Know Your Rights: ‘Tis the Season for Non-Renewal of Employment Contracts
From the Executive Director Jim Ballard
The next ten weeks is the season for non-renewal for school administrator employment contracts. If your contract is at risk, please call us early in the process. Please, don’t wait. More than once I’ve had members call asking for help and telling me that the Board meeting was scheduled that afternoon!
Please, know your contract. You wouldn’t believe the members we speak with who don’t have a contract, don’t know where their contract is, or haven’t read their contract.
MASSP Assigns an Attorney to You
Upon your call, you will be given the phone number and ID number to contact a labor attorney. He/she will assist you in this difficult and emotional process.
What is the law in regard to nonrenewal?
Revised School Code:
(2) The board of a school district or intermediate school district may employ assistant superintendents, principals, assistant principals, guidance directors, and other administrators who do not assume tenure in that position. The employment shall be by written contract. The term of the employment contract shall be fixed by the board, not to exceed 3 years. The board shall prescribe the duties of a person described in this subsection. If written notice of nonrenewal of the contract of a person described in this subsection is not given at least 60 days before the termination date of the contract, the contract is renewed for an additional 1-year period.
(3) A notification of nonrenewal of contract of a person described in subsection (2) may be given only for a reason that is not arbitrary or capricious.
The board shall not issue a notice of nonrenewal under this section unless the affected person has been provided with not less than 30 days’ advance notice that the board is considering the nonrenewal together with a written statement of the reasons the board is considering the nonrenewal.
After the issuance of the written statement, but before the nonrenewal statement is issued, the affected person shall be given the opportunity to meet with not less than a majority of the board to discuss the reasons stated in the written statement.
The meeting shall be open to the public or a closed session, as the affected person elects.
If the board fails to provide for a meeting with the board, or if a court finds that the reason for nonrenewal is arbitrary or capricious, the affected person’s contract is renewed for an additional 1-year period.
Your Legal Fees
The association pays for the first two and half hours of legal counsel ($450). Additional support will be provided if needed. You will be expected to pay an additional $250. The MASSP checkbook will pay additional legal fees up to $5,000. So, your cost is no more than $250.
If you’re a combination MASSP/NASSP member you seek payment from NASSP for the balance over the first $500. NASSP has a floating amount based upon years of membership. MASSP will pay the balance of what NASSP hasn’t paid.