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Associated Press, Published April 02 2012

Minnesota lawmakers finalizes teacher layoff bill

ST. PAUL, Minn. — Minnesota lawmakers have finalized a bill that would let schools lay off teachers based on their performance in the classroom.

A conference committee finalized the bill Monday and sent it back to the Senate and House for final votes. However, Gov. Mark Dayton said last week he would not sign the bill.

Current law says that schools must only consider teacher seniority when making layoffs, unless districts negotiate different local policies. Under the bill, schools will be able to weigh teacher evaluations before seniority in layoff decisions.

Dayton says the bill is one of several introduced by Republicans this session that undermine public schools and teachers.

Bill sponsor Rep. Branden Petersen says he expects final House and Senate votes on the bill this week.

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