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Here are the 18 recommendations from the Louisiana Let Teachers Teach task force

1 month 2 days 19 hours ago Wednesday, May 22 2024 May 22, 2024 May 22, 2024 4:50 PM May 22, 2024 in News
Source: WBRZ

BATON ROUGE — The Let Teachers Teach workgroup of the Louisiana Department of Education on Wednesday released 18 recommendations for school districts, state administrators and legislators. It listed its recommendations under six key headers.

PROFESSIONAL LEARNING — Educators are required to participate in professional learning focused on academic curricula, classroom management, and engagement strategies. While teachers understand the importance of professional learning, they are often mandated to repeat the same sessions year after year. These redundant professional learning sessions can leave teachers feeling disconnected and undervalued. Therefore, the LTT workgroup recommends:

Tailor professional growth plans; Make collaboration meetings worthwhile; Ensure ample time for classroom preparation.

REQUIRED TRAININGS — Educators must complete legislatively-mandated trainings. It is common for teachers to complete these trainings outside of the normal school day and without compensation. Therefore, the LTT workgroup recommends:

Shift legislatively mandated trainings to a cycle; Enact pre-test exemptions from required trainings.

STUDENT BEHAVIOR AND DISCIPLINE — Too often, students are not removed from class or school for extreme, disruptive behavior. Furthermore, some students are chronically absent creating challenges for teachers to ensure learning. Therefore, the LTT workgroup recommends: 

Decouple student behavior and the school accountability system; Trust us, don't blame us; Place ungovernable students at alternative sites for behavior support; Address challenges of chronic absenteeism; Limit cell phone use.

NON-ACADEMIC RESPONSIBILITIES — The responsibility of supporting students' mental and behavioral health has fallen increasingly on teachers. Teachers should not be expected to be mental health professionals. Therefore, the LTT workgroup recommends: 

Support student mental health challenges through trained professionals; Stop forcing teachers to be mental health professionals; Pay teachers for additional, non-academic work.

CURRICULUM AND INSTRUCTION — Teachers are often forced to “follow a script” and adhere to it strictly, rather than having the freedom to teach with integrity and utilize their own knowledge of best practices. While this may be helpful for novice or struggling teachers, the approach is not appropriate for the vast majority of Louisiana’s educators. Curriculum  should be used to best serve the needs of students. Therefore, the LTT workgroup recommends:

Eliminate the mandate to read verbatim from teaching manuals, excluding direct instruction; Create a repository of high-quality, easy-to-access teacher resources; Provide scheduling, pacing and implementation guidance for core content areas.

PLANNING — Some teachers are forced to write lesson plans that are burdensome and sometimes do not align with curricula. This causes unnecessary paperwork and many hours of additional work, often outside of school hours. Therefore, the LTT workgroup recommends:

Effective teachers should have professional autonomy in their classrooms; Abolish antiquated lesson planning requirements.

The full set of suggestions is at the Louisiana Department of Education website

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