August 10, 2022

Meet our Founding Principal of Great Hearts Harveston, Samuel Heisman

Who was your most influential teacher or school leader?

This is a hard one; it is between my father, 12th grade literature teacher, 2nd grade teacher, or Renaissance lit professor in college. They were each, in their own way, able to identify something of value in what were often confused and unconfident sentences in my writing. After their first read-through, each of them sought me out and kindly, but firmly, had me explain more about what I meant. These conversations helped me find a voice and seek out opportunities to learn instead of shying away from them.

What continues to inspire you to remain committed to this work?

I left education for a time and pursued a career in construction sales, management, and fieldwork. During that time away, during my time on unfinished concrete skyrises—often in 32-degree windy weather—I’d find myself thinking about grading papers and having conferences with the authors of said papers; I’d think about phone calls to parents to congratulate them on their student’s growth or to strategize with them about how to achieve growth; and, I’d think about my fellow teachers and the conversations we would have about our content and our students. In short, I missed the community—the village—which forms around a school with a clearly defined vision like ours: “cultivating minds and hearts through the pursuit of Truth, Goodness, and Beauty.” Making that community stronger and clarifying that vision such that it can be actualized … that inspires me every day.

What do you want people to know about your students, families, and your school?

- Classical education doesn't mean it is reserved for a few. It is for everyone.

- Though our liberal arts academic program is rigorous, it is also full of life and vigor, and our teachers are passionate about making it come alive for any and every soul in our care.

- We are committed to building community, and we love the city of Baton Rouge.

- We are committed to the lifelong pursuit of Goodness, Truth, and Beauty

How can I learn more about Great Hearts?

Start with our website:

We will have a breakthrough event this year at our campus on September 30. It is currently under construction for our opening in the Fall of 2023.

We are also hosting and attending many events around Baton Rouge. The easiest way to track those events is to subscribe to our newsletter by joining our interest list, follow our Facebook, and follow our Instagram.

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