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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:

MFP Task Forces Passes Recommendation on School Funding

Today, the MFP Task Force met to discuss the funding formula for Louisiana K-12 Public Schools. Each year, the task force meets to develop a recommendation for the school funding formula. That recommendation will be considered by the Board of Elementary and Secondary Education when they develop their proposal for consideration by the Louisiana Legislature.

Meager Pay Raise or Meager Stipend? Ask the BESE and the Governor…

Today, Governor Edwards announced that he plans to include a small pay increase for teachers and school employees in his new Executive Budget. He proposed $400 for teachers and $200 for support employees. What remains unclear, is if this would result in a sustained raise or a one-time stipend, and whether or not there will also be additional monies put in level 1 of the MFP for schools to use more generally.

2nd Special Session: Week Two!

This week we conclude the second week in the ongoing Special Legislative Session, bringing us to nearly the half way point. Due to the oncoming Hurricane Delta, some meetings were moved up until earlier in the week, most notably both the House Education and Senate Education Committees conducted their weekly meetings at the same time on Wednesday morning. They both considered important legislation, but here are some of the highlights:

Ask the Senate Education Committee to Support SB 31

One of the most important bills that we will hear in this abbreviated legislation is Senate Bill 31 by Senator Cleo Fields. If passed, this bill would prohibit the use of statewide student assessments conducted during the 2020-2021 school year from being used to evaluate teacher performance. Essentially, schools could (and likely would) still have testing this year, but the scores couldn't count against a teacher's performance evaluation.

The Next Legislative Session Starts TOMORROW

The Louisiana legislature has convened a Special Session to begin Monday. It shall end no later than 6 P.M. on October 27, 2020 and there are 70 different items that may be subject to legislation during the session. Included in the items enumerated in the Call are state tax revenue and school funding, among others.
Because the session was called so quickly, there are still any number of different bills being written that could impact teachers, support employees and our students. While the session may be short, decisions will be made that could have a lasting impact on Louisiana schools and it is vital that educators stay up to date about the ongoing issues.

House Bill 59 - Does it Help Teachers?

All across the country, school officials are working to pass legislation that would shield them from lawsuits in the event that their employees or students were to contract COVID-19 at school. In Louisiana, this effort took form in House Bill 59, which was introduced at the request of the Louisiana School Boards Association.