Senate Republican Leader Bob Huff, R-Diamond Bar, spoke in favor of Gov. Jerry Brown's veto Thursday of a a bill supporters say was aimed at simplifying the teacher dismissal hearing process.
Assembly Bill 375, authored by Northern California Democratic Assemblywoman Joan Buchanan, would have put sped up teacher dismissals by setting limits on the appeal process, according to supports. Opponents of the measure said the restrictions to the time frame would actually hamper getting rid of problem teachers.
"This bill was an underhanded attempt to
protect even the worst abusers from being held accountable when they
prey on our students," Huff said in a statement.
"It would not have improved the current system and
in some ways would have made it worse. Students and families deserve
protection against sexual predators in schools and AB 375 would not have
provided this. Now more than ever we need real reform that puts the
interests of students first, not adults.”
Buchanan said last month, after the bill had passed in both houses and was headed to the governor, that she felt her law would help curb the costs of drawn-out legislation.
"The current system results in dismissal disputes taking years to
resolve with costs that can exceed $100,000," she said in a news release. "The only people who win
are the attorneys.”
Brown wrote in a veto memo that he had specific concerns about the bill's limit on depositions for both sides and it's restriction on a district's ability to change
the charges even if new evidence is discovered.
"While I agree that it makes worthwhile adjustments to the dismissal
process, such as lifting the summer moratorium on the filing of
charges and eliminating some opportunities for delay, other changes
make the process too rigid and could create new problems," Brown said.