Q: What changes were made to the model contracts for 2017?
A: The most significant changes to the TASB Model Contracts this year are those relating to the federal changes to the Elementary and Secondary Education Act (ESSA) removing the requirement for teachers to be highly qualified. Details about the specific changes are listed below.
- Certification. The wording was changed to track the language from ESSA, which requires teachers working in a program supported with federal funds to meet applicable state certification and licensure requirements. A reference to a teacher’s relinquishment of certification has been added in light of the new 19 Texas Administrative Code § 230.107.
- Highly Qualified Status. Language referencing the No Child Left Behind Act, 20 U.S.C. § 7801, was removed. Highly qualified status is no longer required under ESSA.
- Criminal History Review. Provisions relating to criminal history review were changed to reflect the mandatory requirement for certified employees to submit to criminal history background checks.
- Representations: During the Contract. This paragraph was revised to clarify that the time frame for employee notification should be the time period specified in TASB Policy DH(LOCAL), or seven calendar days, if no time period is specified in local policy.
- Incentive and Performance Pay. The references to specific state incentive pay statutes were removed as the specified program was not funded by the Texas Legislature.
- Termination of Contract. Termination provisions were edited to better track Texas Education Code § 21.211(a).
The 2017 TASB Model Contracts and related documents are available in the HR Library. These samples are prepared as general guidelines. School districts should consult with their local attorney to customize these samples for local use. Questions regarding the new contracts may be directed to TASB Legal Services at 800.580.5345 or TASB HR Services at 800.580.7782 or firstname.lastname@example.org.