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Teacher contracts are the talk of Tallahassee



It's in the House. It's in the Senate.

Legislation to change the way that teachers are evaluated, paid, contracted, hired and fired are the subject of discussion in both the House Education Committee and the full Senate.

Over in the House committee, members have begun the amendment process. So far just one offering -- one that brings the House measure in line with the Senate version -- has won approval. Other Democrat-sponsored proposals, such as granting three-year contracts to teachers deemed highly effective, have fallen on voice votes, just as they did in the Senate on Wednesday. (Watch the broadcast here.)

In the Senate, an attempt to change the bill by Republican Sen. Thad Altman quickly failed. Then the Senate began debating the full bill. Watch them on the Senate website. It's the only bill on third reading today.

Democratic Sen. Bill Montford, a retired Leon County superintendent, said it was clear the bill will pass, and that many of the pieces in it are needed. Still, he warned, without enough money the new performance pay system could collapse under its own weight.

"We have a lot of work to do," Montford said. "We are building an evaluation system based on end of course exams that we do not have to the extent we need."

Others are speaking about things they would like to see changed to make the needed changes into a good plan. 

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