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Changes to proposed education bill concerning tenure and termination helps calm fears for teachers

THURSDAY, APRIL 21, 2011 15:07 PM

Education leaders in Montgomery, Alabama recently announced that they are in favor of a bill that would amend teacher tenure, the Montgomery Advertiser reports.

Officials told the news source that area education leaders indicated changes were made to the proposed legislation to ease the fears of teachers. Most notably, the alterations will get rid of the lengthy arbitration process in regards to teacher tenure.

However, the proposal has met resistance from the Alabama Education Association. Officials noted that the bill does not give educators a fair appeals process and fails to protect them against personal and political retaliation. Among the other complaints are termination appeals - fired teachers can appeal the decision of the school board to an outside arbitrator and continue to get paid.

"If we do not have the type of reform this brings to Alabama," Charlotte Meadows, president of the Montgomery County Board of Education, told the news source, "we are not able to give students the best education they deserve."

According to the U.S. Department of Education, there were nearly 13,800 public school districts that contained approximately 99,000 public schools in the 2008-2009 academic year.