New teacher they want to fire for budget shortfalls. Should I sign the paperwork?

I am a first year teacher in Florida. I just found out that the school district is having budgeting problems and my school is going to be “pink slipping” (a.k.a letting go) of all new teachers. When they do this they give you the paperwork and have you sign several documents agreeing to the conditions but they tell you in person that they will be rehiring you when the funds become available (so in their words it’s all a technicality because they say the funds always become available). I have not yet found out if I am being pink slipped but I heard the rumor today and just got an email from the principal requesting a meeting at the end of next week. I assume the worst and am concerned that if I sign this paperwork that it will go down on my record and look poorly if I attempt to get another job should the funds not become available for my rehire. Should I refuse to sign the paper work and are there any other options I should know about?


A concerned teacher

2 answers  |  asked Apr 15, 2011 3:26 PM [EST]  |  applies to Florida

Answers (2)

Phyllis Towzey
If they are going to lay you off for budgetary reasons, you likely don't have any choice in the matter. Refusing to sign the paperwork could disqualify you from rehire. My advice is to read the paperwork when it's presented to you, and if it makes sense to you, sign it. If you don't understand what it means, then ask for an explanation and if it's still not clear, ask if you can take it with you to have a lawyer review it before signing. The fact that you were laid off based on lack of seniority in a budget cutback won't reflect badly in the future. Good luck!

posted by Phyllis Towzey  |  Apr 18, 2011 2:35 PM [EST]
William Carnes
Unfortunately, all you have right now is speculation that you may be terminated. Before an attorney can advise you on whether to sign "paperwork" the attorrney must review the paperwork. I suggest you seek an attorney who can review the documents and advise you.

posted by William Carnes  |  Apr 16, 2011 05:37 AM [EST]

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