Bargaining Update: Tuesday, January 18

Bargaining Update: Tuesday, January 18

Bargaining Update: Tuesday January 18

Today the negotiating teams met. Summary –
Article II – Recognition of Exclusive Representation
Adding – School & Guidance Counselors & Psychologists
Excluding – Head Counselors & Lead Psychologists
Article IV – Association Rights
Use of cell phones for business & personal use.
Article V – Days And Hours of Employment
The District presented concepts for a full day Kindergarten. The proposals are predicated by the California Department of Education – Ed Code – 8281.5  (B) Develop a plan for consideration by the governing board or body at a public meeting on or before June 30, 2022, for how all children in the attendance area of the local educational agency will have access to full-day learning programs the year before kindergarten that meet the needs of parents, including through partnerships with the local educational agency’s expanding learning offerings, the After School Education and Safety Program, the California state preschool program, Head Start programs, and other community-based early learning and care programs.

In short, the legislature has provided resources to school districts to implement “Universal Transitional Kindergarten” [“Kindergarten” includes Transitional Kindergarten, as defined in Education Code 48000 Section (d) For purposes of this section, “transitional kindergarten” means the first year of a two-year kindergarten program that uses a modified kindergarten curriculum that is age and developmentally appropriate. (e) A transitional kindergarten shall not be construed as a new program or higher level of service.

The District is currently piloting full-day Kindergarten at some sites for the 2021-22 school year. The TALB bargaining team made an information request for all of the participants in this year’s pilot and all the potentially impacted Kindergarten teachers. Once this data is secured we will hold Zoom forums to flesh out the plus / delta of the current program and how to implement a global program for the entire District.
Deja vu? Yes, back on January 15, 2020 a forum has held at Longfellow ES to discuss the implementation of a District wide full-day Kindergarten. At that time, legislation had not mandated school districts provide access. Next school year, 2022-23 that will be different.

Kinder Forum 1/26 Wednesday via Zoom 4:30-6:00 RSVP vcastillo@talb.org
1/31 Monday via Zoom 4:30-6:00 RSVP 
vcastillo@talb.org

  • Acknowledging adjunct duties of TALB Representative, reduce overall hours of adjunct duties.
  • Replacement Service – include elementary teachers in remuneration.
  • Mileage – update language to reflect itinerate travel.
  • Adjust the amounts for valuables or vehicle damage while on duty.
  • Providing enhanced safety for staff.
  • Investing in more nursing services for sites.
Article X Class Size & Staffing Ratios
  • Compensation for combination classes.
  • Limit number of preparation periods.
  • Multi-site limits for itinerants.
  • Parameters for Block Schedule vs. Traditional 6 period day.
Article XII Evaluation 
  • Providing clarity surrounding the 5 year alternate evaluation cycle.
  • Moving to all electronic evaluations.
Compensation
  • The District & TALB will discuss compensation, for the 2021-22 school year, at the next negotiations meeting, Friday, February 4, 2022.
  • Adjust Pathway Leads – compensation.

Breaking News: Monday, January 10, 2022

Breaking News: Monday, January 10, 2022

TALB Update: Monday, January 10, 2022

Breaking News

  • Starting, Tuesday, January 11, 2022 – There will be a specific line and table for COVID-19 testing LBUSD employees @ Cabrillo High School. We are working on additional sites with the Long Beach Health Department. Click here for the flyer. Exploring the availability/feasibility of expanding weekly school site testing for employees.
  • Consider double masking. Cloth masks do not provide the same level of protection. Request voice amplifier if needed.
  • Configure classroom to maximize space (particularly if there is low attendance that day.)
  • Weather and facility dependent – use outdoor spaces to hold class instruction.
  • (Tentatively) Employee Vaccine Booster Clinic @ TRC on Fridays from 2:30-5:30 – Information from District coming soon.
  • At-Home COVID tests are being delivered to LBUSD, haven’t arrived yet. Once they arrive they will be distributed to sites. When specifics are available we’ll provide an update.

 

Surgical Grade Masks

Given that the Omicron variant of COVID-19 is highly transmissible, it is recommended that faculty and staff wear surgical grade masks. The District is reporting that ALL sites should have these masks on site (picture above) and are currently available. Cloth masks do not provide the same level of protection. If you do not have access to these masks, let TALB know at 562-426-6433.

