On Top of the News
Sharply Divided Reactions as Vergara Is Reversed; Student Advocates Turn to California’s Supreme Court
The 74 | 4/17/16
Behind the Headline
Script Doctors: A Compelling Play on the Wrong Stage?
Education Next | Fall 2014
Last week, an appeals court in California reversed a lower court ruling in Vergara v. California that had struck down several state laws involving teacher tenure.
The plaintiffs in the case, minority students in California, had argued that California’s teacher tenure system violates the equal protection clause because it protects teachers who are ineffective, and poor and minority students are more likely to be assigned these ineffective teachers.
Matt Szymanski writes of the ruling
In a decision that arrived weeks earlier than expected, the judges wrote: “We reverse the trial court’s decision. Plaintiffs failed to establish that the challenged statutes violate equal protection, primarily because they did not show that the statutes inevitably cause a certain group of students to receive an education inferior to the education received by other students.
“Although the statutes may lead to the hiring and retention of more ineffective teachers than a hypothetical alternative system would, the statutes do not address the assignment of teachers; instead, administrators—not the statutes—ultimately determine where teachers within a district are assigned to teach.”
Szymanski looks at reactions to the ruling here.
Josh Dunn and Martha Derthick wrote about the earlier ruling in “Script Doctors: A Compelling Play on the Wrong Stage?”