25 CFR 38.8 - Nonrenewal of contract.
Where the determination is made that an employee's contract shall not be renewed for the following year, the following procedure will apply to those employees who have completed three full continuous school terms of service under consecutive contract appointments and satisfactory performance in the same or comparable education positions.
(a) The employee will be given a written notice of the action and the reasons thereof not less than 60 days before the end of the school term.
(b) The employee will be given 10 calendar days to request an informal hearing before the appropriate official or body. Upon request, the employee may be given official time, not to exceed eight hours, to prepare a written response to the reason(s).
(c) If so requested, an informal hearing shall be held within 30 calendar days of receipt of the request.
(d) The appropriate official or body will render a written determination within seven calendar days after the informal hearing.
(e) The employee has a right to request an administrative review by the ASE or AEPA of the determination within 10 calendar days of that determination. The ASE or AEPA then has 20 calendar days to render a final decision. Where the employee is the supervisor of the school or an agency education employee, any appeal of the ASE or AEPA would be addressed to the Director for a decision. If the Director or ASE's or AEPA's decision overturns the appropriate official or bodies determination, the appropriate official or body will be notified of the reasons in writing. Failure by the Director or ASE or AEPA to act within the 20 days will sustain the determination. This completes the administrative appeal process.
(f) Failure of any of the parties to meet the requirements of the above procedures will serve to negate the particular action sought by the negligent party.
(g) Those employees with less than three full continuous school terms of consecutive contract appointments are serving a probationary period. Nonrenewal of his/her contract will be considered a continuation of the examining process. This action cannot be appealed or grieved.
(h) Independent of the procedures outlined in this section, the school supervisor or ASE or AEPA, for applicable positions, shall be required to submit to the ASE or AEPA or appropriate higher authority all nonrenewal actions. Within 60 days, the ASE or AEPA shall review the nonrenewal actions and may overturn the determination of nonrenewal. In the event that the ASE or AEPA makes a decision to overturn the school board determination, the ASE or AEPA shall notify the school board in writing of his/her reasons for doing so.
(i) No more than the substantial standard of evidence shall be required to sustain the nonrenewal.
(j) A procedural error shall not be grounds for overturning a determination of nonrenewal unless the employee shows harmful error in the application of the Agency's procedures in arriving at such a decision. For purposes of this section, “harmful error” means error by the Agency in the application of its procedures which, in the absence or cure of the error, might have caused the Agency to reach a conclusion different than the one reached. The burden is upon the appellant to show that based upon the record as a whole, the error was harmful. i.e., caused substantial harm or prejudice to his/her rights.