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Tenure and NJ

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This is a presentation created for an Advanced School Law class. The goal of the presentation is to provide a primer for NJ educators on the topic of Tenure. A basic history of tenure and summary of …

This is a presentation created for an Advanced School Law class. The goal of the presentation is to provide a primer for NJ educators on the topic of Tenure. A basic history of tenure and summary of the case-law that has shaped it is included.

Published in: Education, Career

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  • 1. “The tenure contract is designed primarily toprovide a measure of security for teachers andto ensure that they are protected from arbitraryand capricious treatment by school authorities.” (Essex, 2012, p. 249)
  • 2. “The tenure contract is designed primarily toprovide a measure of security for teachers andto ensure that they are protected from arbitraryand capricious treatment by school authorities.”“Tenure also is viewed as a means of providinga degree of permanency in the teaching forcefrom which students ultimately benefit.” (Essex, 2012, p. 249)
  • 3. National Education Association (NEA) wasfounded in 1857 as a policy making body Tenure became a topic for discussion in the late 19th Century as conditions in schools continued to deteriorate Low wages No pension benefits No job security Poor air quality Overcrowded classrooms Nepotism and political favoritism for jobs (Coleman et al., 2005)
  • 4. 1800s 1886 – Massachusetts enacts a rudimentary tenure law allowing schools to enter into contracts of longer than one year with teachers. Since then, NEA has considered tenure an integral part of teacher contract agreements (Marshall, Baucom, & Webb, 1998)
  • 5. 1900s New Jersey enacts the first statewide tenure law in the country in 1909. (Schwartz, 2008)
  • 6. 1920s “The Committee of One Hundred on Problems of Tenure reported in 1924 that significant problems involving job instability for teachers were evident throughout the United States. Many had turnover rates higher than 50 percent, while others were as low as 4 percent.” (Marshall, Baucom, & Webb, 1998, p. 302)
  • 7. 1930s NEA conducts research on the effects of tenure Comparison of New Jersey teachers who had tenure law since 1910 and Connecticut teachers who had no tenure and could be dismissed at any time Studies showed that NJ teachers remained as competent as Conn teachers (Coleman et al., 2005)
  • 8. 1940s 1946 – NEA’s Committee on Tenure and Academic Freedom introduced a purpose for tenure To develop due process procedures to support the dismissal of inept teachers To protect competent teachers from dismissal (Marshall, Baucom, & Webb, 1998)
  • 9. 1950s Progress 21 states had adopted a form of statewide tenure 20 others had districts with tenure components in teacher contracts 7 states had no laws on tenure or annual contracts (Marshall, Baucom, & Webb, 1998)
  • 10. 1960s “It was not until the American Federation of Teachers’ successful effort to organize the New York City teachers, and the resulting rise of teacher-union militancy in the 1960s, that collective bargaining and tenure became a prominent part of public school systems.” (Hess & Maranto, 1999, p. 29)
  • 11. Today Georgia, Mississippi, and Texas are the only states with no tenure laws Public debate continues regarding the value of and need for tenure Those opposed believe that tenure simply protects incompetent teachers (Coleman et al., 2005) Click here for a little tenure humor
  • 12. Teaching staff members must:1. hold appropriate certificates “in full force and effect” issued by the State Board of Examiners
  • 13. Teaching staff members must:1. hold appropriate certificates “in full force and effect” issued by the State Board of Examiners2. hold such positions delineated in the tenure statue, or in an otherwise certificated position for the required period, which consists of:
  • 14. (a) Three consecutive calendar years or any shorter period which may be fixed by the employing board for such purpose; or (Schwartz, 2008, p. 3)
  • 15. (a) Three consecutive calendar years or any shorter period which may be fixed by the employing board for such purpose; or(b) three consecutive academic years, together with employment at the beginning of the next succeeding academic years; or (Schwartz, 2008, p. 3)
  • 16. (a) Three consecutive calendar years or any shorter period which may be fixed by the employing board for such purpose; or(b) three consecutive academic years, together with employment at the beginning of the next succeeding academic years; or(c) The equivalent of more than three academic years within a period of any four consecutive academic years. (Schwartz, 2008, p. 3)
  • 17. “No teaching staff member shallacquire tenure unless he is, or untilhe shall become , a citizen of theUnited States.” (N.J.S.A. 18A:28-3)
  • 18. Tenure is intended to protectteaching staff members fromdismissal for“unfounded, flimsy, or politicalreasons.” Zimmerman v.Newark Board of Ed., (1962)
  • 19. Tenure is created by thelegislature and cannot be changed by the courts. It can only bechanged through legislation.Local 195, IFPTE, AFL-CIO v. State of New Jersey, 88 N.J. 393 (1982)
  • 20. Acquisition of tenure is limited only topositions in which the teaching staffmember has served.Nelson v. Old Bridge Board of Ed. (1997) rejectedthe assertion that tenure was transferable to anyposition covered by the same certificate.
