NC educators oppose law ending job protections

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Submitted: Mon, 10/21/2013 - 5:45pm
Updated: Tue, 10/22/2013 - 12:04am

Associated Press

RALEIGH, NC (AP) — Some public school teachers and school administrators are pushing back against a new North Carolina law that eliminates job protections for educators.

State legislators this summer approved phasing out teacher tenure beginning next year. A new law tells school districts to pick the teachers who rank in the top 25 percent for effectiveness and offer them four-year contracts in exchange for bonuses totaling $5,000.

Brunswick County Schools Superintendent Edward Pruden said Monday the bonuses open the door to lawsuits. He says administrators have no objective way to rank teachers, and those left out of the money could challenge any decisions.

The largest labor association representing the state’s 90,000 teachers is planning to file a lawsuit aiming to reverse the end of tenure rights.

(Copyright 2013 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)


  • TLDap says:

    I am not a teacher, I do however work in the education field and the hostile and downright stupid replies I see here regarding the teaching profession both infuriate and depress me. Unless you have worked in the field, unless you have spent countless hours dealing with disrespectful spoiled brats, hours and hours of paperwork unrelated to lesson plans and teaching, meeting with parents who expect you to do the parenting they are either not capable of doing or simply refuse to do, working (required) volunteer time for PTO meetings, ballgames, music, art or theater events, and spending money out of your pocket for supplies, you simply have no clue what goes on in the teaching profession. What is worse, your negative and uninformed opinion of teachers is passed on to your children who now think they don’t have to do any work and can get away with insolent classroom behavior and then blame the teachers when they don’t get the education YOU expect them to get. I dare anyone giving these negative comments to take and pass both the general knowledge and core praxis tests and spend even a week in a classroom with children that range from the brilliant to the barely functional; spoiled rich to those who are so poor they only receive a hot meal with their school lunch; and especially, deal with the parents that treat you worse than they do a McDonalds’ counter employee and see if you can survive on about $12.00 for 55+ hours a week you put in. Sorry people, your ignorance is showing!

  • Taylor's best says:

    Schools Superintendent says “administrators have no objective way to rank teachers.” There in it’s self lays the problem…. no one knows what each teacher is doing or not doing. Aim higher to correct the school system problems. If no one “the supper or his/her boss” can rank a teacher, then no one can fix the problem.

  • Nonicomb says:

    First, all teachers (union or not) EARN tenure. They do this by performing at or above standard for three consecutive years at the same school.

    Second, tenure does not completely guarantee that they will keep that job. Just because a teacher has attained tenure, it does not mean they are able to slack off. They still have very detailed mid- and end-of-year assessments. Anyone who is less than proficient in any of the areas is placed on a strict teaching plan that they must adhere to for the following year. If at any time they fall below the specific expectations of that plan, it is noted and administration must make appropriate decisions regarding the future of that teacher’s employment. Tenure only makes it a bit more difficult for a teacher to be dismissed.

    Last, teachers do not get bonuses as it is. In fact, NC teachers have only received ONE raise (1.2 percent) in the past six years. However, due to changes in benefits (vision and dental insurance are no longer part of the benefits package and must be purchased separately by the teacher, and the general health plan now has a monthly premium that must be paid) and other factors, many teachers now make LESS than they did 6 years ago.

    I have to ask why there is so much outrage and animosity towards professional educators who struggle every day to help your children create a future for themselves. If you only knew how many UNPAID HOURS teachers spend after school supporting your children in extra-curricular activities which take away from the time they could/should be home with their own children, and how much of THEIR OWN MONEY from their meager paychecks they use to buy much-needed supplies for their students and classrooms while struggling to make a car payment so their car doesn’t get repossessed, you perhaps wouldn’t complain so much.

    Perhaps you are really angry at yourself because you feel less than satisfied with your current occupation, and you wish for everyone else to be as miserable as you. Misery loves company, haven’t you heard? So go ahead and continue to blame teachers for everything that is wrong with children these days. Keep taking more and more away from them. Make them do more paperwork and jump through more hoops, just so you can be satisfied that they are working hard enough to earn those “free summer vacations” (by the way, teachers are 10-month employees of the state, so whatever they are “paid” over the summer comes from money that was taken out of their paycheck every month preceding summer break). Is that what you want? Do you really want to make all teachers just as miserable as you? Great idea. Sounds like JUST the type of people I want around MY children all day.

    Has a teacher ever gone to your boss or to the paper demanding that YOU not get a raise or bonus? Where do you work? I want to be the first one!

  • tke1 says:

    “Assessments”????? The superintendent just said he has no objective way of ranking teachers. If these assessments are so tough and rigid, why can’t they be used to rank the teachers. The arrogance of the educating elite is showing through. Just because they say something, the ignorant public is supposed to accept it as the gospel.

  • guest7969 says:

    “However, due to changes in benefits (vision and dental insurance are no longer part of the benefits package and must be purchased separately by the teacher, and the general health plan now has a monthly premium that must be paid) and other factors, many teachers now make LESS than they did 6 years ago.”


