MN Legislature

Accessibility menu

Session laws use visual text formatting such as stricken text to denote deleted language, and underlined text to denote new language. For users of the jaws screenreader it is recommended to configure jaws to use the proofreading scheme which will alter the pitch of the reading voice when reading stricken and underlined text. Instructions for configuring your jaws reader are provided by following this link.
If you can not or do not wish to configure your screen reader, deleted language will begin with the phrase "deleted text begin" and be followed by the phrase "deleted text end", new language will begin with the phrase "new text begin" and be followed by "new text end". Skip to text of Chapter 196.

Menu

Revisor of Statutes Menu

Authenticate

Pdf

1991 Minnesota Session Laws

Key: (1) language to be deleted (2) new language

  

                         Laws of Minnesota 1991 

                         CHAPTER 196-S.F.No. 86 
           An act relating to education; providing for the 
          arbitration of disputes concerning the proposed 
          termination, discharge, or demotion of teachers 
          following the probationary period; amending Minnesota 
          Statutes 1990, sections 125.12, subdivision 4, and by 
          adding a subdivision; 125.17, subdivision 5, and by 
          adding a subdivision; 179A.04, subdivision 3; and 
          179A.20, subdivision 4. 
BE IT ENACTED BY THE LEGISLATURE OF THE STATE OF MINNESOTA: 
    Section 1.  Minnesota Statutes 1990, section 125.12, 
subdivision 4, is amended to read: 
    Subd. 4.  [TERMINATION OF CONTRACT AFTER PROBATIONARY 
PERIOD.] A teacher who has completed a probationary period in 
any school district, and who has not been discharged or advised 
of a refusal to renew the teacher's contract pursuant to 
subdivision 3, shall have a continuing contract with such 
district.  Thereafter, the teacher's contract shall remain in 
full force and effect, except as modified by mutual consent of 
the board and the teacher, until terminated by a majority roll 
call vote of the full membership of the board prior to April 1 
upon one of the grounds specified in subdivision 6 or prior to 
June 1 upon one of the grounds specified in subdivision 6a or 
6b, or until the teacher is discharged pursuant to subdivision 
8, or by the written resignation of the teacher submitted prior 
to April 1; provided, however, that if an agreement as to the 
terms and conditions of employment for the succeeding school 
year has not been adopted pursuant to the provisions of sections 
179A.01 to 179A.25 prior to March 1, the teacher's right of 
resignation shall be extended to the 30th calendar day following 
the adoption of said contract in compliance with section 
179A.20, subdivision 5.  Such written resignation by the teacher 
shall be effective as of June 30 if submitted prior to that date 
and the teachers' right of resignation for the school year then 
beginning shall cease on July 15.  Before a teacher's contract 
is terminated by the board, the board shall notify the teacher 
in writing and state its ground for the proposed termination in 
reasonable detail together with a statement that the teacher may 
make a written request for a hearing before the board within 14 
days after receipt of such notification.  If the grounds are 
those specified in subdivision 6 or 8, the notice must also 
state a teacher may request arbitration under section 2.  Within 
14 days after receipt of this notification the teacher may make 
a written request for a hearing before the board or an 
arbitrator and it shall be granted upon reasonable notice to the 
teacher of the date set for hearing, before final action is 
taken.  If no hearing is requested within such period, it shall 
be deemed acquiescence by the teacher to the board's action.  
Such termination shall take effect at the close of the school 
year in which the contract is terminated in the manner 
aforesaid.  Such contract may be terminated at any time by 
mutual consent of the board and the teacher and this section 
shall not affect the powers of a board to suspend, discharge, or 
demote a teacher under and pursuant to other provisions of law. 
    Sec. 2.  Minnesota Statutes 1990, section 125.12, is 
amended by adding a subdivision to read: 
    Subd. 9a.  [HEARING AND DETERMINATION BY ARBITRATOR.] A 
teacher whose termination is proposed under subdivision 4 on 
grounds specified in subdivision 6, or whose discharge is 
proposed under subdivision 8, may elect a hearing before an 
arbitrator instead of the school board.  The hearing is governed 
by this subdivision.  
    (a) The teacher must make a written request for a hearing 
before an arbitrator within 14 days after receiving notification 
of proposed termination on grounds specified in subdivision 6 or 
within ten days of receiving notification of proposed discharge 
under subdivision 8.  If a request for a hearing does not 
specify that the hearing be before an arbitrator, it shall be 
considered to be a request for a hearing before the school board.
    (b) If the teacher and the school board are unable to 
mutually agree on an arbitrator, the school board shall request 
from the bureau of mediation services a list of five persons to 
serve as an arbitrator.  If the matter to be heard is a proposed 
termination on grounds specified in subdivision 6, arbitrators 
on the list must be available to hear the matter and make a 
decision within a time frame that will allow the school board to 
