SB278 (Senator Smith), which changes the date by which probationary teachers must be notified of their nonrenewal from April 15 to June 15, came up for a vote on the floor of the Senate today. The bill initially passed on a vote of 28Y-12N but then Senator Howell (Fairfax) moved to reconsider the vote and pass the bill by for the day. This is a tactic that is sometimes used to garner additional opposition votes.
The recently adopted Guidelines for Uniform Performance Standards and Evaluation Criteria for Teachers use student growth as a significant factor (40%) in teacher evaluations. The results of SOL tests, which are used as the measure of student growth in SOL courses, are not available until late May or early June, thus making the April 15 deadline unworkable. Likewise, in non-SOL courses, it is unworkable and unreasonable to attempt to measure student growth prior to April 15.
Contact your Senator TODAY to urge him or her to vote YES on SB278.