House moves forward on bipartisan education reform

Posted April 16, 2013

State House lawmakers could vote this week on a sweeping overhaul of the state's teacher tenure system. 

The House Education Committee gave unanimous approval Tuesday to House Bill 719.

The measure would revamp the state's teacher tenure system, shifting it to a probationary/non-probationary system. Sponsors Reps. Bryan Holloway, R-Stokes, and Rick Glazier, D- Cumberland, say it's modeled on a Colorado system that has shown success.

Instead of achieving career status after four years, teachers would be considered "non-probationary," a protected status. But maintaining that status would depend on yearly observation evaluations. 

If a teacher receives two years in a row of negative evaluations, he or she would become probationary and would be able to be fired at will. 

"This establishes a performance model," Holloway said. "They can be removed, or if the school system decides to allow them to continue on, they can be restored to non-probationary status with two years of positive observations."

The proposal would also create a stakeholders' board, appointed by lawmakers, tasked with addressing compensation issues such as base and merit pay. The board, which would include parents, teachers and administrators, would be asked to submit a plan for lawmakers' approval next year. 

"It’s a tough concept. It’s a tough plan to implement. I think the most important thing is to have buy-in," Holloway said.

The bill would also direct the state Department of Public Instruction to design a program to allow students to earn educational credit for "real-time experiences" like clerkships and internships, Glazier said.

The proposal would also increase the number of professional development credits teachers are required to get from 7.5 to 10 per cycle and strengthen requirements for School Improvement Plans.  

"This is one of the best looks at the major issues in a real way that will strengthen public education, not hurt public education," said Glazier.

The bipartisan bill could be on the House floor for a vote as soon as Wednesday.  

The House proposal differs starkly from a competing plan backed by Senate President Pro Tem Phil Berger. That proposal, Senate Bill 361, has been approved by the Senate Education Committee and is expected to pass the full Senate soon.


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  • Mustange Apr 17, 2013

    Teachers if you can you better retire and soon if you can , run and run fast get it while you can !

  • Mustange Apr 17, 2013

    (Sponsors Reps. Bryan Holloway, R-Stokes, and Rick Glazier, D- Cumberland) write these names down and be sure to vote these never been in a class room looks good on paper dum dums out !!

  • Mustange Apr 17, 2013

    (Tag it how you like, but the free rides are over) This statement comes from someone who has never been in a class room before. And NC has never seen what it would be like if these teachers came together (all of thim) and walked out and tell parents to home school thim yourself their your kids !! All teachers walk out for 6 months heads would roll then for sure. Lets face it teachers cant be teaching for the money look at there pay. I would love to see those that think teaching is a free ride come jump on and lets go ride sometime in a class room in fact you pick one and go visit it for one week then come back and tell all of us how your ride was !!!!

  • bill0 Apr 17, 2013

    "Tag it how you like, but the free rides are over."

    It's really interesting that the quasi-conservative position is that professionals who work every day are getting a "free ride".

    There seems to be a misunderstanding about what tenure is.

    Teachers without "tenure" can be fired at any time without reason. They work on 1 year contracts and the school system can decide not to renew for the next year.

    Teachers with "tenure" can be fired at any time for a valid reason. The principal can't just say "I don't like you, so you are out".

    I doubt that many of the conservatives have really thought this through. Most school admins tilt to the left. Do you really want to give them unlimited ability to dismiss teachers without cause? If an old school teacher doesn't follow every new teaching fad, they can get the boot? Speaking out against the latest diversity plan, you are gone? Same goes for a liberal teacher in a conservative county. Just not a good idea.

  • ctrautman Apr 17, 2013

    I predict a severe shortage of teachers in the very near future. As teachers retire or choose a different career, there will not be enough young people who want to become teachers under these conditions, especially when they can work a lot less for a lot more money in other careers. The problem with education in the U.S. has never been the quality of the teachers or the quality of the schools, it's the quality of the parents.

  • WralCensorsAreBias Apr 17, 2013

    "This is nothing more than a way to fire teachers before they reach retirement plain and simple."

    Tag it how you like, but the free rides are over.

  • Mustange Apr 16, 2013

    This is their way of keeping a tap on the teacher retirement plan. They dont have the so called revenue in place to pay all the upcoming retirees so they do away with tenure and let the weeding out begin. SHAME ON THIM Vote these people out!!

  • com_mon_sents Apr 16, 2013

    "This is nothing more than a way to fire teachers before they reach retirement plain and simple."

    Mustange, I do believe you are on to something. This is something to weed out the teachers that have made this their career and it will be cheaper to get rid of the old and replace them will new "cheaply" paid teachers.
    I don't know what I am going to do? I wish I had something to fall back on. I have never felt more frustrated and hopeless in my life. I never thought I'd see teachers in this shape. All of this talk and negative feedback and attacks are taking its toll on my coworkers and myself included. I am tired of being blamed for everything that is wrong with education. Our leaders don't care, the county and state dept. set these unrealistic expectations, and our administrations at school are simply puppets for central office. Teachers are on their own this day and time and no one is in our corner helping us. You expect us to be God, but treat us like dirt. SO WRONG!!!!!

  • ratracehwy64 Apr 16, 2013

    Bad administration, too much paper work, political correctness, ever changing EOG's, 1% pay raises...46th in country, long hours...constant negativity...TIME to UNIONIZE...
    No clue by politicians...they have never taught in a classroom!!! NC teaching stinks...worse than being an Basic training recruit in the Army...not treated as professionals...no union, no voice....

  • Plenty Coups Apr 16, 2013

    rationality-"SouthernPackerFan, you can fire legislators. They are called elections."

    Not so easy with gerrymandering and voter suppression laws. A special form of "tenure" for General Assembly members.