Education Commission of the States has researched teacher tenure / continuing contract policies in all states to provide this comprehensive resource. Click on the questions below for 50-state comparisons showing how all states approach specific policies. Or, choose to view a specific state’s approach by going to the individual state profiles page.
- Florida, North Carolina, Kansas and Idaho have chosen to repeal tenure outright, phase out tenure or remove due process provisions, though Idaho’s effort to abolish tenure was reversed by its voters.
- Sixteen states use teachers’ performance ratings as a component of decisions to grant tenure.
- Seven states require districts to return teachers to probationary status if their performance is rated unsatisfactory.
- Instead of making lay-off decisions on the basis of tenure status or seniority, 11 states require that teacher performance be the primary consideration. Another state, Washington, adds this requirement in 2015-16. Ten states explicitly prohibit the use of tenure status or seniority.
- Requirements for earning nonprobationary status
- Notification of nonrenewal and hearing
- Appeal forum
- Other continuing contract provisions forum
- Reasons for dismissal
- Reduction in force
- Last known revision
- Recent state legislation on teacher tenure
- Teacher performance plays growing role in employment decisions
- A closer look: Teacher evaluations and reduction-in-force policies
- A closer look: Teacher evaluations and tenure decisions
PUBLISHED: May 1, 2014
RESOURCE TYPE: 50-State Comparison