Recess Will Now Be Mandatory in Louisiana Schools
Big news for schools across Louisiana. A bill requiring at least 15 minutes of recess each day has passed. The bill calls for mandatory recess in all K-5 elementary public schools across the state.
State Representative Beryl Amedee tells KEEL News says he bill excludes charter schools because they can set up their own policies on classroom time and recess time. The big change with this measure is that schools do not have to count this recess time toward the instructional time which is required.
Amedee says "it is absolutely vital. These children are still growing and developing and need unstructured time to play and move around."
How Much Instructional Time Is Required in Louisiana Schools?
The law calls for a minimum of 360 instructional minutes in each school day. Amedee says this time can be carved into the schedule by trimming homeroom time or other parts of the day that are not included in the instructional time. She says State Superintendent Dr. Cade Brumley indicated he did not think it would be a problem to find this time.
Amedee adds that only 11% of Louisiana elementary schools don't have at least 15 minutes of recess time each day.
The only opposition to the bill came from the Louisiana Federation of Teachers who are concerned this could lengthen the school day which would require more time from teachers.
This bill passed with a unanimous 39-0 vote in the Senate and is now on the way to the Governor's desk. Amedee says she does not expect this change to be a problem for the Governor.