The Vergara case reflects just the start of opportunities for action in other states, where many leaders are searching for better ways to evaluate teachers.

In 37 states, including New York, states still make decisions on whether to grant tenure — protected employment — to teachers in three years or less.

In 33 states — again, including New York — states do not consider classroom performance in deciding which teachers go in a systemwide layoff. Instead of merit, they favor length of service.

And in 38 states, the cumbersome teacher dismissal process allows multiple appeals. This is not due process; it is an undue burden on those trying to protect teacher quality. And it can be dangerous. In New York, even teachers accused of sexual misconduct have stayed on the job.