Tenure is a status for “professional employees” of public school entities in Pennsylvania that allows for greater protections from termination and layoffs. To gain tenure, an employee must serve three years in a school district or intermediate unit as a “temporary professional employee”, have a satisfactory rating during the last four months of the third year, and maintain appropriate certification.

When these requirements are met, the employee’s status is changed from “temporary professional employee” to “professional employee” and is entitled to a professional contract. 

Gaining tenure in Pennsylvania:

  • Must have 3 years of continuous service
  • Satisfactory rating during the last four months prior to obtaining tenure
  • Time counted toward tenure MUST be at the same institution
  • Can be granted for part-time or full-time employees
  • Must be working during the entire duration of the three year probationary period to be granted tenure
  • Substitute teaching (in any capacity) does not count toward tenure
  • Tenure is granted automatically once requirements have been met

PA School Code regarding tenure