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Campbell Brown Becomes Tenure Reform Advocate
posted by: Alana | July 24, 2014, 01:53 PM   

Former television journalist Campbell Brown has become an articulate voice and recognizable face in the fight for commonsense education reform. Her newest ventures relate to tenure reform in some of the country’s most notorious school systems.

Brown – whose career was so advanced that she was even on the short list to replace Katie Couric as a co-host of the “Today” show – had an epiphany of sorts after encountering chilling stories about the difficulty New York City schools had in firing teachers accused of sexual misconduct. The horrid details were accounted in countless stories about the teacher “rubber rooms.”

She found that because of unreasonable tenure provisions, the New York City teachers’ unions were responsible for delaying action on as many as 128 cases of misconduct over a five year timeframe.

This discovery rocked Brown to the core because it brought to light the question of ‘if these tenure laws are protecting the jobs of 128 sexual criminals…how many more are being protected for merely being ineffective’?

The salacious stories have mounted for years and have done extensive damage to the professionalism of the teaching workforce.

That’s when Brown formed the Parents Transparency Project to highlight the issue of teacher tenure not only for criminal behavior, but also for those who don’t meet performance standards.

While union officials argue that tenure merely protects teachers’ due-process rights, Brown adamantly believes “there’s no reason anyone’s job should become untouchable for the rest of their life”.

In the wake of the recent Supreme Court case Vergara v. California, groups like those lead by Brown are emerging to test outdated policies in other states.

While AAE doesn't support the outright elimination of tenure, members find these cumbersome policies outdated and are embracing accountability measures like never before.

Our member educators are in agreement that the current tenure system is not working and teachers should not be fired solely based on seniority.

Moving forward, AAE is happy to support a new system that properly honors teachers as professionals. Designing a system that balances the needs of students with the rights of teachers is paramount.

Do you think that eliminating teacher tenure would infringe on the rights of teachers? Is there a system that could work for all stakeholders?
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written by Karon, Arkansas, July 26, 2014

Tenure does not make our profession better, it only ensures a job for bad teaching. No criminal act should take second place to tenure. Rights of teachers are no more important than the rights of students.

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