comply with all statutory timelines relating to termination.  If 
the teacher and the school board are unable to mutually agree on 
an arbitrator from the list provided, the parties shall 
alternately strike names from the list until the name of one 
arbitrator remains.  The person remaining after the striking 
procedure shall be the arbitrator.  If the parties are unable to 
agree on who shall strike the first name, the question must be 
decided by a flip of a coin.  The teacher and the school board 
shall share equally the costs and fees of the arbitrator. 
    (c) The arbitrator shall determine, by a preponderance of 
the evidence, whether the grounds for termination or discharge 
specified in subdivision 6 or 8 exist to support the proposed 
termination or discharge.  A lesser penalty than termination or 
discharge may be imposed by the arbitrator only to the extent 
that either party proposes such lesser penalty in the 
proceeding.  In making the determination, the arbitration 
proceeding is governed by sections 572.11 to 572.17 and by the 
collective bargaining agreement applicable to the teacher.  
    (d) An arbitration hearing conducted under this subdivision 
is a meeting for preliminary consideration of allegations or 
charges within the meaning of section 471.705, subdivision 1d, 
clause (c), and shall be closed, unless the teacher requests it 
to be open. 
    (e) The arbitrator's award is final and binding on the 
parties, subject to sections 572.18 to 572.26. 
    Sec. 3.  Minnesota Statutes 1990, section 125.17, 
subdivision 5, is amended to read: 
    Subd. 5.  [HEARING OF CHARGES AGAINST TEACHER.] The charges 
against a teacher shall be in writing and signed by the person 
making the same and then filed with the secretary or clerk of 
the school board having charge of the school in which the 
teacher is employed.  Such school board before discharging or 
demoting a teacher shall then accord the teacher against whom 
such charges have been filed a full hearing and give to the 
teacher at least ten days' notice in writing of the time and 
place of such hearing; such notice may be served personally or 
sent by certified mail addressed to such teacher at the 
teacher's last known post office address; provided, that if the 
charge be made by any person not in connection with the school 
system the charge may be disregarded by such school board.  If 
the grounds are those specified in subdivision 4, clause (1), 
(2), (3), or (4), the notice must also state a teacher may 
request arbitration under section 4.  Upon such hearing being 
held such school board or an arbitrator shall hear all evidence 
that may be adduced in support of the charges and for the 
teacher's defense thereto.  Either party shall have the right to 
have a written record of the hearing at the expense of the board 
and to have witnesses subpoenaed and all witnesses so subpoenaed 
shall be examined under oath.  Any member of the school board 
conducting such a hearing shall have authority to issue 
subpoenas and to administer oaths to witnesses. 
    Sec. 4.  Minnesota Statutes 1990, section 125.17, is 
amended by adding a subdivision to read: 
    Subd. 10a.  [HEARING AND DETERMINATION BY ARBITRATOR.] A 
teacher against whom charges have been filed alleging any cause 
for discharge or demotion specified in subdivision 4, clause 
(1), (2), (3), or (4), may elect a hearing before an arbitrator 
instead of the school board.  The hearing is governed by this 
subdivision.  
    (a) The teacher must make a written request for a hearing 
before an arbitrator within ten days after receiving a written 
notice of the filing of charges required by subdivision 5.  
Failure to request a hearing before an arbitrator during this 
period is considered acquiescence to a hearing before the board. 
    (b) If the teacher and the school board are unable to 
mutually agree on an arbitrator, the school board shall request 
from the bureau of mediation services a list of five persons to 
serve as an arbitrator.  If the teacher and the school board are 
unable to mutually agree on an arbitrator from the list 
provided, the parties shall alternately strike names from the 
list until the name of one arbitrator remains.  The person 
remaining after the striking procedure shall be the arbitrator.  
If the parties are unable to agree on who shall strike the first 
name, the question must be decided by a flip of a coin.  The 
teacher and the school board shall share equally the costs and 
fees of the arbitrator. 
    (c) The arbitrator shall determine, by a preponderance of 
the evidence, whether the causes specified in subdivision 4, 
clause (1), (2), (3), or (4), exist to support the proposed 
discharge or demotion.  A lesser penalty than discharge or 
demotion may be imposed by the arbitrator only to the extent 
that either party proposes such lesser penalty in the 
proceeding.  In making the determination, the arbitration 
proceeding is governed by sections 572.11 to 572.17 and by the 
collective bargaining agreement applicable to the teacher. 
    (d) An arbitration hearing conducted under this subdivision 
is a meeting for preliminary consideration of allegations or 
charges within the meaning of section 471.705, subdivision 1d, 
clause (c), and shall be closed, unless the teacher requests it 
to be open. 
    (e) The arbitrator's decision is final and binding on the 
parties, subject to sections 572.18 to 572.26. 
    Sec. 5.  Minnesota Statutes 1990, section 179A.04, 
subdivision 3, is amended to read: 
