Reductions in Force: Tennessee

Exiting Ineffective Teachers Policy

Goal

The state should require that its school districts consider classroom performance as a factor in determining which teachers are laid off when a reduction in force is necessary.

Nearly meets
Suggested Citation:
National Council on Teacher Quality. (2011). Reductions in Force: Tennessee results. State Teacher Policy Database. [Data set].
Retrieved from: https://www.nctq.org/yearbook/state/TN-Reductions-in-Force-10

Analysis of Tennessee's policies

In Tennessee, new legislation ensures that seniority and tenure status are not the sole factors used by districts to determine which teachers are laid off during reductions in force. In addition, the state's new evaluation system requires that "evaluations shall be a factor in employment decisions, including, but not necessarily limited to, promotion, retention, termination, compensation and the attainment of tenure status." 

Citation

Recommendations for Tennessee

Require that districts consider classroom performance as a factor in determining which teachers are laid off during reductions in force.
While the state's new evaluation system does require evaluation results to factor into employment decisions, the state should consider specifying that a teacher's performance is a factor in layoff decisions to ensure that it is in fact considered.

State response to our analysis

Tennessee was helpful in providing NCTQ with facts that enhanced this analysis.

Research rationale

See National Council on Teacher Quality, "Teacher Layoffs: Rethinking 'Last Hired, First-Fired' Policies." (2010); The New Teacher Project, The Case Against Quality-Blind Teacher Layoffs (2011); Boyd, Donald; Lankford, Hamilton; Loeb, Susanna; and Wyckoff, James, "Teacher Layoffs: An Empirical Illustration of Seniority v. Measures of Effectiveness" The Urban Institute, CALDER (2010);  Goldhaber, Dan and Theobold, Roddy, "Assessing the Determinants and Implications of Teacher Layoffs." Center for Education Data & Research, University of Washington-Bothell (2010); Sepe, Christina and Roza, Marguerite, "The Disproportionate Impact of Seniority-Based Layoffs on Poor, Minority Students." Center on Reinventing Public Education (2010).