Teacher tenure is an arrangement that seeks to protect teachers from dismissal under unjust cases. It requires that a teacher goes through a probation period which in most states is set at three years, after which dismissal can only happen under justifiable reasons (Loeb et al., 2015). Controversy surrounds teacher tenure with proponents and opponents posing varied claims. This article justifies teacher tenure.
Dismissal of teachers would happen on the basis of non-work related issues. Political and tribal favoritisms, race or gender would contribute to firing of teachers prior the institution of teacher tenure. For instance, women would at times be fired for getting pregnant, married or even dressing in pants. Teachers would often be accused of incompetence and fired without any procedure (Loeb et al., 2015). The court therefore ruled that the dismissal of teachers would only happen upon meeting given procedural requirements and that teacher’s contracts would be automatically renewed each consequent year. These case laws provide the basis for supporting teacher tenure. Teacher tenure helps in protecting against discrimination and favoritisms in the retention of teachers. The requirement that a teacher must be given a notice with clear specifications on the charges and accorded significant hearing prior dismissal eliminates any possibility of non-work related accusations (Loeb et al., 2015). The cost accrued in processing a dismissal also helps filter chances of non-meaningful accusations and as a result attract qualified teachers. Another reason for supporting teacher tenure is the fact that it promotes effective learning. The different opinions that people have with regard to how best students should be taught and which elicit unjust claims also have less influence on the dismissal of teachers since they are protected by teacher tenure.
Teacher tenure is a form of social protection that protects teachers against skewed favoritisms and discriminations. It thus prevents firing qualified teachers to hire less qualified teachers. It is the school administration that grants teacher tenure and it is expected that clear procedures are followed to grant tenure to the most qualified. Teacher tenure is therefore an educational reform that should be advocated.
Loeb, S., Miller, L. C., & Wyckoff, J. (2015). Performance screens for school improvement: The case of teacher tenure reform in New York City. Educational researcher, 44(4), 199-212.
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