  • Erlkoenig says:

    I am sick of hearing about poor, over-worked, under-paid teachers. There are plenty of unemployed out there who would gladly take your new situation and summers off.

    Now, critique my writing like a condescending, over-paid, under-worked, (summers off), bureaucrat.

  • beach guy says:

    When you work at a public job you put yourself out there in the public eye and part of your job is to suffer the slings and arrows of the public. When you work for a private job you suffer the slings and arrows of your employer and that is between you and them since they are the ones signing your pay check.
    I would suggest that any teacher in NC that wants to be treated like everyone else to turn in their union card and compete with all the qualified persons to do your job as the rest of us have all of our adult lives

  • 1492 says:

    In the private sector (AKA “The real world”) ,performing at or above standard for three consecutive years gives you the right to keep your job, not guarantee it for life.

    To say that any employee of any organization can EARN the right to a job for life simply by doing his or her job satisfactorily for three years is just total nonsense.

    The “real world” already knows that. Time for you to come back from dreamland.

  • Guest2020 says:

    Teachers are no better than anyone else. If they do a poor job, then they should not be able to keep their jobs. The really good teachers should not be worried about the new laws.

    My husband has worked in the government system and went without raises most of the time he was employed. He also worked a lot of overtime without compensation. His insurance was also affected in that vision was not covered. I’m not sure about dental. Unfortunately, he has lost two jobs in the past three years do to budget cuts. The most recent was this past summer.

    You should be thankful for what you have instead of whining about what you don’t have. You are so much better off than a majority of the population.

    When my daughter graduated last year, the principal contributed the graduates’ success to the faculty and staff. He gave no credit to the students. My child graduated with honors and that had a whole lot more to do with her hard work and determination than with the teachers. She had a handful of teachers who were good at their jobs, but most of them have no business teaching.

    Also, most of the teachers we have encountered through our daughters’ educations have done little to nothing to help them prepare for their future. They are too busy teaching to the test in order to boost scores. It really is atrocious what little the kids today are taught as compared to what I learned in school. We had achievement tests in October and the only preparation we were given was the admonition to get plenty of sleep and we sharpened our pencils before the test began. We made out very well without the year long preparation.

  • Guest2020 says:

    You are wrong. Taken with the context of the thread, any reasonable person would be able to deduce that I was referring to the grammatical and spelling errors as well as the typos. Unlike you, I realize that not everyone is perfect and each of us have our strengths and weaknesses. If you can’t acknowledge that, then you have no business being a teacher.

    Sounds like I fit what bill?

  • GuestMan. says:

    Why are you so violent? Every time someone doesn’t agree with you want to threaten them with physical violence, you tea-bagging ignoramus. It’s not the editor’s fault that you majored in pre-dirt and animal husbandry in high school. You should have paid better attention in English class.

  • beach guy says:

    If you were to speak to anyone the way you spoke to me in person you would get a lesson of a different nature you supercilious jack ass,but I am sure you do not have the intestinal fortitude to do so. So hide behind your computer and and say all the things you wish you had the guts to say in person you pitiful little person.

  • 8844 says:

    How humorously ironic to mock someone for hiding behind their computer … and then imply you would take care of business if they said stuff to you in person … all the while hiding behind your own computer.

  • guesty says:

    The exact same could be said about you since you are doing the same thing.

  • edits says:

    I guess they had a teacher that was tenure and did care how the kids performed. I think teachers should have to take test to show they are still capable of teaching the subjects they are license to teach. The hours they have to get to keep their license is a joke, being they can take classes in basket making and it will count toward their license renewal.

  • Guest2020 says:

    Does your nose bleed up on that high horse of yours? If you were a good teacher, then you would be able to realize that different people have different strengths and weaknesses. Not everyone can be perfect like you.

    I will take the opinion of a person who makes errors over someone who is arrogant and has an overblown sense of self-importance.

  • A teacher says:

    Thanks for discrediting yourself with your last sentence.

    “No, I don’t have an education degree. My IQ makes me overqualified.”

    Sounds like you fit the bill.

  • beach guy says:

    So let me get this strait NC is a right to work state unless you are a teacher in the union?
    That is discrimination and all non union citizens should sue the state for allowing this practice if a teacher can have a guarantee of not losing their job then everyone should have the same protection under the law. Or no one should.

  • Nonicomb says:

    So let me get this strait (straight)(,) NC is a right to work state unless you are a teacher in the union?
    That is discrimination(,) and all non(-)union citizens should sue the state for allowing this practice(.) if (If) a teacher can have a guarantee of not losing their job(,) then everyone should have the same protection under the law. Or no one should. (Technically this last bit isn’t correct either, but this isn’t a formal essay, so I will let it slide. The other issues, however, should be standard knowledge and generally used in any form of written/typed communication. People tend to disregard the ideas/opinions of others when it appears as though they aren’t educated enough to adequately express said ideas/opinions.

  • Guest7969 says:

    is the exact reason why I am glad the Unions aren’t prevalent in this state!

