Dozens of teachers in Livingston Parish called in sick Wednesday in a protest targeting the school board and administrators over the district's reopening plans.
Since the beginning of the school year, Livingston Parish teachers have said school preparations were inadequate amid the coronavirus pandemic.
Tamara Cutit, the president of Livingston Federation of Teachers who's taught at Denham Springs Freshman High School for 17 years, said the goal of the sickout was to raise attention to those concerns to open up talks with district leaders.
A number of teachers say they've struggled with balancing online and in-person instruction and some students are falling behind because of over-worked teachers and other logistical problems, Cutit said.
"We have not been able to participate in decision-making about what we’re required to do," she said. "We are the ones in the classroom. We’re the ones who are having to do the work.”
A teachers union and a nonprofit teachers advocacy group representing about 1,100 of Livingston Parish's 1,590 public school teachers want the…
School officials say nearly 100 teachers took part in the sickout, but the unions representing 1,100 of Livingston Parish's 1,590 public school teachers say far more participated.
Schools in Livingston Parish were open to students Wednesday, and substitute teachers and staff members stood in place of students' regular teachers if they were out.
“All the kids had a teacher for their classrooms,” said district spokeswoman Delia Taylor.
Roughly 7% of the school district's 2,600 students are taking classes online, though some have moved between in-person and virtual instruction since classes started.
Teachers in Pointe Coupee Parish staged similar sickouts over pay raises, which led to schools closing two days earlier this month in response. They returned to classrooms after striking a truce when the school board agreed to revisit approving raises.
Pointe Coupee Parish teachers returned to classrooms Thursday after nearly a week of staging “sickouts” to protest the delay of pay raises the…