One of the most common questions posed to the MSTA Legal Department is “Can the district move me to a different class room/building/grade level without my consent?”
The question may come in different forms, but the answer is always based on the same logic. The district can transfer and reassign teachers at its pleasure, unless a teaching assignment is a part of the teaching contract. Unfortunately, teaching assignments are rarely, if ever, included in the teaching contract. Missouri statute spells out the basic requirements of a teaching contract to include items such as the beginning of the school year, the length of the school year and annual compensation. School districts can, and often do, add items to their general teaching contract, so it’s possible your district has made your teaching assignment part of your contract. Be sure to check the language of your contract and, if you have any questions, call the MSTA Legal Services Department for assistance. One other document may affect a district’s ability to transfer or reassign a teacher without the teacher’s prior consent: a collective-bargaining agreement.
Transfer/reassignment clauses are fairly common in collective-bargaining agreements, though they vary in scope and effectiveness. If your district has a collective-bargaining agreement, be sure to check if that document deals with transfers or reassignments.