This school district tops the nation for teacher planning time

Donna St George:

the nation’s schoolteachers get a lot more time for planning lessons than others. A new analysis found that elementary school teachers in Montgomery County, Md., top the list, getting more planning time than their counterparts in 147 large U.S. school districts.

They get seven hours a week — an average of 84 minutes a day — for planning lesson content, a critical aspect of teaching, according to an examination of teacher contracts and schools district policies released Tuesday by the National Council on Teacher Quality (NCTQ).

“To my view, it’s a sign of school districts putting the emphasis on the right things, that teachers need time to not only plan their own lessons but more importantly the opportunity to work with other teachers,” said Kate Walsh, president of the NCTQ, a nonprofit advocacy and research group that specializes in teacher evaluation and teacher workforce policies.