Cumberland school board supports repealing tenure law
Posted March 11
Fayetteville, N.C. — The Cumberland County Board of Education unanimously voted Tuesday night to support the repeal of a new law that offers bonuses to top teachers who give up their tenure rights.
Under the law, the current "career status" available to teachers with four or more years on the job will be phased out by 2018 and replaced with a plan that requires local school districts to pick the top 25-percent of teachers who will be offered four-year contracts and bonuses.
Currently, North Carolina teachers who have "career status" can’t be dismissed without a specific due process.
Teachers are paid in part based on seniority – their years on the job. That pay scale is determined by the state legislature. Some local school systems augment the state allotment for teachers in their districts.
The new law eliminates tenure, or career status, by 2018.
Lawmakers asked districts this year to identify their top 25 percent of high-performing teachers and offer each a new four-year contract with a $500 annual salary increase. In exchange, those teachers lose the chance at tenure.
Durham public schools voted last week to join Guilford County in a lawsuit to overturn the law. More than a dozen local school boards across the state have passed resolutions opposing the law, including Wake County.
The North Carolina Association of Educators filed a separate lawsuit against the law in December.
Opponents of the law say cutting tenure and replacing it with a system that only rewards a small percentage of teachers discourages collaboration among educators and undermines public education.
Gov. Pat McCrory said last week that his staff will review the impact of the law between now and the short session in May.