KBS Reference Desk: Return to Probationary Status

Q:        I have a term contract teacher whose performance has been lacking this past year in regards to classroom management and instruction. I am not ready to recommend the proposed nonrenewal of her contract because she is in a highly desired field that would be difficult to replace. Can I offer this teacher a probationary contract next year rather than a term contract?

A:       Yes, provided that you give the teacher written notice of this decision, an opportunity to consult with an attorney or teacher organization, and three days to consider the offer.

A term contract may be ended only by termination for good cause, nonrenewal or by the teacher’s resignation. Otherwise, the teacher’s contract will renew by operation of law if no specific action is taken to renew or nonrenew the contract. Texas Education Code 21.206(b). A small exception is carved out in Texas Education Code section 21.106(c) which provides that a teacher may agree to be returned to probationary status under certain conditions. This agreement may occur after the superintendent has communicated the intention to recommend the teacher’s proposed termination for good cause or nonrenewal to the board. To make the agreement valid, the statute requires that written notice is given to the teacher that:

1.      Informs the teacher of the district’s offer to return him or her to probationary contract status;

2.      The period during which the teacher may consider the offer (must be at least three district business days); and

3.      The teacher’s right to seek counsel (or contact their teacher organization).

Should the teacher consider the offer and agree, the board is free to renew employment under a probationary contract for the next year. However, should the teacher refuse, the district will either need to offer the teacher a term contract for the following year or begin proceedings to propose the teacher’s nonrenewal or termination. 

Related Posts

Recent Articles

KBS Reference Desk: Felony Conviction and School Board Candidates
April 9, 2021
KBS Reference Desk: T-TESS Rubric Virtual
April 2, 2021
KBS Reference Desk: COVID-19 Vaccination Status Questions and EEO Laws
March 26, 2021
KBS Reference Desk: Certification Addendum
March 19, 2021
KBS Reference Desk: Lifting of Mask Mandate and Implications for UIL Activities
March 12, 2021
KBS Reference Desk: Identification of TPIA Requestor
March 5, 2021
KBS Reference Desk: Pay During Closure
February 26, 2021
KBS Reference Desk: Vaccines and Quarantine
February 19, 2021
KBS Reference Desk: Face Masks and the First Amendment
February 12, 2021
KBS Reference Desk: Virtual Learning and Child Find
February 5, 2021
KBS Reference Desk: American Rescue Plan
January 29, 2021
KBS Reference Desk: Spring Testing
January 22, 2021
KBS Reference Desk: TOMA Suspension Extension – Additional 30 days
January 15, 2021
KBS Reference Desk: Updated FFCRA Guidance
January 8, 2021
KBS Reference Desk: New Stay-at-Home Protocols
December 18, 2020
KBS Reference Desk: Vaccine as a Requirement for School Attendance
December 11, 2020
KBS Reference Desk: Campus Closure due to COVID-19 and Funding
December 4, 2020
KBS Reference Desk: Nonexempt Volunteer Work
November 20, 2020
KBS Reference Desk: Required Transition from Virtual to ON-campus Learning
November 13, 2020
KBS Reference Desk: TPIA – 10-day Extension
November 6, 2020
KBS Reference Desk: Discontinue Virtual Learning
October 30, 2020
KBS Reference Desk: Political Dress
October 23, 2020
KBS Reference Desk: Emergency Safety Drills
October 16, 2020
KBS Reference Desk: Requests for Homebound Instruction During COVID
October 9, 2020
KBS Reference Desk: Mask Exception
October 2, 2020