 


Exclusionary Pay – An employee who was excluded from work because of a workplace COVID-19 exposure. If you were sent home from work for exposure or told to quarantine from October 1, 2021 going forward, you may now recoup those sick days.
Worker’s Compensation Pay – An employee who became ill with COVID-19 and can reasonably attribute their work location as the nexus of exposure and infection from October 1, 2021 going forward, may now recoup those sick days. How to document you were infected at work? A staff general notification of exposure, administrative communique of exposure, parent/student contact notification of COVID-19 positive.
The District is currently updating the process to claim this leave. Check with the website here.

You help make TALB a stronger voice for teachers, counselors, speech language pathologists, psychologists, nurses and librarians.


PUBLIC SCHOOL EMPLOYEE LEAVES FOR COVID-19
Exclusion Pay & Cal/OSHA’s Emergency Temporary Standards (ETS)
California’s Division of Occupational Safety and Health (Cal/OSHA) passed Emergency Temporary Standards (ETS) related to COVID-19 that require employers to continue to provide full pay, benefits, and other employment rights (including job status) for employees who are excluded from the worksite due to a work-related COVID-19 exposure or positive COVID-19 test. Typically, the ETS require employers to exclude and continue to pay employees during the period of quarantine, which could be up to fourteen days.
• Under the ETS, an employer is not required to exclude a fully-vaccinated employee who has a close contact with an infected individual unless the employee has a positive COVID-19 test or the employee develops COVID-19 symptoms. Employers are not required to provide these benefits if the employer can demonstrate that the employee’s close contact with an infected individual was not work-related. Employees are not entitled to exclusion pay if they receive pay because they are reassigned to work from home or receive workers’ compensation during the exclusion period. An employer may require employees to use employer-provided employee sick leave before providing exclusion pay. The ETS went into effect on November 30, 2020, were readopted on June 17, 2021, and are currently scheduled to expire on January 14, 2022. See Cal/OSHA’s COVID-19 Emergency Temporary Standards FAQs on Exclusion Pay.

FMLA & California Family Rights Act (CFRA)
FMLA (federal statute) and CFRA (state statute) provide up to 12 weeks of unpaid leave in a 12-month period for:
• Employee’s own serious health condition;
• Family member’s serious health condition; or
• Child bonding within first year of birth; adoption, or foster care. To qualify, an employee must have worked at least 12 months and 1,250 hours in the preceding 12 months. COVID-19 should qualify as a “serious health condition” if it results in hospitalization, continuing treatment or supervision by a medical provider, or another serious condition such as pneumonia. Because CFRA does not cover pregnancy as a serious health condition, and California Pregnancy Disability Leave (PDL) separately provides leave for an employee disabled by pregnancy, an eligible employee can take pregnancy-disability leave in addition to a 12-week child bonding leave.
• Note: The CDC identifies pregnancy as a condition that might cause increased risk for severe illness from COVID-19. See CDC website.
See Department of Fair Employment and Housing website.

California Education Code (EC)
EC 44984 – Industrial Accident & Illness Leave
An employee whose workers’ compensation claim is approved is entitled to at least 60 days of full salary (when combined with temporary disability payments received for an approved workers’ compensation claim). After this leave is exhausted, the employee is entitled to sick leave and differential pay leave.
EC 44978 – Sick Leave
10 days per year for full-time employees for illness or injury; pro-rated if part-time. Accumulates from year to year. Credit for sick leave need not be accrued by the employee prior to taking sick leave so it may be taken at any time during the school year.
EC 44981 – Personal Necessity Leave
In any school year, 7 of the 10 sick days allowed under EC 44978 may be used by an employee, at their election, for personal necessity, which includes the serious illness or death of the employee’s immediate family member, an accident involving the employee’s person or property, or an accident involving the person or property of an immediate family member.
EC 44977 – Differential Pay Leave / Statutory Leave
Provides up to 5 school months of differential pay due to illness or accident after exhausting all annual and accumulated sick leave. Under EC 44983, employee must be paid at least 50 percent of regular pay after exhausting sick leave.
Other Leaves
The governing board of a public school employer may grant a leave of absence to any employee who is absent because of accident, illness, or quarantine which results from contact with other persons having a contagious disease while performing work. See EC 44964, EC 87765, EC 45199, EC 88199.
Under California Labor Code sections 233 and 246.5 (“kin care” law), an employee may use accrued and available sick leave—up to the amount that would accrue during a six-month period—to attend to the diagnosis, care, or treatment of a covered family member (as defined in Labor Code section 245.5). See
Labor Commissioner’s website.

