Commentary: Vergara Lawsuit Could Be “Monumental”
EdSource commentary on Vergara v. California: “the biggest potential change to sweep California public education since Serrano v. Priest.”
From Dave Welch
Students Matter Founder Dave Welch urges education stakeholders to stop pushing out student-focused district leaders like Superintendents Deasy and Raymond.
Plaintiffs File Motion Opposing Summary Judgment
Filing highlights key evidence from districts, Plaintiffs and expert witnesses.
Vergara v. California Case Summary
Vergara v. California: The California Supreme Court has long recognized that equal opportunity to access quality education is a fundamental right guaranteed by the California Constitution. While having a truly high-quality education depends on many components, research shows that effective teachers are the single most important factor to ensuring a student’s academic success.
With the help of Students Matter, nine California public schools students filed the statewide lawsuit Vergara v. California against the State of California in May 2012. Read the Plaintiffs’ full complaint. The lawsuit seeks to strike down five provisions of the education code that, separately and together, push some of our best teachers out of the classroom and entrench grossly ineffective teachers in our schools, creating an arbitrary, unjustifiable and unconstitutional inequality among students:
- Permanent Employment Statute, which effectively guarantees all teachers permanent employment, also known as tenure, after only 18 months on the job and meaningless evaluations and before new teachers even complete their beginner teacher training program;
- Dismissal Statutes, which institute a costly, time-consuming and nearly insurmountable set of obstacles for school administrators to dismiss a single ineffective teacher; and
- Last-In, First-Out Statute, which forces school districts to make decisions about district-wide layoffs and subsequent reassignments based solely on teacher seniority, with no consideration for performance in the classroom.
In May 2013, the state’s two largest teachers union, the California Teachers Association and the California Federation of Teachers, chose to join the case as defendants through a motion to intervene. The California Superior Court of Los Angeles County has allocated four full weeks for the Vergara v. California trial, beginning on January 27, 2014. View the full Vergara v. California case timeline and read about what happens if we win.