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Louisiana Public Square - 2019

The Value of Teachers | January 2019 | Louisiana Public Square

Louisiana public school teachers returning to the classroom in January, may see a pay increase on the horizon. Governor John Bel Edwards says his top priority for the 2019 legislative session is funding a teacher pay raise. Educators in the South earn an average of $50,955 annually, In Louisiana, the average is $49,745. But, some teacher advocates already are complaining that the Governor’s proposed $1,000 bump in pay is too low. So, what is an adequate raise? How will a salary increase and teacher retirement costs be funded? Should support staff be included in the mix? And what can local communities expect in exchange for higher teacher pay? Louisiana Public Square looks for answers to these questions and more on “The Value of Teachers” Wednesday, January 23 at 7pm on LPB and in New Orleans on WLAE. (Program recording Wednesday, January 16.) The panelists are: - Sen. Conrad Appel, R-Metairie; Senate Education Committee - Michael Faulk, Louisiana Association of School Superintendents - Debbie Meaux, Louisiana Association of Educators - Donald Songy, Senior Policy Advisor to Governor John Bel Edwards Beth Courtney, LPB CEO, and Barry Erwin, president of the Council for A Better Louisiana, will host.

Louisiana Public Square

Louisiana Public Square is LPB’s monthly public affairs program. It provides citizens a forum to voice their opinions and concerns about issues affecting Louisiana to leading experts and key decision makers. LPB has received state and national recognition for the series and we are proud that it serves as a model for other stations around the country. One of the primary goals of Louisiana Public Square is to allow different points of view to be expressed and heard. Oftentimes we have seen attitudinal changes of discussion participants after being exposed to other opinions on the program. (You can track these changes in attitude at our surveys link.)

One of the key features of this format is the depth and insightfulness of the discussion and questions generated in the crucible of citizen deliberations on a small group level. These queries are informed by not only the background material, but by the give-and-take dynamic of an open forum, skillfully moderated so that all are encouraged to speak their mind.

Louisiana Public Square evolved from the deliberative democracy concept of the MacNeil/Lehrer Productions’ By The People initiative. The goal is to encourage civic engagement and civil discourse – the foundations of a strong democracy.