a second New Orleans public school called William Frantz Elementary.
 In 2009, Tate created the Leona Tate Foundation for Change (LTFC) to continue educating the public, in particular young people, on the lessons of Civil Rights and minorities’ struggle for equality. 

Leona Tate is frequently invited to schools and universities to share her story. She seeks to inspire young people by acquainting them with the courage of ordinary people in the struggle for equality. LTFC devotes her time in educating new generations and encouraging their participation in ongoing efforts to build a more just society.    

The lead project of the foundation is to preserve and re-purpose the McDonogh #19 school as a memorial museum and multi-purpose center in New Orleans, with significant goals:

  • Preserve the building as a memorial site to the courage of three African American girls and their families in the fight for equal rights and equal education.
  • Create a permanent exhibition that will attract, engage, and educate local, national and international visitors in the history of the civil rights struggle for equal education in New Orleans.
  • Develop educational programs that address the needs of the community.
  • Stimulate the depressed economy of the Lower Ninth Ward and serve as a strong community anchor to enhance economic vitality.
    About Young Audiences Charter School              Young Audiences Charter School (YACS) at Kate Middleton is an open enrollment, arts-integrated charter school serving 950 Jefferson Parish creative learners in kindergarten through 8th grades. Founded in 2013 by Young Audiences of Louisiana, YACS’s mission is to educate the whole child through arts integration and equip creative learners to become leaders in their community. With a vision of fostering self-aware thinkers, creators, and problem solvers, YACS will expand to pre-K through high school in 2019.  Learn more at
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