Why We Need to Get Rid of LIFO

New Jersey clings to the student-unfriendly policy of laying off school staff in order of seniority regardless of classroom effectiveness. So, as NJ Spotlight reports today, Camden Public Schools' lay-offs of 201 teachers due to necessary down-sizing and a $75 million budget deficit requires Superintendent Paymon Rouhanifard to fire some of the district's best teachers.

From Spotlight:
Christina Passwater, a literacy teacher at Whittier Elementary School...was the school’s recent teacher of the year, with the highest evaluations, and saw significant gains in student assessments. She read a letter from a grandmother praising the teacher’s work for her children.
Christina Bianca, a teacher in the district for eight years, said looking at her record will show she has received all satisfactory and distinguished ratings, and met all the student performance goals that have become the latest requirement, too.
“But what you wont find out is I arrive early every day, I work Saturdays and summer programs, and the countless times I have driven to houses to deliver missing assignments and the emails and letters and cards from parents thanking me,” she said.
“I love these kids, that what I am,” she said, choking up. “Every child deserves a champion. I am that champion and yet today I’m RIF’d.”
Rouhanifard explained that he "was required to look at specific positions, and then apply strict requirements that say layoffs be determined by seniority," adding, “[i]t is incredibly frustrating to see high-potential staff members being affected. In those instances, it is adhering to state law."

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