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New tenured teachers receive director’s praise

Eighteen Washington County schoolteachers were recently honored for receiving tenure during the Washington County Board of Education’s monthly meeting, the first group of educators since the change in law took effect three years ago.
Director of Schools Ron Dykes said in 2011, significant revisions to the laws regarding tenure for public schoolteachers in Tennessee changed. Those revisions involved several components.
“First, instead of a three-year probationary period, it turned into a five-year probationary period,” he said.
The tenure is also granted based upon the teacher’s evaluation score, which is calculated from 50 percent of classroom observation and 50 percent of student effect data.
Dykes said at the end of each year, the calculation performed by the state results in a composite score for each teacher, which ranges from a scale of one to five.
“Anything above a three is considered above expectation,” he said. “For a probationary teacher to receive tenure after 2011, they must start a composite score of a four or a five in years four and five. That is a very difficult status to achieve under the new law.”
Last month Dykes recommended several teachers for tenure, which the board approved.
On Oct. 2, the first group of Washington County teachers were publicly honored for receiving tenure under the new guidelines.
Those teachers include: Danielle Scott from Boones Creek Elementary School; Deborah Bailey from David Crockett High School; Sara Christian Ratliff from Grandview Elementary School; Emily Day from Grandview Elementary School; Stephanie Gray from Grandview Elementary School; Ashley Morrow from Grandview Elementary School; Jason Ahrens from Gray Elementary School; Jenny Galloway from Gray Elementary School; Amy Knight from Gray Elementary School; Candice Bolus from Jonesborough Elementary School; Jessica Bowman from Ridgeview Elementary School; Eric Campbell from South Central Elementary School; Kyleah Mauk from South Central Elementary School; Natalie Simmons from Sulphur Springs Elementary School; Erin Eberhart from Sulphur Springs Elementary School; Kimberly Allison from University School; Nikki Combs from West View Elementary School and Clarinda Whitson from West View Elementary School.
“This is a true honor for these (teachers) to have received this. There is not a more difficult time in this business that exists today. The accountability is tremendous on students, as well as educators. These individuals to rise to this level of efficiency is highly commendable. We honor them again, congratulations.”