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OPINION: Teacher Pink Slips Unwelcome

The deadline to inform teachers that they may not have a job next year arrived Thursday. Los Alamitos Unified sought to avoid layoffs with furloughs, but districts such as Capistrano Unified sent notices for roughly 399 full-time teaching jobs.

EDITOR'S NOTE: State Superintendent of Public Instruction Tom Torlakson issued the following statement regarding the issuance of thousands of preliminary layoff notices to California teachers.

Teachers across the state have rightly come to dread March 15. Though the very future of our state depends on California’s teachers, today many will receive a layoff notice that suggests just the opposite—and will now spend months in limbo, worrying about their futures and the future of their students.

Every pink slip being issued today is an unwelcome and undeserved blow to the morale of the teacher who receives it. They should also remind all of us of the urgency of finding the will and the resources to end the financial emergency facing our public schools.

The California Education Code Section 44955(b) requires school boards to issue preliminary pink slips by March 15, and then make the final decision on layoffs by May 15.

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