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Tenure Approval Still +90 Percent

Hillel Aron | September 25, 2012

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The recent LA Magazine profile of Superintendent John Deasy included a surprising statistic:

“When Deasy arrived, about 98 percent of eligible teachers were granted tenure. Now the approval rate is less than 50 percent.”

That sounded unbelievable to me– it either had to be a mistake, or the result of some little-publicized but groundbreaking policy. It turns out it was the former.

According to LAUSD spokesman Tom Waldman, a misunderstanding occurred at some point between Deasy’s office and the reporter, Ed Leibowitz.

In fact, the percentage of teachers who are granted tenure is about the same under Deasy as under his predecessor Ramon Cortines. Here’s a chart Waldman sent me:

Although there is some fluctuation year-to-year, it’s clear that the percentage of teachers not getting tenure in 2009-2010 is the same as it is now. Deasy began as Superintendent in January of 2011 – right in the middle of the school year.

The bottom line is that more than 90% of LAUSD teachers that apply for tenure get it — before Deasy and since.

The LA Magazine article is behind a paywall, but you can read my blog post on the piece here.

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