Dismissal for Poor Performance

Exiting Ineffective Teachers Policy

Dismissal for Poor Performance

The state should articulate that ineffective classroom performance is grounds for dismissal and ensure that the process for terminating ineffective teachers is expedient and fair to all parties.

Best practices

Oklahoma clearly articulates that teacher ineffectiveness in the classroom is grounds for dismissal and has taken steps to ensure that the dismissal process for teachers deemed to be ineffective is expedited. In Oklahoma, teachers facing dismissal have only one opportunity to appeal. 

Suggested Citation:
National Council on Teacher Quality. (2011). Dismissal for Poor Performance national results. State Teacher Policy Database. [Data set].
Retrieved from: https://www.nctq.org/yearbook/national/Dismissal-for-Poor-Performance-10
Best practice 1

State

Meets goal 2

States

Nearly meets goal 6

States

Meets goal in part 8

States

Meets a small part of goal 4

States

Does not meet goal 30

States

Do states articulate that instructional ineffectiveness is adequate grounds for dismissing a teacher?

2011
Figure details

Yes: CO, DE, FL, IL, IN, MA, MI, NY, OK, RI, TN, WY

No : AK, AL, AR, AZ, CA, CT, DC, GA, HI, IA, ID, KS, KY, LA, MD, ME, MN, MO, MS, MT, NC, ND, NE, NH, NJ, NM, NV, OH, OR, PA, SC, SD, TX, UT, VA, VT, WA, WI, WV

Footnotes
AZ: It is left to districts to define "inadequacy of classroom performance."
NV: A teacher reverts to probationary status after two consecutive years of unsatisfactory evaluations, but it is not articulated that ineffectiveness is grounds for dismissal.
VA: Dismissal policy includes dismissal for unsatisfactory evaluations, but the state's evaluation system does not measure teacher effectiveness (see Goal 3-B).
WV: Dismissal policy includes dismissal for unsatisfactory evaluations, but the state's evaluation system does not measure teacher effectiveness (see Goal 3-B).

Are states’ dismissal policies fair and efficient?

2011
Figure details

Yes. State permits dismissal decisions to be appealed once. : FL, LA, OK, WI

Partially. State permits dismissal decisions to be appealed multiple times for teachers dismissed for reasons other than ineffectiveness. : CO, IN, TN

No. State permits all dismissal decisions to be appealed multiple times.: AK, AL, AR, AZ, CA, CT, DE, GA, HI, IA, ID, IL, KS, KY, MA, MD, MI, MN, MO, MS, MT, NC, ND, NH, NJ, NM, NY, OH, OR, PA, RI, SC, SD, TX, VA, WA, WV

No. State has no policy -- or an unclear policy -- regarding dismissal.: DC, ME, NE, NV, UT, VT, WY

Footnotes
IL: The teacher is responsible for the cost of the second appeal.
NV: Though a teacher returns to probationary status after two consecutive unsatisfactory ratings, the state does not articulate clear policy about its appeals process.

Research rationale

One of the greatest shortcomings of teacher performance appraisals has been school systems' unwillingness and inability to differentiate instructional competency. The New Teacher Project, 2009, "The Widget Effect: Our National Failure to Acknowledge and Act on Differences in Teacher Effectiveness" at http://widgeteffect.org/

See NCTQ, State of the States: Trends and Early Lessons on Teacher Evaluation and Effectiveness Policies (2011) as well as studies by The New Teacher Project of human resource and dismissal policies in various districts at: http://www.tntp.org/.

For information on the high cost of teacher dismissals, see Steve Brill, "The Rubber Room," New Yorker, August 31, 2009 at: http://www.newyorker.com/reporting/2009/08/31/090831fa_fact_brill.
 
Also, see Scott Reeder, "The Hidden Costs of Tenure: Why are Failing Teachers Getting a Passing Grade?" Small Newspaper Group, 2005 at:http://www.nctq.org/nctq/research/1135269736359.pdf.

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