N.C. Supreme Court confirms contractual rights of career status teachers

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Raleigh – On Friday, the N.C. Supreme Court filed its decision on a teacher tenure case originating in the 2013 North Carolina General Assembly’s actions to repeal career status of veteran teachers in the state.

Leaders in the General Assembly then claimed repeal was necessary to allow for more efficient dismal of under-performing teachers.

The repeal, passed as part of a budget bill in the 2013 legislative session, retroactively revoked the career status of teachers who had already earned the designation.  The court unanimously concluded “that repeal of the Career Status Law unlawfully infringes upon the contract rights of those teachers who had already achieved career status.”

The Court therefore deemed the repeal unconstitutional, “though only to the extent that the Act retroactively applies to teachers who had attained career status as of 26 July 2013,” the opinion penned by Justice Bob Edmunds said.

Teachers hired on or after the date of the act’s passage, the court determined, have not been deprived of the same contractual rights.  Elimination of career status for those teachers, and going forward, was therefore upheld.

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