Q: Can a teacher withdraw his or her resignation once it has been submitted?
A: A teacher’s ability to withdraw his or her resignation depends on when the resignation is effective and whether it has been officially accepted. A resignation that is effective at the end of the year is automatic as long as it is received 45 days before the first day of instruction. The district is not required to accept it, and the district cannot reject it [(Tex. Comm’r of Educ. Decision No. 034-R8-0206 (March 5, 2009)]. An educator cannot withdraw an end-of-year resignation without permission from the district. If a resignation is effective at the end of the year, the resignation is effective upon filing with the district.
The process for resignations effective mid-year are different. When the district receives a teacher’s resignation, it should generally act quickly to accept the resignation to prevent the employee from rescinding it. If the district does not provide the teacher with written notification of the acceptance, the teacher may be able to withdraw his or her resignation and continue to be employed by the district.
The authority to accept the resignations of contract employees belongs to the board. Most boards delegate this authority to the superintendent or a designee. This provides districts with the ability to act quickly in accepting resignations. The delegation of authority is typically addressed in Policy DFE(LOCAL)—Termination of Employment: Resignation.
Written notice of acceptance can be given by using the sample notice of acceptance of resignation in the HR Library (member login required) or by taking the following steps:
- Write “accepted” at the bottom of the employee’s resignation letter.
- Have the person with authority to accept the resignation sign his or her name and title.
- Date the acceptance notification.
- Provide a copy of the accepted resignation to the employee.
One caution regarding acceptance of resignations that would take effect during the school year—once a resignation has been formally accepted, the district forfeits any right to file a complaint regarding abandonment of contract with the State Board for Educator Certification.