Florida Governor Rick Scott is expected to sign legislation that would eliminate teacher tenure for teachers hired after July 1 of this year and instead opt for merit pay which will go into effect in 2014.
This is a good first step. The unfortunate aspect to this bill is that it doesn’t eliminate tenure retroactively. I understand there are likely legal issues in doing so, but I can’t think of any other profession which practically gives somebody a job for life. So bad teachers with tenure stay on the payroll unfortunately. One thing that watching Waiting for Superman did for me was to help illustrate how hard it is to fire bad teachers.
Even here in Iowa even without a tenure system it is still very, very difficult to eliminate bad teachers. Jason Glass, Director of the Iowa Department of Education, is supportive of merit pay, but I believe it is very unlikely to see legislation like this go through the Iowa General Assembly anytime soon.