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For Immediate Release
Office of the First Lady
April 19, 2007

Mrs. Bush Tours Holy Cross School in New Orleans
Holy Cross School
New Orleans, Louisiana

10:24 A.M. CDT

MRS. BUSH: We're getting ready to, as you know, to announce all the schools that this is the third round of grants from the Gulf Coast School Library Recovery Initiative. And this school, Holy Cross, is one of the schools that will be getting a grant. And their librarian was just telling me that they, before Katrina, they only had a few computers; now they have a lot. They're actually going to rebuild their school because their buildings were condemned. And so they're going to move to Gentilly.

But it's great to have this chance to get to be here with them and to see a lot of progress. I really have seen a lot, especially in the schools. There's a lot of rebuilding of schools. I just had a photo with all the schools who have been awarded one of these library grants. Now four schools in St. Bernard Parish have been awarded grants, and these are schools that are ready to stock their libraries. They get the grants when they're open and up and ready to stock their libraries. Every school that needed one, in Erath and Vermilion Parish, have gotten a grant. So we really can see some really good progress as each of these school districts try to rebuild.

The scope of it, the whole challenge before school districts of having to rebuild a whole school district at once, as fast as you can, is unprecedented in our country. And I want to congratulate all the school people in New Orleans and all the way across the Gulf Coast who have had the strength and the courage that they've needed to get these schools open again. It's much more difficult than people might think it would be. And it's very important for schools to be open, for kids to be able to go back to their own school. There's something about the routine of going to school that is very comforting for young people, especially children and young people who have faced the trauma of a disaster like Hurricane Katrina.

So I want to congratulate you, Beth, and everybody here at Holy Cross for your hard work and for staying together and keeping your Holy Cross community together. So thanks, everybody. See you all at the next stop.

END 10:26 A.M. CDT

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