A principal filed a grievance, complaining about the district's decision to reassign her as a classroom teacher. The district's board of trustees denied the grievance and she appealed to the commissioner of education.
The Texas Education Code states that if a school district does not propose to nonrenew an employment contract, it is required to employ that educator in the same "professional capacity" for the following school year. The principal argued that the district was not permitted to reassign her as a classroom teacher because she was employed in the professional capacity of a principal and that the district could not reassign her outside of that role without nonrenewing her contract.
The commissioner noted that a principal's duties are specifically defined in the law and that she was not performing those duties while working as a classroom teacher. Therefore principals and teachers are not in the same professional capacity. The principal was entitled to be employed in the same professional capacity when the district renewed the contract, the commissioner said. The district violated the law when it reassigned the principal to a classroom teacher position.