Teachers with tenure in St. Louis could be fired for incompetency under a bill that was passed Thursday by the Missouri Senate.
Current law allows St. Louis teachers to be let go for inefficiency on the job, but not for incompetence. The sponsor, Democrat Jamilah Nasheed of St. Louis, says Senate Bill 125 will bring the city in line with the rest of the state.
“It is very difficult for the city of St. Louis to get rid of teachers, due to the fact of the time span," Nasheed said. "(In) all of the 521 districts right now, it takes 30 days -- in St. Louis city, when we want to get rid of a teacher, it takes 90 days.”
Several Senate members became angry when fellow Democrat Scott Sifton of Affton told the chamber that organized labor strongly opposed the bill and that Senators would be rated on how they voted. It passed 33 to 1, with North County Democrat Gina Walsh casting the lone “no” vote.
It was the first bill sponsored by Nasheed to be passed by the Missouri Senate, which meant that she got to experience some mild-mannered hazing that every freshman Senator goes through -- several Senators voted "no" on Nasheed's bill, only to change their votes to "yes" before the roll call officially ended.
The bill now goes to the Missouri House.
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The Missouri Senate has given first-round approval to legislation that would allow tenured St. Louis teachers to be fired for "incompetency."
The bill is sponsored by Sen. Jamilah Nasheed, a Democrat from St. Louis. She told colleagues Wednesday the measure brings the school district in line with standards for the rest of the state.
Missouri law now allows tenured teachers in St. Louis teachers to be terminated for "inefficiency" on the job, but not for incompetence.
Nasheed's bill would also let St. Louis district dismiss ineffective and incompetent teachers after 30 days, instead of waiting the current one semester.
The measure needs one more Senate vote before moving to the House.