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Young teachers to lose potential tenure

The full Florida House on Thursday afternoon passed a so-called education "repealer" bill, eliminating outdated language from state statutes.

Except getting rid of part of that language means first-, second- and third-year teachers will not be eligible for three-year, professional services contracts commonly known as tenure.

The Legislature did away with tenure earlier this session, saying current teachers would not be affected by the change. The wrinkle comes with young teachers who are on annual contracts and have not yet qualified for tenure.

"I want to thank you again for again showing the people of Florida how disingenuous some of this legislation has been," state Rep. Dwight Bullard, a South Miami-Dade Democrat, said on the House floor.

But Republicans told our colleagues at The Gradebook that they didn't promise teachers who didn't already have tenure that they could get it. And the issue is now moot, said Rep. Kelli Stargel, the Lakeland Republican who moved the repealer bill forward.

"We're not doing anything sneaky," she said, before her proposal passed along party lines, 78-39.