CTA members who are enrolled in CTA-endorsed Voluntary Disability Insurance through The Standard may be entitled to benefits as a result of the member’s own disabling condition. The Standard will determine whether the member’s receipt of paid sick leave impacts their approved claim based on the specific claim facts and the applicable policy provisions. For more information, contact The Standard at 800-522-0406 or visit CTAMemberBenefits.org/disability. CalSTRS Disability may be available to eligible unit members. See CalSTRS website.
REASONABLE ACCOMMODATIONS FOR DISABLED PERSONS UNDER THE ADA
The federal Americans with Disabilities Act, 42 U.S.C. § 12101 et seq.; 29 C.F.R. §§ 1630 et seq. (ADA) and California Fair Employment and Housing Act, Cal. Gov’t Code §§ 12900-12996 (FEHA)
What employers are covered?
ADA prohibits disability discrimination by employers with 15 or more employees.
FEHA prohibits disability discrimination by employers with 5 or more employees.
Several ADA and FEHA rights overlap. FEHA has some stronger state law-based protections.
What disabilities are covered?
A qualifying “disability” can be a mental disability and/or a physical disability that limits one or more major life activities. This can include impairments of major life activities such as caring for oneself, performing manual tasks, seeing, hearing, eating, sleeping, walking, standing, lifting, bending, speaking, breathing, learning, reading, concentrating, thinking, communicating, and working. This can also include impairments of major bodily functions such as functions of the immune system, normal cell growth, digestive, bowel, bladder, neurological, brain, respiratory, circulatory, endocrine, and reproductive functions. Individuals with a qualified disability that would make it medically contraindicated to receive a COVID-19 vaccine may be entitled, as a reasonable accommodation, to a medical exemption from a vaccine requirement, as long as the accommodation does not impose an undue hardship to the employer.
How do unit employees request a reasonable accommodation?
ADA/FEHA requires that employers (including school districts, county offices of education, community colleges, and charter schools) provide “reasonable accommodations” to persons with qualifying disabilities, and the law prohibits retaliation against employees for asserting their rights under ADA/FEHA. An employer is required only to provide reasonable accommodation to employees and applicants with a known disability. If the employer is not aware of an employee’s disability, the employee should inform the employer that they have a disability-related limitation and, due to that limitation, they may need a reasonable accommodation to perform their job. A reasonable accommodation request can include a request to telework/perform distance learning. Temporary use of sick leave or other paid or unpaid leave might also be a reasonable accommodation. The employer must engage timely and in good faith in an “interactive process” with the employee to determine if there is a reasonable accommodation that will allow the employee to perform the essential functions of their job. Under California labor law, an exclusive representative has a right to represent a unit employee in the interactive process. The interactive process requires an individualized assessment of the job and the physical or mental limitations of the individual that are directly related to the need for a reasonable accommodation. The interactive process is a collaborative on-going discussion to arrive at a reasonable accommodation that enables the employee to perform the essential assigned duties of their position. There are no formal procedures to an interactive process meeting. Sometimes the interactive process involves multiple meetings and conversations. An employer, however, is not required to provide a reasonable accommodation that imposes an “undue hardship.” An accommodation is considered an undue hardship when it requires significant difficulty or expense to adopt and implement. An employer can reject an accommodation that eliminates an essential function of the job.
Do I need medical documentation to request a reasonable accommodation? If so, what should it include?
An employer may request reasonable medical documentation that confirms the existence of a disability and the need for a reasonable accommodation. An employer may not request a specific medical diagnosis under FEHA. Medical documentation, however, should explain any disability-related limitations and possible accommodations that might enable the patient/employee to perform the essential functions of the job. The Department of Fair Employment and Housing (DFEH), the agency tasked with enforcing FEHA, recommends that employers temporarily waive medical documentation requirements if it is impracticable for an employee to reasonably obtain documentation of a COVID-19-related disability. See DFEH reasonable accommodation request form.
Where can I go to learn more about reasonable accommodations? See reasonable accommodation page on DFEH website. See Equal Employment Opportunity Commission Enforcement Guidance: Reasonable Accommodation & Undue Hardship Under the ADA.

