2011 Identifying Effective Teachers Policy
The state should require that tenure decisions are based on evidence of teacher effectiveness.
South Dakota does not connect tenure decisions to evidence of teacher effectiveness.
Teachers in South Dakota are awarded tenure automatically after a three-year probationary period, absent an additional process that evaluates cumulative evidence of teacher effectiveness.
South Dakota Statute 13-43-6.3
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.
South Dakota 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.
South Dakota 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.
South Dakota should extend its probationary period, ideally to five years. This would allow for an adequate collection of sufficient data that reflect teacher performance.
South Dakota recognized the factual accuracy of this analysis.