Education A State Capitals Roundup

Some Calif. Principals Could Get More Control Over Hiring

By Vaishali Honawar — September 06, 2006 1 min read

A bill that passed both houses of the California legislature with overwhelming majorities seeks to give principals in low-performing schools more control over the hiring of teachers for their schools.

Introduced by Sen. Jack Scott, a Democrat, the bill would set a deadline of April 15 for teachers to request a transfer to another school within the district and still have priority over other qualified applicants from outside the district. After that date, the hiring process would be open to all applicants.

The bill would not affect involuntary transfers, which could be necessitated by a district’s financial needs and declining enrollment.

A statement from Sen. Scott’s office quoted a 2003 report from the New Teacher Project, a New York City-based research and advocacy group, that said hard-to-staff districts lose opportunities to hire strong teacher-candidates because of delays caused or made worse by district policies requiring schools to hire all transfers before making new job offers.

The bill passed the Assembly by a vote of 59-12, and the Senate by 33-1.

Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger’s press office said last week that the governor had not yet taken a position on the bill.

A version of this article appeared in the September 06, 2006 edition of Education Week