  • 21. Tenure may only be achieved throughthe actual passage of time in a positionand not the contractual term. Thus, if acontract is long enough for tenure to beachieved, but the employee is releasedprior to the end of the contract, tenure isNOT achieved. Canfield v. Board of Ed. Of the Borough of Pine Hills 51 N.J. 400 (1968)
  • 22. Part time teachers CAN achievetenure Spiewak v. Board of Ed. Of Rutherford (1982)
  • 23. Leave replacement teachers CANNOTaccrue time toward tenure if the serviceis temporary because the return of theabsent staff member is expected. If theteacher on leave notifies the district thatthey are not returning, the replacementbegins to accrue time toward tenure.Sayreville Ed. Assoc. on behalf of Rucki v. BOE Of the Borough of Sayreville (1984)
  • 24. By May 15th of each year non-tenured staff: must be notified in writing of continuing employment OR must be notified in writing that employment will not be offered N.J.S.A. 18A:27-10
  • 25. Failure to provide such notice is deemed an offer of employment for the succeeding year! N.J.S.A. 18A:27-11 TRANSLATIONIf you forget to send notice of termination to a 3rdyear non-tenured staff member by May 15th, theycan consider it an offer of employment and willgain tenure on the first day of the following schoolyear!
  • 26. Non-tenured staff membersmust be observed andevaluated in theperformance of her or hisduties at least three timesduring each school year .These evaluations musttake place prior to April 30thof each year. N.J.S.A. 18A:27-3.1
  • 27. The probationary period for Non-tenured staffmembers in New Jersey is 3 years.“School boards are provided broad latitude indetermining whether tenure should be granted.During the probationary period, a teacher may benon-renewed at the end of the contract year withoutcause or dismissed during the year with cause.” Essex, 2012, p. 250
  • 28. “Donaldson v. Board of Ed of NorthWildwood 65 N.J. 236 (1974)established the right of a teachingstaff member to have a hearing beforean employing board as to the“reasons” given for the teachers non-renewal.” Schwartz, 2008
  • 29. According to Essex, 2012,“In Sum, non-tenured status involves the following: • No expectation for employment beyond the contracted year • No right to be provided reasons for nonrenewal • No right to due process • No hearing***” (p. 250)***This is only modified for NJ by the Donaldson decision. However, even in aDonaldson hearing, there is no expectation of reinstatement unless it is deemedthat a liberty or property right has been violated.***
  • 30. Tenured Non-tenured Earns property right to the Contract may be non renewed teaching position after it expires during the Earns continued service status probationary period or without May only be dismissed for cause statutory cause May or may not be provided Full due process procedures must reasons for be met nonrenewal, depending on state statutes Is entitled to a formal and fair hearing May or may not be provided a hearing based on state statute Must receive prior notice of intent and grounds for proposed Written notice of nonrenewal dismissal by registered or must be received on or before certified mail the statutory date required by law Failure to meet the statutory date by the school board mayChart excerpted from Essex, 2012, p. 252 result in continued employment
