Fiercely determined. Strongly protective of public education.
After years of attacks on our teachers and our schools, the Louisiana Federation of Teachers brought the fight to reclaim the promise of public education to the Louisiana Legislature.
This year, LFT began to turn the tide against those who would damage public education. Here is the record of LFT success in the 2014 Regular Legislative Session:
- After courts ruled three times in favor of LFT that Gov. Jindal’s so-called 2010 Act 1 “reforms” were unconstitutional, the administration finally met with educators to negotiate about teacher rights. With the adoption of Act 570, a first step was taken to restore due process in the discipline and dismissal of teachers.
- Because a teacher was handcuffed and taken to jail for tugging on the shirt tail of a student who refused to follow school policy, LFT worked to enact Act 670. Thanks to LFT, teachers who are accused of minor offenses cannot be arrested on school grounds, but must be issued summonses instead.
- LFT worked to make sure that last year’s one-time $70 million increase in K-12 funding—including the teacher salary supplement—becomes permanent.
- To make sure that test scores are not unfairly used to label teachers, LFT worked for passage of Act 515, which prohibits using the test scores of students with excessive absences to evaluate teachers.
- In fairness to school support staff who are called upon to act as substitute teachers, LFT worked for passage of Act 231, which requires school boards to pay employees at the substitute teacher rate if it is higher than their usual salary.
- LFT convinced lawmakers to adopt Act 659, a common-sense change that makes the extended sick leave law more user-friendly for teachers and school employees facing catastrophic illness.
- LFT pushed for the first cost of living raise for public retirees in more than five years.
- Questioning the ability of COMPASS to fairly and accurately evaluate teachers, LFT pushed for adoption of Act 240, requiring a subcommittee of the Accountability Commission to recommend improvements to the evaluation system.
- Because the public has a right to know when agencies like BESE consider changes to rules, LFT worked for passage of Act 401, which requires agencies to publish rule promulgation schedules on the Internet.
- Breakaway school districts would split communities and reduce state funding for local school systems across Louisiana. LFT was instrumental in defeating bills that would tear our school systems apart.
- A bill that would have weakened teacher unions and silenced employee voices by eliminating payroll deduction of member dues was defeated.
- Seeking more accountability for voucher schools, LFT supported Act 460, which requires schools that accept voucher funds to facilitate proper auditing by maintaining separate accounts for the money.