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Jindal vetoes COLA, signs state budget

Governor Bobby Jindal has signed a $24.6 billion state budget that includes an additional $36 million for public education, but vetoed a 1.5% cost of living adjustment for retired teachers, school employees and other public servants.

Schools get last-minute $36 million bump

Resolution by Rep. John Bel Edwards pumps money into education budget

Just as he did two years ago, Rep. John Bel Edwards (D-Amite) found a way to increase funding for schools even after public education’s Minimum Foundation Program formula had been rejected.
As the session drew to a close, the Senate finally approved Rep. Edwards’ HCR 231, which calls for an additional 1.375%, or $36 million, to be included in the budget for public education. It had been held up while waiting for the House to take a crucial vote on the controversial SAVE plan.

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Big business wants to tell teachers: SHUT UP!

For the third straight year, the Louisiana Association of Business and Industry has made eliminating payroll deduction of union dues one of their primary goals. Like well-heeled extremists in other states, LABI hopes to get rid of any organized resistance by making union membership as inconvenient as possible.

Changes may be in store for teacher evaluations

Although the final decisions will be up to the Board of Elementary and Secondary Education, steps were taken this week to make Louisiana’s teacher evaluation system fairer and more accurate. The biggest of these is a recommendation to suspend Value Added Model component of teacher evaluations for another year.

LA charters praised for lack of accountability

The National Alliance for Public Charter Schools has ranked Louisiana as the second highest of all the states, based on how our state’s charter school law aligns with the organization’s model law. Their rankings reward states for making charter schools less accountable to local voters and taxpayers.

Happy Holidays from the LFT!

Camron T. Cheeks, a sixth-grade student at Mary McLeod Bethune Elementary School of Literature and Technology in New Orleans, is the designer of the Louisiana Federation of Teachers’ 2014 holiday greeting card. Camron’s teacher is William Jones.