Meet Lisa Batiste teaching students GRIT

Internationally, 2020 was a year of medical, social, political, racial, and economic upheaval caused by the coronavirus pandemic. More than 7,000 Louisianans died while 173,000 were unemployed and all 710,000 K-12 students and teachers were sent into virtual schooling. Within the struggles of the year, the America saw its own horrors and beauty. Moving into 2021,  The Drum sought Louisianans who are not only people to watch but are people who work for the community, for the demands of nation building, and for the growth of others. They are People for 2021.

Through the MyGRIT Course, creator and owner Lisa Batiste helps students deepen their learning by increasing their critical thinking ability. She works with stakeholders within school districts, schools, and community nonprofit tutoring centers, offering one-on-one tutoring, group ACT Preparation, and trainings for independent tutors. Her vision is to impact the way students learn across the nation, she said.

Batiste is a person for the moment, a Person for 2021.

The Drum asked her about 2020 and her focus for 2021. “2020 has ‘raised’ me emotionally, spiritually, and cognitively in a manner that I would liken to a birthing. The labor was long, but I’m grateful and filled with excitement for my present. As a result, my work has flourished and thus so my passion, which has always been in alignment with community and the uplifting and empowerment of those I ‘do life’ with. 2020 and all it’s disruptions—no matter how emotionally demanding—merely stimulated me to see the opportunity to do better for me, my work, and my community.

What has been the best thing to do during the pandemic? Finding time to unplug!

Lisa Batiste

What advice would you give others? This is a short question with a long answer! Remember your present is a manifestation of your actions, based on your thoughts and feelings. If you pay close attention to both and stay true to “your” value system, then you will be covered when the season is difficult and fulfilled when your season is abundant!

What’s your motto for 2021? Critical thinking is our singular focus!

This year I resolve to continue to “live forward” in order to create more positive impact in all areas of my life!

How will you impact others? Train and certify 20 tutors at community tutoring center in the MyGRIT Course Tutoring Training Certification and expose 300 parents to the “Parent Effort Learning Action Guide: An Action Guide to Deepen Learning and Critical Thinking Ability of Your Student.”

What can we expect? Increased collaborations across our target service market beginning with our inaugural MyGRIT Course Virtual Education Conference set for August 13-15. The goal for this conference is to bring together educators focused on methods of increasing critical thinking ability; identify potential mutually beneficial collaborations, tools, and networking across various sectors of education; create effective critical thinking teaching strategies online, in classrooms, and hybrid with an aligned parental support guides; and increase understanding of critical thinking and its role in learning readiness, critical listening ability, note-taking process, process thinking during studying, monitoring, and self assessment.

What has been your measure of success? Alignment with others who seek to fulfill their passion through education. Truly, that’s how I measure success: alignment and the special opportunity to create with others of like mind.

What are you reading? Lots of Spanish articles. I have been teaching myself Spanish for a couple years. Normally, I would be into a couple books, just not at the moment.

What are you listening to? Alicia Keys’ “Brand New Me” and Frank Sinatra’s “The Girl from Ipanema”; Boney James’s “Stop, Look, Listen”; and various other genres. I love music!

What are you watching? “The Queen’s Gambit” for the second time.


Meet other People for 2021.

About Zenobia Reed 67 Articles
Zenobia Reed is a Ponchatoula native and the social media editor for The Drum Newspaper. Follow her work on twitter and Facebook @theDrumNews.