Lawrence school board to discuss COVID-19’s effect on teacher workload
photo by: Mackenzie Clark/Journal-World File Photo
As the coronavirus pandemic has changed the way education is conducted, teachers have taken on a larger workload, administration officials said.
To help address this, the Lawrence school board on Monday will discuss what drives teacher workload and actions the district can take to stop it from increasing.
According to a presentation included in the board’s meeting agenda, some COVID-19 issues are leading to increased workload for teachers. Examples include teachers needing to supervise students on safety protocols that aim to limit the spread of the virus, spending more time on planning for classes taught through hybrid instruction and providing more support to students during a difficult time.
The presentation also notes internal school forces, such as the size of the school, and external forces, such as learning expectations for students, can be drivers in increasing workload.
As part of the discussion, the administrators plan to consider possible intervention methods that can be used to mitigate the issue. The presentation notes some methods include teachers seeking support from others, schools setting boundaries and the district reallocating resources and supporting teacher professional development, among others.
The school board will meet at 5 p.m. Monday through an online conference call. Because of the COVID-19 pandemic, the school district encourages the public to watch the meeting on Midco channel 26 or online at youtube.com/USD497.
Those who want to speak during public comments at the meeting can still do so. The district asks for comments to be sent by email to PatronCommentary@usd497.org. Comments can also be emailed to board members ahead of the meeting. Their contact information is available on the district’s website at usd497.org/Board.
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