Legal Q&A
How is ATPE helping members facing RIFs?

Q: The current budget crisis has me fearing that my district will have to perform a reduction in force. What is ATPE doing to help members in this situation?

A. The Texas public education system is facing one of the greatest challenges it has ever faced as a result of looming funding shortfalls for the 2011-13 legislative biennium. ATPE is working with the Legislature to restore full funding and remains hopeful that funding levels will at least level off. Delays in reaching a resolution are placing many districts in the position of having to plan for the worst, part of which is notifying educators, as required by law, that their employment may be terminated in a reduction in force (RIF).

Because of the unprecedented number of educators and ATPE members affected by this crisis, the ATPE state staff has created the RIF Center, an online clearinghouse of helpful information related to the RIF process. On these special pages in the Protection section of, you’ll find information about ATPE’s advocacy efforts and a RIF Member Assistance Request Form that eligible ATPE members can use after they have received official notice that their district’s board has voted to propose nonrenewal of their contract due to a RIF.

The RIF Member Assistance Request Form was developed as an alternative way for ATPE members to request help one they have received official notice of nonrenewal. It was developed by ATPE staff members because we want to ensure that each individual member’s needs are met. This new form expedites the assistance process; once eligible members submit their forms, they will be referred directly to an attorney for assistance with their RIF notice.

Of course, eligible ATPE members with employment-related questions, concerns and problems, including RIF-related matters, can continue to contact the ATPE Member Legal Services Department through the normal means.

The legal information provided on this website is for general purposes only. It is not intended as a substitute for individual legal advice or the provision of legal services. Accessing this information does not create an attorney-client relationship. Individual legal situations vary greatly, and readers should consult directly with an attorney. Eligible ATPE members should contact the ATPE Member Legal Services Department using our online system, MLSIS.

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Essentials contains legislative advertising contracted for by Doug Rogers, Executive Director, Association of Texas Professional Educators, 305 E. Huntland Dr., Suite 300, Austin, TX 78752-3792, representing ATPE.