St. James summit offers teachers free continued learning credits

Published 12:00 am Friday, July 25, 2008


Staff Reporter

LUTCHER – The St. James Parish School Board is trying something a little different this year to get teachers excited about its professional development summit.

According to the parish’s official Summer Summit agenda booklet, Tina Turner will be hosting a special aerobics session from 3:30 – 4:30 p.m. Monday, Aug. 4 for teachers to unwind after the three-day conference.

But School Board President Carol Weber said on Tuesday that officials were considering canceling the event because not enough teachers have registered to participate thus far.

(In actuality, Turner was never scheduled to appear. “It’s all in good fun,” Weber said.)

But what St. James teachers are receiving – in addition to the sizeable pay raise the board approved earlier this month – is an opportunity to complete 18 hours of state-mandated continuing learning unit credit (CLU) over three days while earning $200 a day for showing up.

“We’re excited about being able to offer our teachers this opportunity,” Weber said. “Other districts make their teachers pay to receive CLU credit.”

The summit begins Thursday and continues on Friday and Monday, Aug. 4. Teachers are required to attend the conference but, in another change this year, can select from several different sessions that are offered. Some sessions are mandatory and teachers are encouraged to select topics more suited to their subject fields.

Previous summer conferences have been less flexible, offering just morning and afternoon sessions, Weber said.

About 325 teachers are expected to be in attendance. The sessions will be held at Lutcher High School, the school board office, the public relations building and the Career and Technology Center.