  • 31. Tenured Non-tenured Must be provided information Receives hearing if contract is regarding time, place of cancelled before contract date hearing, with option of public or expires or if required by state law closed hearing Hearing not provided unless Has right to legal counsel stipulated by state law Has right to be provided names Does not have right to appeal of witnesses unless stipulated by state statute Must be provided transcript of May be provided hearing if there the hearing if requested is evidence of a liberty right May appeal decision to higher violation – injury to good name authority or the courts if decision or information communicated is not favorable that affects future employment opportunitiesChart excerpted from Essex, 2012, p. 252
  • 32. “Basis of tenure charges isincapacity, unbecoming conduct or other justcause.Hearing required before Commissioner orperson appointed to act on his behalf.Charges must be signed by the person makingthem.Nothing in the tenure laws may preventreduction in force (RIF).” Schwartz, 2008, p. 17
  • 33. Pro Tenure Con TenureTenure protects Tenure fostersteachers from unfair complacency.firing. Teachers Without thecannot be removed incentive of keepingfor the job, teachers arepersonal, political, o likely to put in ther non-work related minimumreasons.
  • 34. Click either picture above to hear theviews of Randi Weingarten, president ofthe American Federation of Teachers.
  • 35. Pro Tenure Con TenureTenure keeps Tenure makes isdistricts from firing extremely difficultexperienced to get rid ofteachers to hire underperforming orinexperienced and incompetentless expensive ones. teachers.
  • 36. Click the pictures above to hear AndreaMitchell’s report on New York City’s effortsto reform tenure.
  • 37. Pro Tenure Con TenureTenure protects Tenure makesteachers from being seniority the mainfired for teaching factor in teachercontroversial or dismissal ratherunpopular topics. than teacher quality.
  • 38. Click the text or picture above to hearNew Jersey Governor Chris Christie’s viewson teacher tenure.
  • 39. Tenure has a long history in the United States.Tenure laws are intricate and there is a greatdeal of case law that helps us to interpret.
  • 40. It is important to understand the rules of tenurewhether you are a teacher or an administrator.Tenure is a hotly debated issue across thecountry; nowhere more so than in New Jersey.
  • 41. Canfield v. Board of Ed. Of the Borough of Pine Hills, 51 N.J. 400 (1968)Coleman, J., Schroth, S. T., Molinaro, L., & Green, M. (2005). Tenure: An Important Due Process Right or a Hindrance to Change in the Schools? Journal of Personnel Evaluation in Education, 18(3), 219-231. doi: 10.1007/s11092-006-9020-5Donaldson v. Board of Ed of North Wildwood, 65 N.J. 236 (1974)Essex, N. L. (2012). School Law and the Public Schools: A Practical Guide for Educational Leaders (5th ed.). Upper Saddle River, NJ: Pearson Education, Inc.Hess, F. & Maranto, R. A. (1999). Reinventing Tenure. The American School Board Journal 186(5), 28– 31.Local 195, IFPTE, AFL-CIO v. State of New Jersey, 88 N.J. 393 (1982)Marshall, P., Baucom, D., & Webb, A. (1998). Do you have tenure, and do you really want it? The Clearing House, 71(5), 302-304.
  • 42. Nelson v. Old Bridge Board of Ed., 148 N.J. 358 (1997)N.J.S.A. 18ASayreville Ed. Assoc. on behalf of Rucki v. BOE Of the Borough of Sayreville 193 N.J. Super 424 (App. Div. 1984)Schwartz, R. M., (2008). NJPSA Education Law Primer: Tenure & Seniority. New Jersey Principals and Supervisors Association.Spiewak v. Board of Ed. Of Rutherford 90 N.J. 63 (1982)Zimmerman v. Newark Board of Ed. 38 N.J. 65 (1962)