Classroom observation allowed for unregistered students of Cosmetology in Lafayette Parish Schools

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The Lafayette Parish School System says its okay to have a person observe a teacher in the classroom even if they’re not a registered student.

The school district says it has a system in place to weed out those who could be a danger to students.

However, there’s a watchdog video blogger who thinks otherwise.  News Ten’s Renee Allen brings us his concerns, new tonight at six.

The Lafayette Parish School System says it’s okay to have a person observe a teacher in the classroom even if they’re not a registered student.

The school district says it has a system in place to weed out those who could be a danger to students.  There’s a watchdog video blogger who’s hearing otherwise.

Robert Burns of Baton Rouge says he’s a former Federal Government Fraud Investigator.  He’s also the founder of the blog Sound Off Louisiana that discusses governmental issues and concerns. 

Burns says he found that at the W.D. & Mary Baker Smith Career Center an adult is being allowed to earn in-class credits toward a cosmetology license.  He questions why?

“I began delving into this matter as a result of some sources who indicated to me that this was going on,” adds Burns.

LPSS Chief Administrative Officer Joe Craig says the adults who have attended class at the center — four of them over four years — were not enrolled as students. Craig says they were there as observers to get credit hours for a cosmetology state license.

“They actually have to go through human resources to get a background check and fingerprinted,” says Craig.
Burns says he’s no professional and only has questions like everyone else.

Burns says the background check and fingerprinting offer some relief that an inappropriate student-adult situation is less likely to happen. Burns sees the alternative as a serious liability issue.

“How enraged are the parents going to be especially of the affected child.  They would be saying who was this and what were they doing on campus in the first place,” notes Burns.

Burns adds there are also questions about whether W.D. has instruction effective enough to offer credit hours for a state license.  “From the sources I spoken with, who are pretty knowledgeable of it, that the school is not even eligible to offer a program that would enable people to get a teaching license,” says Burns.

“Older observers are never let alone with the kids. The teacher is always with the kids,” states Craig

Craig says as a best practice it’s ideal to have substitute teachers who have worked with LPSS — and an observer would fit the bill.When he’s [teacher] absent, then somebody is teaching the class that truly knows cosmetology as opposed to the kids sitting there doing crossword puzzles,” adds Craig.

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