2011 Identifying Effective Teachers Policy
The state should require that tenure decisions are based on evidence of teacher effectiveness.
New Jersey does not connect tenure decisions to evidence of teacher effectiveness.
Teachers in New Jersey are awarded tenure automatically after a three-year probationary period, absent an additional process that evaluates cumulative evidence of teacher effectiveness.
In his education reform package, the Governor of New Jersey has unveiled his proposed tenure policy, which includes granting tenure to teachers who receive the two highest ratings—highly effective and effective—three years in a row on the teacher evaluation system. Those rated partially effective for two years or ineffective for one year could lose their jobs.
New Jersey Statute 18A:28-5 "The Christie Reform Agenda" http://www.state.nj.us/education/reform/
End the automatic awarding of tenure.
The decision to grant tenure should be a deliberate one, based on consideration of a teacher's commitment and actual evidence of classroom effectiveness.
Ensure evidence of effectiveness is the preponderant criterion in tenure decisions.
New Jersey should make evidence of effectiveness, rather than the number of years in the classroom, the most significant factor when determining this leap in professional standing.
Articulate a process that local districts must administer when deciding which teachers get tenure.
New Jersey should require a clear process, such as a hearing, to ensure that the local district reviews a teacher's performance before making a determination regarding tenure.
Require a longer probationary period.
New Jersey should extend its probationary period, ideally to five years. This would allow for an adequate collection of sufficient data that reflect teacher performance.
New Jersey recognized the factual accuracy of this analysis.