Date: October 15, 2002

Contact: Kim Sharpe, 303-299-3680


FAX: 303-296-8332

ECS Web Site:


Southeastern States To Allow Teachers

To Keep Benefits If They Move


Denver, CO — Alabama, Arkansas, Georgia, Kentucky, Louisiana, Mississippi, North Carolina, South Carolina and Tennessee are taking part in a new effort to allow teachers to take jobs in other districts or states without losing seniority, pension and other benefits.


Through the Southeast Center for Teaching Quality (SECTQ), state leaders will work together to ensure teachers have the same rights as employees in other fields. Currently, teachers lose benefits if they take a job in another school district or state. The effort will be funded through a $10,000 grant from the Education Commission of the States (ECS).


“The teaching profession is not a free-market industry and often is very anti-family,” said Charles Coble, executive director, ECS Teaching Quality Policy Center. “Teachers usually cannot transfer from one district to another, let alone from one state to another, without giving up their seniority and all accumulated pension. This creates an unfair dilemma when a teacher’s spouse gets transferred to another state, because chances are good that that teacher will have to take additional coursework and more credentialing tests to be eligible for work in the new state. Additionally, if they do take a job, all previous teaching experience isn’t accounted for, and they have to start at the bottom and work their way up again.”


SECTQ will use grant monies to collect data on the number of teachers that currently move between districts and states within the region, and help the nine states develop a teacher mobility plan.


Funding for the grant came from the Ford Foundation and the Carnegie Corporation of New York.




The Education Commission of the States (ECS) is a national, nonprofit organization that helps governors, legislators, state education officials and others identify, develop and implement public policies to improve student learning at all levels. A nonpartisan organization, ECS was formed in 1965 and is located in Denver, Colorado.