Va. Senate panel backs teacher evaluation bill - WVVA TV Bluefield Beckley WV News, Weather and Sports

Va. Senate panel backs teacher evaluation bill

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RICHMOND, Va. (AP) -- A Virginia Senate committee has advanced a major component of Gov. Bob McDonnell's education reform package.

On a unanimous voice vote Thursday, the Education and Health Committee endorsed a bill overhauling evaluation and grievance procedures for teachers and school administrators.

The legislation allows school boards to expand teacher probationary periods from three years to five. It requires annual evaluations, and says teachers and principals can be fired after one bad appraisal. It also streamlines the grievance process.

The bill is a watered-down version of an unsuccessful measure McDonnell pushed last year. The Virginia Education Association opposed that legislation because it would have ended teacher tenure. The VEA supports this year's bill, which leaves tenure intact.

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