WORKERS’ COMPENSATION
California Workers’ Compensation System, Cal. Lab Code § 3200 et seq.
With few exceptions, the Workers’ Compensation system is the sole and exclusive remedy of an employee (or their dependents) against an employer for work-related death or injury. An eligible employee with a work-related injury or illness is entitled to partial wage replacement while they are recovering. A covered employer will also be required to pay for the employee’s medical treatment.
Senate Bill 1159 provides that all California employees who work outside their home at the direction of their employer between July 6, 2020 and January 1, 2023 and who test positive for COVID-19 within 14 days of working at their jobsite during an outbreak at their specific workplace are presumed to have contracted any COVID-19-related illness at work for purposes of awarding workers’ compensation benefits. An outbreak exists if, within 14 days of an employee testing positive, one of the following occurs at a specific place of employment:
(1) four employees test positive if the employer has 100 employees or fewer;
(2) four percent (4%) of the number of employees who reported to the specific place of employment test positive if the employer has more than 100 employees; or
(3) a specific place of employment is ordered to close by a local public health department, the State Department of Public Health, the Division of Occupational Safety and Health, or a school superintendent due to a risk of COVID infection. See Cal. Labor Code § 3212.88.
If an employee does not qualify for the presumption under SB 1159, they may still be eligible to receive workers’ compensation benefits if they contracted COVID-19 at work. The employee will need to meet certain threshold requirements, including proving that their illness arose out of their employment.
If you believe you contracted COVID-19 through work, notify your employer as soon as possible and promptly file a workers’ compensation claim form with the employer.
Although the Group Legal Services Program does not cover Workers Compensation claims, TALB maintains a referral list of trusted employee-side Workers Compensation attorneys. TALB Staff can assist you if you wish to be referred to one of these attorneys. See Workers’ Compensation Presumption (SB 1159) FAQs, and California Division of Workers Compensation Guide to filing a Workers Compensation claim.

 


Bargaining Update: Wednesday, January 5

Bargaining Update: Wednesday, January 5

Bargaining Update: Wednesday, January 5

The TALB & LBUSD Bargaining Teams met all day today. School safety was the primary focus, although we had a lengthy conversation surrounding the District’s financial footing and exchanged contract proposals on language for Counselors and Psychologists.

Exclusionary Pay & Worker’s Compensation
From January 1, 2021 through September 21, 2021 employees had access to COVID-19 supplementary sick leave under labor Code 248.2. (80 hours or 10 working days.) This could be used for:

  • Caring for Yourself: The covered employee is subject to a quarantine or isolation period related to COVID-19 (see note below), or has been advised by a healthcare provider to quarantine due to COVID-19, or is experiencing symptoms of COVID-19 and seeking a medical diagnosis.
  • Caring for a Family Member: The covered employee is caring for a family member who is either subject to a quarantine or isolation period related to COVID-19 (see note below) or has been advised by a healthcare provider to quarantine due to COVID-19, or the employee is caring for a child whose school or place of care is closed or unavailable due to COVID-19 on the premises.
  • Vaccine-Related: The covered employee is attending a vaccine appointment or cannot work or telework due to vaccine-related side effects.

This expired on October 1, 2021.
Today, the District has made a commitment to provide exclusionary pay and worker’s compensation pay retroactive to October 1, 2021. What does that mean?
Exclusionary Pay – An employee who was excluded from work because of a workplace COVID-19 exposure. If you were sent home from work for exposure or told to quarantine from October 1, 2021 going forward, you may now recoup those sick days.
Worker’s Compensation Pay – An employee who became ill with COVID-19 and can reasonably attribute their work location as the nexus of exposure and infection from October 1, 2021 going forward, may now recoup those sick days. How to document you were infected at work? A staff general notification of exposure, administrative communique of exposure, parent/student contact notification of COVID-19 positive.
Details are still being fleshed out and we hope to have more specifics by Friday, January 7, 2022. This should help those who have lost accrued leave since October 1, 2021 and help those going forward who need to quarantine or become ill with COVID-19 during this omicron variant surge.

Staff Meetings
The District agreed to have the mandated 4 hours of meetings a month be held via zoom until further notice. The caveat being they were not confident that communication to all site administrators could be accomplished this week. To give credit where credit is due, some site managers have already made this week’s staff meeting virtual. If you are at a site where your administrator is being proactive, please thank them. By Friday, the District is confident all sites will be informed that ALL staff meetings will be virtual via zoom.

Testing for COVID-19
The Association has been inundated with calls and emails regarding the unavailability of COVID-19 tests. Whether it be at the site level or for personal use. Hind sight is always 20/20 and the proverbial adage – “would of, could of, should of” comes to mind. Large systems, like Los Angeles Unified (how often do we point to LAUSD as an example?) committed resources earlier in the pandemic to test all students and staff. It is unfortunate that LBUSD did not make that same commitment. From our understanding, it was not because of a lack of resources but a lack of political courage to truly mandate all students and staff be tested. If you remember in the fall, parents had to opt their child into testing. So while we used to have testing, it really wasn’t testing, more like a random surveillance. Regardless, we are now at place where testing would provide students and staff a modicum of safety even if we know it is a false sense of security. Right now in L.A. county every person who is infected is spreading it to two other people on average. By the time people get test results (48-72 hours) they may have been infected with omicron or the flu, which some genius has named “flurona”.

