Can a teacher be encouraged to resign because they supposedly are not a good fit?

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Can a teacher be encouraged to resign because they supposedly are not a good fit?

A new teacher is on a probationary license until they have been employed for 2 years. During that time the teacher has many evaluations, etc. to ensure they met the state’s requirements to receive an official license. In this case, the teacher had received excellent evaluations, etc. up until March of the second year. At that time the teacher was told that he was not a good fit and that it would look better for him if he resigned his position rather than being terminated. It was also implied that if he did not resign it could affect his receiving his permanent license. However, he was told he could still keep his coaching contract, just not his teaching one. This teacher has now found out that the person who replaced him was the daughter in law of a former co-worker and coach of the superintendent. In other words, this person needed a job and this one fit the bill. Also, at the meeting where this teachers resignation was accepted, the school district hired the replacement. There was no advertising withing the district or without. I question the legality of hiring a person at the same meeting where a teacher resigned. I cannot believe there does not have to advertising of the opening. Is there anyway that the superintendent who was the key player in this whole situation could be reprimanded or what action could be taken?

Asked on March 11, 2018 under Employment Labor Law, Iowa

Answers:

M.D., Member, California and New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 4 years ago | Contributor

You need to check the requirements for hiring, firing, etc. for the school district if such documented requirements exist. If not, then if you have an employment contract or union agreement, you can check to see if your dismissal violated any of their terms. Otherwise, you were an "at will" worker which means that your employer could have fired you for any reason or no reason at all. Basically, it could have set the terms of your employment much as it saw fit, absent some form of actionable discrimination. And no such discrimination appears to have played a role in your treatment. That is you did not lose your job due to your race, religion, gender, age (over 40), nationality, disability or the like. The fact is that unless such discrimination exits, not all employees need be treated the same or even fairly.


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