Gov. Jan Brewer Monday signed a bill into law making it easier to fire some low-performing teachers.
The law allows experienced teachers to be placed on probationary status if they received the lowest rating on one yearly performance review. That status allows a school board to fire a teacher with little notice. Proponents say the measure will help remove bad teachers.
House Bill 2500 easily passed in the Republican-led House, but Senate Republicans and Democrats initially rejected it in a 15-14 vote. The Republican-led Senate eventually passed the bill, 19-11.
Critics say an overhaul of evaluations passed last year still isn't fully implemented and lawmakers shouldn't pass additional changes.
In other bill signings Monday:
Brewer approved a license plate that would raise money for public school teachers. The measure would award prizes to "extraordinary educators" through money raised on sale of the plates. The plates would cost $25, with most of the money honoring teachers who oversee activities or lessons for students in kindergarten and grades one through eight.
New charter school admission preferences for siblings and grandchildren of charter school employees became law. State law already allowed for admission preferences to returning students, their siblings and the children of charter school employees.
The Arizona Independent Redistricting Commission received additional funding. Brewer signed a bill giving the commission $635,000 for legal fees. The IRC is the target of several lawsuits challenging the district maps. A weeklong trial on the state Legislative maps was held in federal court last month. A three-judge panel could issue a decision at any time.