In any event, LBUSD and TALB have reached out to civic leaders in the City of Long Beach to determine if they have COVID-19 testing capacity. We would not be surprised if they don’t. At home kits promised by the Governor have not arrived yet. The Long Beach Health Department has not fully revised their new COVID-19 regulations to mirror those that Los Angeles County Health Department have instituted. And it doesn’t help that both the County and the City Health Departments decided to revise their protocols on New Year’s eve, two days before school returned on Monday. If you feel a much more robust testing protocol should be implemented please write the Governing Board of Education. Their next meeting is schedule for January 19, 2022 @ 5:00 p.m.
Dr. Juan Benitez – President – – jbenitez1@lbschools.net 562-997-8240
Megan Kerr – Vice-President – mmkerr@lbschools.net 562-997-8240
Erik Miller – Member – EMiller1@lbschools.net   562-997-8240
Diana Craighead – Member – dcraighead@lbschools.net 562-997-8240
Doug Otto – Member – Doug Otto – DOtto@lbschools.net 562-997-8240

 

Postponed: TALB at Martin Luther King Parade

Postponed: TALB at Martin Luther King Parade

Join Team TALB to Celebrate Our Rights and Heritage.

Long Beach Martin Luther King Jr. Parade
Saturday, January 15th, 2022  9:30am.

The 2022 MLK Parade has been postponed due to COVID/Omicron!  The city hopes to reschedule in February.  Stay Tuned!

It’s important for all teachers, nurses, librarians, and SLPs to come together and be visible in the community. Plan to walk at the annual Martin Luther King Jr. parade with your colleagues to demonstrate our support for the human and civil rights of all people. This also encourages public support for us as educators.

Team TALB will be represented at the Parade. Time and location to assemble are still in the work.
RSVP/Sign Up and we will email the information to you.

Invite your colleagues and your family!  You’ll be glad you participated!

Sign Up Here

 

Jan 28 – CTA Scholarship Programs for Educators & Students Application Deadline

Jan 28 – CTA Scholarship Programs for Educators & Students Application Deadline

CTA Scholarships, Grants and Awards Programs for Educators and their Families

CTA offers several different educational scholarships, grants and awards to members and their dependents throughout the academic year.

Below are some of the major CTA awards and links to more information and applications.

 

 

 

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Feb 22 – Mar 4 – TALB General Elections 2022

Announcement of TALB General Elections 2022
February 22 – March 4, 2022

Upcoming TALB Elections will be held for important positions in TALB:

TALB Officers including

  • Secretary 
  • Treasurer

Nominations are open to all TALB members.

TALB Executive Board Area Directors for:

  • Cabrillo Secondary Director
  • Jordan Area Secondary Director
  • Lakewood Area Elementary Director
  • Millikan Area Elementary Director
  • Poly Area SecondaryDirector
  • Wilson Area SecondaryDirector
  • Lakewood Area Secondary Director (Filling vacant position until 6/19/2023)

Nominations are open to TALB members who work in each area.

  • Minority – At-Large – Director

Nominations are open to all TALB members who are American/Indian/Alaskan Native, Asian/Pacific Islander, African American or Hispanic
The term for each office is from June 20, 2022 – June 17, 2023. 

1 CTA State Council Representative
Nominations are open to all TALB members.  The term for each CTA State Council Representative is 2022 – 2025

18 Delegates to the NEA Representative Assembly in Dallas, TX  Nominations are open to all TALB members to serve a single term for 2022.  The term for each NEA Representative is July 2nd – July 6th, 2022

Candidacy declaration forms and election materials are available at TALB.org/forms-and-documents/ on Tuesday, January 25, 2022. Elections forms and documents will also be disseminated in the January 25, 2022 ETK-12 Representative Council packet. 


TALB Election Calendar – Key Dates*   

To download full TALB Election Calendar:  https://talb.org/wp-content/uploads/2022/01/General-Election-Schedule-2022.pdf

Candidacy Declaration Forms Deadline:                     February 4, 2022 by 4:30pm

Electronic Voting and Written Ballots at TALB.        February 22 – March 4, 2022

Election Results Announced                                             March 4, 2022