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N.J. teacher keeps job after being late 111 times in 2 years
No Caption - photo by Eric Schulzke
A New Jersey teacher who earns $90,000 a year can keep his job after being late 111 times over a two-year stretch, an arbitrator ruled, after finding that the district had not given him any proper warning and due process.

The attempt to fire Arnold Anderson sought to use a tenure reform law signed by Gov. Chris Christie in 2012 was designed to make it easier to fire underperforming teachers.

Anderson told the Associated Press on Friday that his problem is breakfast. "I have a bad habit of eating breakfast in the morning, and I lost track of time," he said, adding that he was rarely more than one or two minutes late to school and was never late to class. "I have to cut out eating breakfast at home," he said.

"The process of filing tenure charges used to take years, but the new regulations require a state-appointed arbitrator to make a ruling within 90 days," My Central New Jersey notes. "The law makes it easier to file 'inefficiency' charges against educators, which rarely happened under the former tenure law. Teachers can be charged with inefficiency after getting two consecutive poor annual evaluations."

However, an arbitrator can reject the tenure-stripping move if the district has not given proper due process, or if it made errors in fact or otherwise acted improperly.

Christie, who has made sparring with teachers and teacher unions a regular feature of his governorship, responded to the Anderson decision with a tweet. "Think I'm too tough on the teachers union? This is what we're dealing with in NJ," Christie tweeted.

A few weeks ago, he told CNN's Jake Tapper that teacher unions deserved a "punch in the face."

Speaking of the American Federation of Teachers in particular but teacher unions in general, Christie told Tapper they were not for education for our children. Theyre for greater membership, greater benefits, greater pay for their members. And they are the single most destructive force in public education in America. I have been saying that since 2009. I have got the scars to show it. But Im never going to stop saying it, because they never change their stripes.
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