A California judge ruled against tenure and other job protections for public school teachers in the Golden State.
Los Angeles County Superior Court Judge Rolf Treu said such laws are unconstitutional and harm children by saddling them with bad teachers.
Teachers have long argued that tenure helps preserve academic freedom and prevents administrations from hiring on a whim.
National Education Association President Dennis Van Roekel called the decision "deeply flawed" and argued retaining quality teachers will be a challenged.
The California Teachers Association plans to appeal the ruling.
Meanwhile, U.S. Secretary of Education Arne Duncan said in a statement: "My hope is that today's decision moves from the courtroom toward a collaborative process in California that is fair, thoughtful, practical and swift."
Russlynn Ali, former assistant secretary for civil rights at the U.S. Department of Education, agreed.
"We have an opportunity now to put the bickering aside, to put the adult interests aside, and to focus solely on what's right for the kids of this state with this decision that will reverberate far outside our borders," Ali said.