Week 2 at the Legislature

House Bill 35 – Take SLT’s Out of Teacher Evaluations This Year

LFT worked with Senator Troy Carter to develop legislation that would ensure SLT’s and all measures of student growth could not be used as part of teacher’s evaluations for this year. After everything that teachers and students have been through this year, we know that these test results will not accurately reflect your abilities as an educator, but instead could add extra pressure and stress to an already difficult year.
 
House Bill 35 was on the schedule for the Senate Education Committee this week, but ended up being delayed. It’s vital that the Committee hears from dedicated educators like you before they consider this important legislation.
 
 

Senate Bill 22 – Making it Harder to Retire  

Senate Bill 22 would raise the age of retirement to 67 for all future employees. In order to receive full benefits, new teachers, school employees, bus drivers and other public servants will have to work 40 years, or until the age of 67.

Senate Bill 22 Passed Senate Retirement Committee

Thank you to the thousands of concerned teachers, school employees, and retirees who sent letters to the Senate Retirement Committee this weekend! Your outcry made a difference -- but despite our work, Senate Bill 22 did successfully pass through the Senate Retirement Committee.

Now, the bill must return to the Senate Floor, for a full vote of the Senate before moving on to the Louisiana House of Representatives for approval. Please take a moment to ask your Senator to VOTE NO on this unnecessary and damaging legislation.

Senate Bill 22 would raise the age of retirement to 67 for all future employees. In order to receive full benefits, new teachers, school employees, bus drivers and other public servants will have to work 40 years, or until the age of 67.

The Legislative Session is Underway!

The 2021 Legislative Session began Monday, April 12th and LFT is tracking nearly 50 bills, all with the potential to impact Louisiana teachers, school employees, and their students. Our primary areas of focus include legislation around teacher & student evaluations, ensuring a pay raise for teachers & school employees, protecting employees’ union rights and protecting public funding sources for public education.

Here’s what you need to know:

The March Newsletter

PAY RAISES

On March 10th the Board of Elementary and Secondary Education (BESE) passed their proposal for the minimum foundation program (MFP) – the funding formula for Louisiana’s K-12 schools.
 
During the meeting, the Board decided to heed the recommendation from the MFP task force: passing a proposal that calls for an $80 million dollar increase in the MFP. The task force had decided on a 1.375% increase (or $40 million) put into Level 1 of the MFP for general classroom funding and another 1.375% increase, put into level 3, for raises. That comes out to $400 increase for teachers and $200 for school employees, spread out over the entire year - a meager raise. LFT was one of only two organizations in the state to oppose this proposal, and has consistently pushed for a larger pay increase.
 
In an unprecedented turn of events, the letter that BESE sent to the legislature, which outlines their MFP proposal, made a slight, but important, deviation from the task forces' recommendation. Instead of putting $40 million into level three where it would necessarily go towards raises and and the supplementary retirement benefits, BESE directed that funding to level 4, which is the portion of the MFP that goes towards supplementary allocations for specific programs such as career training experiences, dual enrollment and enrichment courses, assistance with high cost special education services, and recruitment and employment of international associate teachers.
 
LFT has consistently called on the BESE and the legislature to match the pay increase seen in 2019: $1,000 increase for teachers and $500 for support personnel, at a minimum. This plan requires a $101 million increase to level 3 of the MFP, which is the portion of the school funding formula that provides for employee salaries.  
 
As the MFP proceeds to the legislature for approval, LFT will continue to work towards a larger raise for teachers and school employees during this