Judge Rules State Can't Strip Veteran Teachers Of Tenure

May 16, 2014

A judge has ruled state lawmakers can’t take away the job protections that go along with tenure for school teachers. 

The ruling only applies to teachers who already have tenure. Lawmakers passed a bill last year that began phasing out tenure for these teachers by 2018. 

The North Carolina Association of Educators sued the state saying the law is unconstitutional because it involves breaking contracts with no substantial reason or compensation for it.  

“As the court described it, by our constitution it is the unconstitutional taking of something that someone had earned and it was an impairment on the contract that teachers had with their local board of education,” says Ann McColl, an attorney with the teacher’s group.

Superior Court Judge Robert Hobgood said veteran teachers have an established right to a layer of review beyond school administrators when they face firing. North Carolina teachers have had these protections for more than forty years.