    Subd. 3.  [OTHER DUTIES.] The commissioner shall:  
    (a) provide mediation services as requested by the parties 
until the parties reach agreement.  The commissioner may 
continue to assist parties after they have submitted their final 
positions for interest arbitration; 
    (b) issue notices, subpoenas, and orders required by law to 
carry out duties under sections 179A.01 to 179A.25; 
    (c) certify to the board items of dispute between parties 
subject to action of the board under section 179A.16; 
    (d) assist the parties in formulating petitions, notices, 
and other papers required to be filed with the commissioner or 
the board; 
    (e) certify the final results of any election or other 
voting procedure conducted under sections 179A.01 to 179A.25; 
    (f) adopt rules relating to the administration of this 
chapter; and the conduct of hearings and elections; 
    (g) receive, catalogue, and file all orders and decisions 
of the board, all decisions of arbitration panels authorized by 
sections 179A.01 to 179A.25, all grievance arbitration 
decisions, and the commissioner's orders and decisions.  All 
orders and decisions catalogued and filed shall be readily 
available to the public; 
    (h) adopt, subject to chapter 14, a grievance procedure to 
fulfill the purposes of section 179A.20, subdivision 4.  The 
grievance procedure shall not provide for the services of the 
bureau of mediation services.  The grievance procedure shall be 
available to any employee in a unit not covered by a contractual 
grievance procedure; 
    (i) conduct elections; 
    (j) maintain a schedule of state employee classifications 
or positions assigned to each unit established in section 
179A.10, subdivision 2; 
    (k) collect such fees as are established by rule for 
empanelment of persons on the labor arbitrator roster maintained 
by the commissioner or in conjunction with fair share fee 
challenges; and 
    (l) provide technical support and assistance to voluntary 
joint labor-management committees established for the purpose of 
improving relationships between exclusive representatives and 
employers, at the discretion of the commissioner; and 
    (m) from the names provided by representative 
organizations, maintain a list of arbitrators to conduct teacher 
discharge or termination hearings according to section 125.12 or 
125.17.  The persons on the list shall meet at least one of the 
following requirements: 
    (1) be a former or retired judge; 
    (2) be a qualified arbitrator on the list maintained by 
either the bureau of mediation services or the public employment 
relations board according to section 179A.05, subdivision 6; 
    (3) be a present, former, or retired administrative law 
judge; or 
    (4) be a neutral individual who is learned in the law and 
admitted to practice in Minnesota, who is qualified by 
experience to conduct these hearings, and who is without bias to 
either party. 
    Each year, the Minnesota education association shall 
provide a list of seven names, the Minnesota federation of 
teachers a list of seven names, and the Minnesota school boards 
association a list of 14 names of persons to be on the list.  
The commissioner may adopt rules about maintaining and updating 
the list. 
    Sec. 6.  Minnesota Statutes 1990, section 179A.20, 
subdivision 4, is amended to read: 
    Subd. 4.  [GRIEVANCE PROCEDURE.] (a) All contracts must 
include a grievance procedure providing for compulsory binding 
arbitration of grievances including all written disciplinary 
actions.  If the parties cannot agree on the grievance 
procedure, they are subject to the grievance procedure 
promulgated by the commissioner under section 179A.04, 
subdivision 3, clause (h).  
    (b) Notwithstanding any home rule charter to the contrary, 
after the probationary period of employment, any disciplinary 
action, other than the termination of a teacher contract or the 
discharge of a teacher under section 125.12 or 125.17, is 
subject to the grievance procedure and compulsory binding 
arbitration. 
    (c) Employees covered by civil service systems created 
under chapter 43A, 44, 375, 387, 419, or 420, by a home rule 
charter under chapter 410, or by Laws 1941, chapter 423, may 
pursue a grievance through the procedure established under this 
section. When the grievance is also within the jurisdiction of 
appeals boards or appeals procedures created by chapter 43A, 44, 
375, 387, 419, or 420, by a home rule charter under chapter 410, 
or by Laws 1941, chapter 423, the employee may proceed through 
the grievance procedure or the civil service appeals procedure, 
but once a written grievance or appeal has been properly filed 
or submitted by the employee or on the employee's behalf with 
the employee's consent the employee may not proceed in the 
alternative manner.  
    (d) A teacher who elects a hearing before an arbitrator 
under section 2 or 4 or who elects or acquiesces to a hearing 
before the school board may not later proceed in the alternative 
manner nor challenge the termination or discharge through a 
grievance procedure required by this subdivision. 
    (e) This section does not require employers or employee 
organizations to negotiate on matters other than terms and 
conditions of employment. 
    Presented to the governor May 23, 1991 
    Signed by the governor May 27, 1991, 10:28 p.m.

700 State Office Building, 100 Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Blvd., St. Paul, MN 55155 ♦ Phone: (651) 296-2868 ♦ TTY: 1-800-627-3529 ♦ Fax: (651) 296-0569