Governor Bob McDonnell issued the following statement regarding passage of The House version of his Educator Fairness Act today in the Senate. The legislation, passed today on a bipartisan 32-8 vote, is now on its way to the governor. The Educator Fairness Act was part of the governor's All Students K-12 legislative agenda. The Educator Fairness Act extends the probationary window for teachers from 3 to up to 5 years, to allow for a more thoughtful examination of teachers being awarded continuing contract status, and to allow for an extended period of mentoring for new teachers. It also provides for a definition of incompetence to include one or more unsatisfactory performance evaluations and defines the relationship between the evaluation and the contract. This act will streamline the grievance procedure and will allow for an expedited decision to inform the teacher of the final outcome.
"I am grateful for members of both parties who worked together and passed the Educator Fairness Act, to reform Virginia's teacher contract and grievance system. I plan to sign this legislation as soon as it gets to my desk. The vote in the Senate today shows what can happen when members of both parties set aside their differences in order to improve the overall learning environment for all students in the Commonwealth. These reforms will result in teacher contracts that are fairer, clearer and will result in giving our students more capable and better-trained educators in the classroom."