Applicants for teaching positions shall abide by the following criteria:






A teacher must hold a valid teaching certificate issued by the Louisiana State Department of Education, the requirements for which are determined by the Louisiana State Board of Education.


The term "valid teaching certificate" implies that the holder of such certificate is certified in the specialized field or level of instruction in which he/she works.



A teacher's morals should be above reproach, and he/she should be in good physical, mental and emotional condition.




Before a teacher is employed in a system, there must be a need for a teacher in a subject field or upon a particular level of instruction.



All positions are to be filled with properly certified teachers when available.



A teacher who desires employment files application for a given position with the parish Superintendent of Schools who in turn submits said application to the local School Board for official action.



Parish Policies



Any teacher accepting employment in the Washington Parish Schools agrees to accept the assignment with respect to room and grade given him/her by the administrator.



Any teacher accepting employment in the Washington Parish Schools must accept routine duties assigned by the principal and attend all professional meetings called by the administration.



Before a teacher is legally employed he/she must have on file in the Superintendent's office a copy of his/her latest valid teaching certificate and other information pertaining to retirement, with-holding tax, and other necessary information.



New teachers having had experience in other systems must have a statement signed by their former employer attesting to said experience.



Teachers are not allowed to collect money from children for any purpose without the knowledge and permission of the principal.  It is recommended that schools have one United Fund Drive for collection of money from students and principal.



No sales persons or solicitors are to visit teachers during school without written permission from the Parish Superintendent.  Teachers are not required to attend sales meetings unless they so desire.



Each teacher must be responsible for all school properties in his/her care.  Any properties so assigned to any teacher must be accounted for at the end of the year, except that over which he/she has no control.



The teacher is directly responsible to the principal of the school.  Any friction or misunderstanding that the teacher has relative to his/her school work should be taken up first with the principal.  Only after consultation with the principal should the matter be brought to the attention of the Parish Superintendent.  If the matter is not then settled, the teacher has the recourse of going directly to the School Board while the School Board is in session to state his/her grievances.



It is usually an indication of strength when a teacher can manage his/her discipline problems alone.  However, serious problems should be taken to the principal who is always willing to help.  Any friction between the teacher and the students should be discussed with the principal so that he/she may be in possession of the facts and thus more effectively understand the teacher's position in the matter.



The teacher must feel and assume responsibility for the welfare of the entire school and should be ready to cooperate in all school undertakings.



Teachers earning sufficient credits to place them in a higher salary bracket shall notify the Superintendent in writing on or before August 15 with an official transcript of credits, validated by the Louisiana Department of Education.



A teacher reemployed on a temporary certificate shall supply the Superintendent with an official transcript of credits substantiating his/her eligibility for temporary certification by September 15.  Teachers failing to comply with this regulation may be dismissed.



Teachers beginning their first year employment in the parish must have a valid Louisiana teaching certificate in the parish office by the end of the first month of school.  It is the teacher's responsibility to secure this information.



Teachers will submit a college transcript when applying for employment.



Duties and Responsibilities



General Duties



A teacher must accept the responsibility for keeping adequate records.  Since school records are public records, it is of utmost importance that they be kept accurate and up-to­date.



It is the duty of every teacher to organize and present subject matter in such a manner that every child in the classroom will be challenged to think and will feel that he/she is a part of the whole.



A teacher should recognize differences in the abilities of students and make adjustments where needed.



A teacher should be ever on the alert to recognize subnormal physical differences and make whatever possible adjustments that he deems necessary for the welfare of the child.  Particular attention should be given to any signs of defects of speech, hearing and seeing.



The teacher is responsible for keeping student discipline conducive to good study procedure. He/she should be prompt and firm in all situations that demand attention from the students.



The proper appearance of the classroom over and beyond the normal janitorial services falls into the category of teacher responsibility.  The rooms should be kept clean and neat with the furniture in orderly arrangement.



It is the duty of a teacher to be courteous, respectful, and fair at all times.



In presenting or supervising classroom activities it is most essential to be cheerful and constructive.



