Landmark California teacher case enters next phase

As reported by the Sacramento Bee:

A court case with the potential to upend how California hires and fires teachers enters a new phase today.

The initial ruling in Vergara v California dealt a direct challenge to the state’s educational status quo. It deemed unconstitutional laws that govern when teachers get tenure, dictate how they are fired, and mandate that rookie teachers go first in times of budget-driven layoffs. It handed education reformers a major victory in a national fight over teacher employment, all the more significant because it happened in California, a state where the California Teachers Association holds significant sway in the Capitol and lawmakers reject the types of changes at stake.

Oral arguments on the appeal happen today at the Second District Court of Appeal in Los Angeles. In the state’s corner is the CTA, which has assailed the lower court ruling and joined California in filing an appeal. They’ll share oral argument time with the state today; their national teachers union brethren have weighed in, too. The plaintiffs have high-power attorney Theodore Boutrous, Jr., who helped argue the successful challenge to Proposition 8 and is representing Apple in its clash with the feds. …

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