Reminder: State Law Requires a Minimum of 225 Minutes of Planning Time Per Week and 30 Minutes of Duty Free Lunch
Last school year, five high schools in Caddo signed onto a class action grievance citing the lack of planning time and the resulting injury to classroom instruction. The Caddo Parish School Board answered by unanimously passing a motion to move to a 7 period day for next school year, stating that planning would be daily (minimum of 225 minutes per week) and before and after school would not be used or considered as planning time. The message Red River United members sent in filing the grievances and coming before the board was heard. There is no question that adequate teacher planning time is a professional right which is a core principle of reclaiming the promise of public education.
Louisiana Revised Statute 17:434 states:
Planning time and lunch periods for teachers; requiredA.(1) The State Board of Elementary and Secondary Education shall adopt necessary rules and regulations requiring, beginning with the 2000-2001 school year, each city and parish school board to provide a minimum of forty-five minutes daily planning time, or its weekly equivalent, and a minimum of thirty minutes for lunch each day which shall be duty-free for every teacher actively engaged in the instruction and supervision of students in the public schools. Implementation of planning time and lunch periods as required in this Section for teachers shall not result in a lengthened school day.
Before the Louisiana House Education Committee this past spring, State Superintendent John White supplied testimony stating that any district not providing these minimums are in direct violation of the law. RRU will closely monitor the compliance of Caddo, Bossier, and Red River Parishes with state law. Any deviation from state law will result in action from RRU.
This year, if you are not being given 45 minutes of planning time per day or its weekly equivalent and a 30 minute duty free lunch, or you have questions about this law, contact Red River United atredriverunited.org or 318-424-4579.