The North Carolina Court of Appeals says the state can't force veteran teachers to give up career status, also known as tenure.
The court sided with educators, saying that a law that would take away job protections for veteran teachers is unconstitutional, and is unfair to those most responsible for educating North Carolina's children.
Ann Petijean is a first grade teacher and president of the Forsyth County Association of Educators. She says the ruling is a victory for teachers across the state, but she's concerned that it doesn't apply to everyone.
“It only protects those of us that already have it and it took away that option for teachers that don't have it,” says Petijean. “It's just another reason fabulous teachers here in North Carolina are looking elsewhere since every state around us has some form of career status.”
North Carolina public school teachers are eligible for career status after four years. It gives them rights to continue contracts and due process protections from arbitrary or unjustified dismissals.
But two years ago, lawmakers decided to move away from that process, saying that it enabled bad teachers to stay in the system.
The appeals court's opinion affirms a lower court ruling.
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