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Teaching QualityTenure or Continuing ContractSelected Research & Readings
 What States Are Doing
 Selected Research & Readings

Rebalancing Teacher Tenure: A Post-Vergara Guide for Policymakers - The Vergara v. California decision regarding tenure affirmed the belief that the balance of laws and regulations had swung so far to teacher job protection that students were suffering. This brief suggests that states take a middle road: lengthen the probationary period, tie tenure to performance, focus hearings on students' interests, stop tolerating cases of egregious misconduct and dismiss without license revocation. (TNTP, September 2014)...

2013 State Teacher Policy Yearbook National Summary - The National Council on Teacher Quality annually tracks and analyzes teacher policies across all states and the District of Columbia. The Yearbook is mammoth 226 pages and can be searched by national findings, by issue, or by state. States get overall grades, based on individual criteria which also are graded. For those interested in particular states, or in comparing states, there is an interactive map. (NCTQ, January 2014)...

Characteristics of Public and Private Elementary and Secondary School Teachers in the United States: Results from the 2011-12 Schools and Staffing Survey, First Look - In the 2011-12 school year, there were about 3,850,100 teachers in elementary and secondary schools, 3,385,200 in public schools and 464,900 in private schools, according to this First Look. The average age of teachers in traditional public schools was 43, teachers in public charters averaged 37, and the average age of private school teachers was 44. All schools had a larger percentage of female teachers (76%) than male (24%). On average, regular full-time teachers spent 51 hours per week on school-related activities, including 31 hours on instruction.(Rebecca Goldring, Lucinda Gray and Amy Bitterman, National Center for Education Statistics Statistics, August 2013)...

Transforming Tenure: Using Value-Added Modeling to Identify Ineffective Teachers - This report examines transforming tenure policies by using value-added modeling (VAM) to identify ineffective teachers. The author analyzed data from Florida public schools and found that VAM scores of third year teachers predict fifth year success. The report provides recommendations for how VAM can most effectively be used in tenure reform. (CSLL, September 2012)...

Recent Teacher Policy Changes in Tennessee: Achieving and Maintaining Tenure - This brief describes 2011 legislative changes to Tennessee's tenure laws. (Offices of Research and Education Accountability, Tennessee Comptroller of the Treasury, March 2012)...

The Widget Effect: Our National Failure to Acknowledge and Act on Differences in Teacher Effectiveness - This report examines our pervasive and longstanding failure to recognize and respond to variations in the effectiveness of our teachers. At the heart of the matter are teacher evaluation systems which, in practice, tell us little about how one teacher differs from any other, except teachers whose performance is so egregiously poor as to warrant dismissal. This report describes the tendency of school districts to assume classroom effectiveness is the same from teacher to teacher. (Daniel Weisberg, Susan Sexton, Jennifer Mulher and David Keeling, New Teacher Project, 2009)...

Characteristics of Public School Districts in the United States: Results From the 200708 Schools and Staffing Survey - This report presents selected findings from the public school district data file of the 2007-08 Schools and Staffing Survey. Included tables address a multitude of issues, including those around teacher employment and tenure. (Paola Aritomi, Jared Coopersmith and Kerry Gruber, National Center for Education Statistics, June 2009)...

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