Proposal to make recess mandatory in Louisiana public schools

Proposal to make recess mandatory in Louisiana public schools
(Source: Pablo)

LAKE CHARLES, LA (KPLC) - A proposal to make recess mandatory in Louisiana public schools is closer to becoming a reality.

Last week a house education committee approved house bill 842, which would require daily recess for public school students in grades K-8.

The bill is sponsored by Rep. Beryl Amedee, R-Houma.

If the bill passes, it would be an addition to the current law requiring public schools to allocate 30 minutes for physical activity,  which would include P.E. classes.

The proposed law would additionally require each school to provide at least 30 minutes of recess each day.

One parent, Indiana Rideaux, said more time for recess is necessary for students to take a break from academic rigors and re-group.

"Even if they're having a bad day they can run out some of that negative energy and come back and start all over." Rideaux said.

However, some question how it could impact the timing of the school day.

Debra Schum, executive director of the Louisiana Association of Principals, said there needs to be more discussion about how lawmakers will actually implement the law.

"It's not about recess, It's about the wording in that bill," Schum said. "We're in favor of having a conversation about how to make this work, but if you mandate the 30 minutes and then talk about how it will work, something is going to end up being eliminated that people will not want to have eliminated."

The bill now awaits debate on the house floor Monday.

If passed, the law would not apply to charter or private schools.

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