Teachers who are absent from their normal teaching duties must leave an outline of activities to be performed by the substitute teacher for the period of anticipated absence.


These factors may be implemented in the use of a pleasing tone of voice, dressing in a becoming manner, and maintaining a pleasant atmosphere in the classroom.



Specific Duties



Teachers should report for duty one or two days before the opening of school in order to make necessary preparation to begin work promptly when school opens.



All teachers shall report for duty on teaching days in time to begin class promptly.  It is a violation of the School Board rules for a teacher to be late for work.  Tardiness to work without a valid excuse is considered willful neglect of duty.  Every teacher should have an available timepiece of some kind in order to open school on time and follow accurately the time schedule of the school.



Correcting and marking papers should be delayed until after school hours, except when correcting and marking papers is correlated with classroom work, or during free periods or study halls.



The school officials of Washington Parish have placed emphasis on the proper care of school property.  Constant efforts in caring for the property on the part of the school officials, teachers, janitors, and children should be reflected in the appearance of the buildings and grounds.  There should be no carelessness or negligence.  Closely related to the emphasis placed on the care of school property should be an effort to make the classroom attractive.



Teachers shall see that furniture, apparatus, maps, books, and other equipment of the school are not defaced or injured.  They shall, upon discovery of any injury to the school property, report the same to the principal who shall require replacement or payment in full.



Teachers will be held responsible for the discipline of their respective classrooms, except in extreme cases.  It weakens the teacher's power of control to constantly send students to the principal.



Teachers shall supervise the behavior of students on the playgrounds, in the halls, in school rooms, or any place where students may be during time of intermission.



Children should be encouraged to develop right attitudes, feelings, and behavior through obedience to school rules and regulations, and respect for their schoolmates, teachers, and administrators.



The following factors should be taken into consideration in administering punishment (See policy, File: JD, Discipline)



Never attempt to punish a child in the presence of other students;



Employ reasonable punishments at a desirable time and place; make the punishment fit the offense.



Do not deduct from grades as a means of punishment.



A check should be frequently made to see that classrooms are properly ventilated.



Every teacher should teach the children in the elementary grades plays and games during the period provided for that purpose.



School children must always be under supervision of teachers - recesses, noon hour, before and after school.  Teachers shall arrive at school by 7:30 a.m.



Teachers are prohibited from social visiting with each other, and from engaging in work not pertaining to school duties during school hours.



Teachers shall attend all regular and special meetings authorized by the Superintendent or Supervisor, and no excuse for absence shall be accepted other than a reason that would justify the absence from a regular day at school.



Teachers whose classes are dismissed before the regular closing hour shall perform such duties during the remainder of the school day as the principal may direct.



When visitors enter the classroom, the teacher is expected to receive them courteously but to continue with the work at hand, parents and visitors must have permission from the Principal before visiting the classroom.



It is the policy of the School Board to welcome any and all interested parties to open School Board meetings, therefore, any teacher or group of teachers are invited to attend any School Board meeting during any time when schools are not in session.  If a teacher or group of teachers desire to attend while school is in session, they should have a concrete problem to discuss with the School Board, and permission must be granted by the Parish Superintendent.



Where no special teachers of music and art are available, each teacher must use the facilities at hand to carry on the required programs.



Teachers should attend to the physical education needs and comfort of the students under their care.  Physical Ed. period should be a learning period as well as a period of participation in traditional group games.



Teachers are required to furnish promptly to the Principal at the close of the school session all reports, books, guides and other required records neatly and accurately made up.



While no effort will be made to restrict the social activity of teachers, they should, while connected with the public schools, devote their time and attention to the interests of the school and shall not allow social, business and home duties to interfere with their daily preparation for classroom work.



Those teachers who have a preparation period must use this time for the preparation of classroom instruction or duties designated by the Principal.  This is not a personal privilege period and may not be used as such.



