Teacher Council Meetings | One Of The Most Important Councils In The Church

Here’s the quick lowdown on the who, what, when, where, why and how of the teacher council meetings:

Who:

All teachers in both Sunday School and in each auxiliary should attend. The Ward Sunday School president or member of the Sunday School presidency should lead out and run the meeting efficiently. There should be a member of the ward council and it would be nice to have a member of the bishopric present.

What:

There is a curriculum associated with what should be talked about in teacher council meetings. It’s a manual named, “Teaching in the Savior’s Way”. You can get the manual on your gospel library app or by visiting; 

https://www.lds.org/manual/teaching-in-the-saviors-way?lang=eng&CID=TSWM1-TSW

When:

There are to be two meetings held per month. This is to accommodate those that teach during Sunday School, and those that teach during auxiliary 3rd hour meetings and primary. Held during 2nd and 3rd hours to accommodate teachers schedules and not require them to get a sub or miss their classes.These meetings should be scheduled under the direction of the ward council and bishopric and announced consistently. A member of the Sunday school presidency should strive to ensure that the teachers that need to attend are actually attending and not spending the time in the halls chalking it up as a “free week.” 

The goal will be to make this meeting something that teachers will look forward to attending. 

Where:

At the church of course. Rooms defined by bishopric.

When:

Held during 2nd and 3rd hours to accommodate teachers schedules and not require them to get a sub or miss their classes.

Why:

The best and most official position on why teacher council meetings are being held is probably given by Elder Holland and found here – 

https://www.lds.org/callings/teachers?lang=eng

Watch the first 5 videos to get the general idea. They’re about 3-5 minutes a piece. 

You can also check them out here:

It helps to understand why these councils are being organized at this time. It’s not enough to say that this is just another effort to increase gospel understanding. Apostles, prophets, and church programs have been doing that since the beginning. In my opinion, these special councils were built with a latter day purpose. That purpose is to help teachers have a greater and more accurate understanding of church history and doctrine and then communicate that message effectively to youth and adults. 

Elder Ballard gave this talk to CES teachers that I find incredibly useful in the context of the “why” behind why these teacher council meetings have come to pass. I believe this talk will go down as one of the all time greats as it pertains to taking the Church into the very last days. 

It’s to ensure that teachers are equipped with the proper tools to be able to “inoculate” the youth of the church who are growing up in the most transparent of times. It’s also to give those teachers who have received a call to teach a class, and that may have limited knowledge of the gospel, an ongoing opportunity to discuss some of their questions and concerns with others in the ward. 

How:

It’s actually pretty simple given the amazing material that has been provided by the Church. You don’t need to cover a lesson but your discussion should stay focused and beneficial for everyone. The person leading the discussion will be the key to the success of these councils. 

Help others remember that they’re not meetings. They’re councils.  

  1. Start with a prayer. 
  2. Discussion leader invites teachers to share experiences. 
  3. A discussion principle is brought up from the Teaching the Savior’s Way Manual based on the needs of the teachers. 
  4. Close on time. 
  5. Leaders should pay particular attention to the needs of individuals in the class in order to have one on one discussions after class if needed. 

These teacher councils are going to be critical to retention in the church. Teachers are they who ultimately fortify and strengthen the testimony of the members of the church. If the teachers are not rock solid…the students are going to leave church on Sunday with an empty spiritual stomach.


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  • Ben Arnold

    It makes sense when you consider the fact that it’s the teachers who see the members more than anybody else in the church besides hopefully the home teachers and visiting teachers. The teachers are the leader’s most direct link to each individual member. That’s another reason why attending church is so vital. It’s truly a safe harbor in an individual’s life. The benefits far outweigh any possible draw backs of membership. Yes, occasionally horrors do occur. My children all learned how to swear, drink, smoke, bite, murder, and steal in Sunday school class from other classmates. But God saves them, He rescues them, keeps them safe, and delivers them home because they follow Him. There’s no other sure ground of safety and success and happiness than that. And the one place where you learn to follow Him is there.