Skip navigation
Annenberg School of Communication and Journalism University of Southern California
Southern California

Landmark Lawsuit Challenges Teacher Employment Policies

Students contend tenure policies compromise the quality of education, but teachers say job security improves student performance.

UPDATED 2/25/14

The first law the students are challenging allows for teachers to receive permanent employment after 18 months of evaluation.

ORIGINAL 2/19/14

In a downtown Los Angeles courtroom, students are challenging teacher employment policies that they say protect incompetent educators.

The lawsuit Vergara vs. California, brought against the state by a group of former LAUSD students, charges that five state statutes unfairly compromise educational quality by giving blanket job security.

By giving teachers permanent employment after 16 months of evaluation, mandating a lengthy dismissal process, and calling for junior teachers to be laid off before senior ones, tenure policies actually protect ineffective teachers rather than promoting capable ones, students say.

In response, the California Teachers' Association says the laws offer educators stability, and such a secure job environment translates to achievement gains for students.

Further, teachers contend that opponents to tenure laws elevate a handful of exceptional situations rather than the typical scenario for public educators.

Testimony in the lawsuit is ongoing, and the state's teachers association is expected to argue their case during the first week of March.

Leave a comment

We've Moved!

By Sam Bergum
01/21/16 | 11:09 a.m. PST

Visit us at!

USC Basketball Knocks Off Rival UCLA 89- 75

By Scott Cook
01/14/16 | 12:05 a.m. PST

USC defeats UCLA with stellar play from their Freshmen. 

Holiday Bowl - USC vs Wisconsin Post-Game Press Conference

Su'a Cravens: "It's the players that need to step up"

Darreus Rogers: "It comes down to the players"

Trojans Fall to Wisconsin in the Holiday Bowl 23-21

We detected that you might be on a mobile device such as an iPad or iPhone. Sorry, at this time the video box is only visible on desktop computers.