A plan to overhaul teacher tenure, the school calendar and school assessment continues to evolve in the Senate as more questions and potential pitfalls emerge upon examination.
Senate leader Phil Berger presented the newest version of his legislation Tuesday in the Senate Education Committee, which approved it by voice vote roughly along party lines. The amended language retreats on the elimination of teacher tenure by allowing school systems to give educators with more than three years experience a contract up to four years. The measure -- Senate bill 795 -- also adds five days to the school calendar but a change gives districts the flexibility to meet a minimum number of hours (1,025) instead of days (185).
Teacher groups applauded the first change but still spoke against the broader measure. The latter alteration involving the calendar, however, sparked considerable concerns from Democrats and education groups who did the math: with longer school days, it's possible for districts to reduce the school year to 160 days.