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Some terms to understand about contracts are Term and Probationary contracts, Reduction in force and the 45 Day Rule. 

Contract Types:
There are two types of teacher contracts in Texas: Term and Probationary. A Term Contract is very similar to a continuing contract. The school district must have just cause to not renew a term contract. The Probationary Contract is just that, probationary. A school can dismiss a teacher on a probationary contract for any reason they choose. The only recourse a teacher has if dismissed under a probationary contract is to ask for an audience with the school board to plead your case. You cannot be on a probationary contract at a school for more than four years. After four years they will either dismiss you or put you on a term contract. Remember, with any contract problem, if you sign or submit a letter of resignation before you call the Association, our lawyer cannot help you because you would have already resigned.

Reduction in force:
If your school tells you they are dismissing you for “reduction in force,” you should ask the school for a copy of their reduction in force policy. If your school does not have a policy, they cannot use reduction in force. Some schools will ask a teacher to resign but claim they are going to use reduction in force and that resigning will look better on their record. Reduction in force cannot hurt your record. It means there was not a problem with you, just that the school does not have enough money to fund your position. If you are released because of reduction in force and they fill your position, if you did not resign, you can have a case against that school. If you resign and they have claimed reduction in force and replace you, you have no recourse.

10/45 Day Rule:
If your school has not told you otherwise, and you are on a term or probationary contract, and it is within 10 days of the last day of instruction, you are automatically renewed. The only way you could lose your job after this date is by reduction in force or if you committed an act the school could dismiss you for. On the other hand, you cannot resign without the schools blessing within 45 days of the first day of instruction. They could let you resign, but do not have to let you by law. If you do resign within 45 days of the first day of instruction, the school could choose to hold your teachers certificate for two years. This would make it impossible for you to teach in another school district for that time. The 45 Day Rule includes weekends and holidays. 

REMEMBER, THE ASSOCIATION CANNOT HELP YOU AFTER THE FACT. IF YOU HAVE TROUBLE WITH YOUR JOB OR CONTRACT CALL THE ASSOCIATION IMMEDIATELY.

   
 
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