    EASY FIX…NO BONUSES for teachers…THERE!

  • GuestUSMC says:

    The only bad thing is that this idea will not take effect immediately. For way too long, low performing educators have continued to “teach” simply because there was no way to get rid of them. Teaching is one of the most important professions there is and there needs to be some way to get rid of the bad ones. We owe this to the kids and taxpayers. Having to sign a renewable contract that runs out in a few years, as well as bonuses to strive for sounds like a way to wake some of these lower performers up. As for the other officials who say there is no way to find out who is performing well and who is not, I say to you that is your job, that’s what you get paid to do. Start doing it or you may be in the unemployment line with some of your pals.

  • 1234543 says:

    if a teacher was in civilian life and working if she wasn’t performing, she’d have a pink slip, but a lot of teachers slip thru the cracks, in my years of education I can only remember 3 teachers that could teach and left an impression on their students, that’s pretty miserable. And another thing, teachers used to not brainwash students with political motives, they do now.

  • TLDap says:

    WOW, I guess you must have had a couple decent teachers, you managed to compose and write this comment. And it is obvious you have no idea what a teacher goes through daily in a classroom for less pay than a lot of non college graduates make.

  • Guest2020 says:

    I found this in Psychology Today as well as other sources. It doesn’t take much effort to find this information. I have seen some sources that say the average IQ of an education major is 110. The lowest IQ was cited for social workers with an average of 103. I have also read reports that say that SAT scores can be translated into IQ. And based on SAT scores, the average IQ of an education major is 99.3. No, I don’t have an education degree. My IQ makes me overqualified.

  • Nonicomb says:

    The unemployed you spoke of would need to have a teaching degree. It isn’t very difficult to find a job teaching these days. Who wants to be a teacher when everyone treats you like a tax collector or repo man?

    No need for me to critique your writing. Good job.

  • Guest2020 says:

    Since a degree in education is one of the easiest to obtain, I suggest that the unemployed look into what it takes to get a teaching certificate.

    Teachers are not the only employees out there who get the brunt of public criticism. If you don’t like it then find a different job. And if teachers, as a whole, were doing a good job, then there would be no need for the public to criticize.

  • College Student says:

    I’m in my senior year of college, and I am majoring in education. I’m just going to say that my work load is about twice the size of my roommates and friends’ workloads. I may not have to do complicated equations, but anyone that has not been under this pressure for the past four years would have a really hard time. Plus, depending on your subject area, you have to take plenty of courses out of the college of education that relate to that subject. It is not an easy degree; I can promise you that.

  • Guest2020 says:

    What are your roommates taking? Basket weaving? It is a known fact that education majors tend to have lower IQ’s than most other majors. When students cannot hack the other majors they have chosen they tend to change to an education major because it is one of the easiest to obtain.

  • College Student says:

    Well, that’s offensive. Where did you find this, “known fact?” They’re in business and math. No college degree is easy to obtain. I know quite a few people that transferred over, and only one told me its because they thought the work of their former major was too hard. The other reasons were because they wanted to teach, or realized that they just hated chemistry and it wasn’t interesting, or that it wasn’t what they wanted to do with their lives. Have you received your education degree?

  • Nonicomb says:

    Please, refer back to my second paragraph. NO TEACHER is guaranteed a job for LIFE.

    I have worked many jobs “in the real world” (as if teachers are somehow exempt from reality, I suppose?) and know that when it comes to minor infractions employers will generally give you a verbal and/or written warning before just firing you on the spot. That warning may or may not be documented in the employees file. This is the SAME for teachers.

  • 1492 says:

    I readily admit that my eyes glazed over a bit attempting to read paragraphs four and five. You know, the ones that said “animosity towards professional educators who struggle every day”, bla, bla, bla, and “really angry at yourself because you feel less than satisfied with your current occupation”, bla, bla, bla and …. Oh geez, my eyes are glazing over again!

    I especially focused on the last sentence of the second paragraph. You know, the one that said “Tenure only makes it a bit (that’s a euphemism, right?) more difficult for a teacher to be dismissed” … (let me finish that sentence for you) … THAN IT WOULD BE IN THE REAL WORLD. If that wasn’t the case, you would give up tenure in a heartbeat.

    Also, in the real world: Lots of us are making a lot less, so suck it up and stop your whining.

  • TLDap says:

    You sound like an uneducated, under-employed individual looking for a handout. WHAAAAA! Teachers earn more than many you say? Oh really, they do earn more than those without a college education, perhaps, but not compared other professional and educated professions. I am sorry you seem to be of the mentality of those working for minimum wage with only a high school degree or GED, but maybe if you had $70,000 in college loans to repay on a salary that comes out to not much more than minimum wage when you figure the hours put in, then maybe you could understand, but obviously that sort of cognitive thinking and understanding is above your “pay-grade.”

  • Patricia C. Thomas says:

    This issue is tough on both sides. On one end, the legislature has to save money and on the other end, the teachers have to have job security in order to effectively teach children.

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