Find the right lawyer now

Teacher Tenure Laws

Find a Local Employment Lawyer near You

Teacher Tenure Laws

While every state has different tenure laws, there are certain consistent tenure principles applicable to most states.

What Is Tenure?

Tenure is an employment status that can be achieved by teachers where a teacher’s employment contract becomes indefinite and they cannot be terminated without sufficient cause and process.

When Is a Teacher Eligible for Tenure?

Teachers can attain tenure after successfully teaching at a school district for a specified period of time set by the state. Most states require between 3-5 years of successful teaching prior to being eligible for tenure.

What Protections Does Tenure Provide?

Once a teacher earns tenure, they earn certain rights, including:

  • A permanent employment contract
  • Job security preference over non-tenured teachers in the event the school needs to terminate positions
  • Protection from termination without sufficient cause
  • Right to notice, hearing, and appeal for any termination actions

When Can a Tenured Teacher be Dismissed?

Tenured teachers may be subject to termination for certain reasons, including:

  • Inefficiency or incompetence, based on established standards
  • Insubordination against reasonable rules
  • Moral misconduct
  • Proven medical disability preventing teaching
  • Other sufficient causes

What Process Is Required to Termination a Tenured Teacher?

If a school district takes termination action against a tenured teacher, they must provide the teacher with:

  • Notice
  • Reason(s) for dismissal
  • A hearing upon request
  • Opportunity to appeal

Contacting an Attorney

If you have issues regarding tenured status, contact an experienced attorney to help you resolve your issue.

Photo of page author Grant Atkinson

, LegalMatch Legal Writer and Attorney at Law

Last Modified: 02-12-2014 03:10 PM PST

Law Library Disclaimer
  • No fee to present your case
  • Choose from lawyers in your area
  • A 100% confidential service
What is LegalMatch?

We've helped more than 4 million clients find the right lawyer – for free. Present your case online in minutes. LegalMatch matches you to pre-screened lawyers in your city or county based on the specifics of your case. Within 24 hours experienced local lawyers review it and evaluate if you have a solid case. If so, attorneys respond with an offer to represent you that includes a full attorney profile with details on their fee structure, background, and ratings by other LegalMatch users so you can decide if they're the right lawyer for you.