Senator Teresa Ruiz, D-Essex and Union, speaks on a point of personal privilege on the Senate floor.

26 May: Ruiz Introduces Bill To Overhaul State’s Century-Old Tenure Laws, Promote Teacher Mentorship

TRENTON – State Senator M. Teresa Ruiz (D-Essex/Union) today introduced legislation to overhaul the state’s century-old tenure laws and create a new system that will require teachers to prove they are effective in the classroom to gain tenure status and to continue demonstrating their effectiveness over the course of their careers to maintain it.

Recognizing that a strong support system is key to ensuring that teachers are successful, the Teacher Effectiveness and Accountability for the Children of New Jersey (TEACHNJ) Act would establish a first-year mentorship program for those entering the field. Instruction-based professional development would be provided to all teachers, under the bill, with additional support for those who demonstrate the need for extra help.

“Having effective teachers at the front of every classroom is critical to ensuring that all students are given the opportunities they deserve to achieve true academic success,” said Senator Ruiz. “But success cannot be realized without providing the necessary support to our teachers beginning on the first day they enter the school building and continuing throughout their careers. It is our responsibility to focus our efforts on elevating this important profession, as well as ensuring that students in every classroom have the educational tools they need to excel.”