Teachers being handed pink slips as summer arrives

Published: May. 26, 2023 at 8:56 PM CDT
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BIRMINGHAM, Ala. (WBRC) - As school districts across the state wrap up the school year, some districts are starting to hand out pink slips.

That’s a slang term for non-renewal of an employee’s contract.

Usually, employees during their probationary period receive year-to-year employment.

It will renew itself unless the board of education decides not to, and that’s called a non-renewal or pink slip.

According to William Tunnell with the Alabama Education Association, these are not the same as a termination.

“It does mean an end to an era at that particular employer but they’re certainly free to move onto another location,” Tunnell said.

Right now, William said they are seeing less non-renewals issued due to the employee shortage.

“But as more people get into the profession, you see it easier for districts to find replacements, but now is not really that time,” Tunnell said.

William said not all pink slips are based on an employee’s performance or behavior.

“But a lot of times our positions may go away due to a decline in student enrollment or if a position is grant funded, things of that nature,” Tunnell said.

One of the roles of AEA is to hold school districts accountable when they do assign non-renewals.

“It’s much easier to work with an employee, to train an employee, and to keep an employee rather than to release that employee and try to find someone else that you then have to work with, manage, and train all over again,” Tunnell said.

Tunnell says AEA is working hard to make the industry more attractive to get more teachers and support staff.

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