By Quo Vadis Sylve Hollins
Twin sisters Kayla and Kyla Frey have recently made headlines for their outstanding achievements at Frederick A. Douglass High School, the number 1 open enrollment high school in New Orleans. Kayla and Kyla rank first and third in their class, respectively, and have amassed nearly $5 million in scholarships.
Despite the challenges presented by the COVID-19 pandemic and Hurricane Ida, Kayla excelled in her studies and managed to participate in various extracurricular activities such as softball, where she was recognized as the Scholar Athlete of the Year in 11th grade, and a member of the award-winning Aspen Challenge Team. She was also involved in community service initiatives such as Operation Hope 4 NOLA and served as a statistician for the football team. Kayla was an active member of various student organizations such as the National Honor Society, School Newspaper (reporter), Bard Ambassador Program, Bard Student Leadership Council, and Total Black Out Organization (secretary) - the African American Studies Club. Most recently she was named a Gates Scholarship Recipient.
Kyla, on the other hand, was a semi-finalist for the Gates Scholarship and was a member of the AP Pathways program in 10th grade. She was also a Peer Tutor for Bard and an active member of the National Honor Society. Kyla loves painting and making bracelets, and she enjoys watching sports, which led her to want to pursue a degree in Kinesiology to study athletic training and work in the NFL as an athletic trainer.
Leslie Frey, the twins' mother, expressed the pride she and her husband, Derrick Frey, have in her daughters' achievements, stating that "whatever they need, we were there for them, emotional support." She also emphasized the importance of using the resources available at their school and not letting one's surroundings limit their potential.
Kayla and Kyla credit their success to their strong work ethic, confidence in themselves, and the support of their family, their school leader Towana Pierre-Floyd, and teachers. "We're always trying to inspire somebody else and let them know they can do it too," said Kayla and Kyla.
The Frey sisters will be attending their top-choice schools, Yale and Notre Dame, in the fall. Kayla plans to study sociology with a concentration on social inequality, while Kyla will pursue a degree in Kinesiology.
About KIPP New Orleans School
KIPP New Orleans Schools is a Louisiana non-profit organization that operates 13 open-enrollment public schools serving 6,200 students in grades Pre-Kindergarten through 12th. KIPP New Orleans Schools is dedicated to empowering students with the knowledge and skills they need to pursue college and choice-filled lives. Since 2005, KIPP New Orleans has educated thousands of students and today supports over 1000 alumni in college and career