All teachers must report to school not later than 7:30 a.m. daily and are not to leave school prior to 2:45 p.m. daily.  Teachers must report to their classrooms at least ten (10) minutes prior to the time that students are to report, and will not leave their classroom until five (5) minutes after the students have cleared the building, except as otherwise assigned by the Principal.  Teachers who have special duty assignment will report at the time and place designated by the Principal.  The school building should be locked when students have cleared the building so that entrance cannot be made from the outside.



Every teacher shall be present for commence­ment exercises scheduled in their school.  Teachers will be assigned duty for all school activities as part of their responsibility as a teacher.  Failure to comply with these assignments will be reported to the Central Office and made a permanent part of that person's personnel file.



Each teacher is to maintain an individual folder for each student and each subject on a semester basis.  These folders will include any item that will influence the grade that the student receives.  Grades that are made by judgment of the teacher should have explanatory remarks.  All of these materials should be given to the student after the semester ends.



If a student is not passing or doing satisfactory work, the teacher will notify the parent by letter at the mid-way point of the marking period.



Daily lesson plans must be written, at least five (5) days in advance and maintained in the classroom.



Music teachers will devise grading policy and will present same to the Principal for his/her approval.  Music grades will not be given below seventh grade level.



Teachers are strictly prohibited from using profane or vulgar language and any terminology that would be degrading to any student's mental or physical condition or character.



Below is a list of suggestions that are of interest and will prove helpful to every teacher or other School Board employee if followed:



Become acquainted with parents



Live in the community where you teach



Refrain from gossiping



Your personal conduct should be above reproach.



Your school work should be done in a satisfactory manner; however, you should budget some time for extra school activities.



Become acquainted with the home life of your students; make home visits, be active in the Parent-Teacher Association's affairs and other activities of parents, students and teachers.



Do not criticize adversely the students, school personnel, or the school; try to find something worth praising.



Be tactful, and understanding with children, co-workers, parents, and school patrons.



If children and others do not "live up to your standards," do not be angry or disturbed.  Study their environment and opportunities and be in sympathy with their condition.  Do everything you can to help them.



If you are not happy in your position, ask for a transfer.



The teacher should accept the Superintendent's or the principal's suggestions, responsibility given, and assist him/her when required.



The teacher should feel secure and free to express to the Superintendent, Supervisor, or principal his/her ideas or opinions in matters for the betterment of the school system.



There is no activity in school that takes precedence over classroom instruction, except in particular or extreme cases where immediate attention must be given as authorized by the Principal.  This is not to discourage planned activities that are coordinated with and have approval of the Principal.  Some violations of this policy that are prohibited are:



Students carrying notes to classrooms.



Intra-school teacher visitations during class.



Personal services rendered by students for teachers.



Unplanned routine administrative activity.



When groups of students or classes are moving from one area to another, such as to lunch­room, assembly, physical education area, they must be in a consolidated, organized group.  Students may not move from one area to another unless accompanied by the teacher and they are under visible control at all times.






A teacher has the authority to select and present materials within the aims and objectives of a democratic society.  The materials are selected after the teacher considers the levels, abilities, and interests of students assigned to him/her for supervision.



A teacher has the authority to supervise classroom activities and experiences in such a manner that they will be beneficial to the class as a whole.



The teacher has the authority to grade and to evaluate the work of each student under his/her supervision.



Teachers have the authority to supervise other curricular activities not incorporated within the limits of school hours.  Since all school activities are considered curricula, they should be under the supervision of a teacher.



Teachers have the authority to suspend students from the classroom and are responsible for seeing that the student reports to the office immediately.  The student shall not be readmitted to class until after a Principal-Teacher consultation.



Principals may give teachers permission to use corporal punishment as a last resort.  In administering corporal punishment, teachers are admonished to use discretion.  It must be administered in a just manner and shall not be excessive or abusive.  The teacher shall not strike the student above the waist.  If a student has some infirmity that would preclude corporal punishment, he should be referred to the Principal.  Teachers and school personnel are urged to contact parents when a chronic problem is developing.  An adult witness shall be present when administering corporal punishment.


Revised:  September, 2000



Ref:    Washington Parish Teacher's Handbook


Washington Parish School Board