According to Reuters, a group of nine California students was going to court earlier this month to challenge laws that they say force public schools to retain low performing teachers.
A lawsuit filed by the students seeks to overturn five state statutes that set guidelines for permanent employment, firing and layoff practices for public school teachers. The lawsuit says that the statutes violate the constitutional rights of students by denying them effective teachers.
Among the statutes targeted in the lawsuit is one that requires school administrators to either grant or deny tenure status to teachers after the first 18 months of their employment. The students say that this causes administrators to give permanent employment to potentially problematic teachers.
“We don’t think stripping teachers of their workplace professional rights will help students,” California Federation of Teachers President Joshua Pechthalt told Reuters about the lawsuit, while dismissing the claims.
California public school students, from elementary to high school-age, filed the lawsuit in May 2012 against Governor Jerry Brown, the California Department of Education, Superintendent Tom Torlakson and the California Board of Education.
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These statutes exist to protect teachers from issues like wrongful termination, age discrimination and other forms of employment discrimination. Hopefully, these statutes will remain in place to protect the teachers and the court will uphold their professional rights.
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Kesluk, Silverstein & Jacob– Los Angeles employment attorneys