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Education news and notes from Tampa Bay and Florida

Pasco third-year teachers to get continuing contracts, board says

Florida lawmakers made it clear during session: Continuing contracts for teachers are a thing of the past.

They even eliminated the law that allowed first-, second- and third-year teachers to get one.

Before that law change takes effect on July 1, though, the Pasco County School Board plans to grant the longer-term contracts to its third-year teachers who are in line for them.

"That's the ethical thing to do," board member Alison Crumbley said.

It's also the district's obligation, said Lynne Webb, president of the United School Employees of Pasco.

Webb stressed that the third-year teachers who were not notified of dismissal by April 1 have a right to that contract and its benefits. Then when layoffs come, they will have more job protections than if they had been let go from an annual contract.

"We've been pushing that," Webb said. "They can't escape reappointing them."

Superintendent Heather Fiorentino told the board that some third-year teachers would be laid off. But she expected to have all the contracts completed by June.

She said she first- and second-year teachers as a group might sue the Legislature over having the promise of a professional services contract taken away, and that she hoped Pasco would not be part of any such suit. 

[Last modified: Wednesday, May 11, 2011 1:39pm]

    

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