A Smarter Teacher Layoff System: How Quality-Based Layoffs Can Help Schools Keep Great Teachers
Moving from quality-blind to quality-based layoffs is integral to today’s education-reform agenda. Yet figuring out how best to pull this off in a productive, teacher-friendly manner has been a whopping challenge. Enter this New Teacher Project (TNTP) brief, which offers a novel method for districts engaging in quality-based layoffs. Based on a survey of 9,000 teachers from two large, urban districts, TNTP presents a “scorecard” of weighted factors that the organization (as well as the teachers it surveyed) believes should be considered in layoff decisions. This scorecard includes teacher performance ratings, classroom-management skills, attendance, and support for extra-curricular activities—along with years with the district. (Conspicuously lacking is credit for graduate credit hours and advanced degrees: Only one-third of surveyed teachers supported including this factor in layoff decisions.) TNTP’s brief offers a method for handling layoffs that is both tangible enough to be implemented and flexible enough to be adapted for district need. The one caveat: While the brief’s workable model for making layoff decisions is an excellent first step, it does not go further to address how teachers’ performance and classroom-management skills should be judged—probably because their surveyed teachers counted principal opinion as the least appropriate factor for making layoff decisions.
A Smarter Teacher Layoff System: How Quality-Based Layoffs Can Help
Schools Keep Great Teachers
The New Teacher Project
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