teachers and the law

discipline
In employment law, disciplinary action is a process for dealing with job-related behavior that does not meet expected and communicated performance standards. The primary purpose for discipline is to assist the employee to understand that a performance problem or opportunity for improvement exists. The process features efforts to provide feedback to the employee so he or she can correct the problem. The goal of discipline is to improve employee performance. Discipline must not be used for discriminatory purposes or with defaming methods.

Some methods of disciplinary action may have an employer:

* Verbally reprimand the employee for poor performance.
* Provide a written verbal warning in the employee’s file, in an effort to improve employee performance.
* Provide an escalating number of days in which the employee is suspended from work.
* End the employment of an individual who refuses to improve.

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dismissal
Requires notic and a hearing – due process. Grounds for dismissal of tenured or contracted teacher conform to state law & may include nonperformance of duty, incompetency, insubordination, conviction of crimes involving moral turpitude, violation of contract provisions or local rules and regulations, failure to comply with reasonable orders, revocation of teaching certificate.
letter of reprimand
progressive discipline – after written warning and due process time frame. Must allow employee to write a response and attach it.
liberty interest
liberty right to a good reputation so any action that would stigmatize a teacher interferes with this liberty interest
moral turpitude
The precise definition of a crime that involves moral turpitude isn’t always clear, but the following crimes are always considered crimes of moral turpitude:

* murder;
* voluntary manslaughter;
* rape;
* statutory rape;
* domestic violence;
* prostitution;
* fraud and crimes where fraud is an element
* all theft offenses (but see receipt of stolen property below);
* blackmail;
* malicious destruction of property;
* arson;
* alien smuggling;
* harboring a fugitive;
* bribery;
* perjury

non-renewal
non-tenured teachers do not need to be given reasons for non-renewal. Any statement of reason for non-renewal could result in teacher requesting a due process hearing.
oral warning/conference
1st step in progressive discipline process – keep in your files
probationary status
Employee w/in the first 2 years of continual emloyment, 3/15 notice, can be “non-renewed” without specific reasons or notice.
progressive discipline
Progressive discipline is a system of increasingly harsh penalties for each time someone is disciplined for work-rule violations. Typically the progression is from oral warnings to written warnings to suspension and, finally, to termination. is a formative process, observe strenghths and weaknesses
property interest
property right of a teacher concerns the expectation of employment so any action that would alter this expectation would interfere with this property interest
reduction in force
RIF – 39 mo employment rights. Budget, reduction in student population allows the school to terminate teacher contracts with adequate notice and respect to seniority
suspension with pay
After unsatisfactory eval. while investigating
tenure
“permanent” employee status by Wisconsin law after 4 years of continual employment, 2 years in California. to dismiss, ed code – must give notiec. cite charges, have hearing, good cause
unsatisfactory evaluation
STULL Act, after letter of reprimand and employee response
written warning
2nd step in progrssive discipline – deliver persnally and keep in your records (not employee file for 1st written warning.)

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