Complaints Filed Across the State

Today a group of CAVA teachers filed 69 complaints across the State with many of our Authorizing Districts. We anticipate that the Districts will respond promptly and take their oversight responsibility seriously as we ask them to address these issues. To view the specific complaints click the links below:

CAVA Fresno Complaints

CAVA Jamestown Complaints

CAVA Jefferson Complaints

CAVA Kings Complaints

CAVA Los Angeles Complaints

CAVA Maricopa Complaints

CAVA San Diego Complaints

CAVA San Joaquin Complaints

CAVA Sutter Complaints

 

Spring Cleaning: Making Sure Our Students and Colleagues Are Treated Right!

The last few months have been very busy. In addition to the PERB hearings we have already reported on, many of us have been working hard to address problems at our Spring Cleaningschool through legislative and regulatory avenues. We have also been helping advocate for our colleagues when facing poor decisions and unfair actions by CAVA administration. Some highlights:

Legislation: Visits to Sacramento to support important legislation and regulations that will help us make CAVA better for our students and our colleagues. These have included: testifying at the Advisory Commission on Charter Schools, the California State Board of Education, Assembly Education Committee, Senate Education Committee, as well as countless meetings with State Assembly and Senate Members where we have shared our experience at CAVA and discussed the changes that are needed to make this a better place to teach and learn.

testimony

 

 

 

 

 

District Oversight: Meetings with County Superintendents and district school boards to help ensure public resources that go to CAVA are spent wisely and focus on our classrooms. In recent weeks, this has included a discussion with the San Joaquin County Superintendent as well as a recent visit to the Meridian Elementary School District. There are many problems at CAVA and insufficient accountability. Slowly, that is starting to change.

San_Joaquin

Protecting our Colleagues: Too often our colleagues are faced with mistreatment by certain administrators, frequently following years of committed and selfless service at our school. Recently many of us have attended trainings on our legal rights and best tactics for our CAVA colleagues when faced with unfair actions by administration. We are keeping track of bad behavior and building our case for holding those responsible accountable.

If you have any questions about any of these areas of action, have been mistreated, or would like to help, let us know! You can reach us at cava.organizing.committee@nullgmail.com.

 

Statewide Charter Educator Strategy Meeting

In the end of April, union charter educators from all over California met in Los Angeles to plan the best ways we can coordinate to protect our students, our schools and our professions.   A large contingent of CAVA educators joined approximately 90 participants from over 30 schools as we planned bargaining, community outreach and organizing activities for the year to come. We were very excited to hear about the great work of teachers at Alliance College Ready Public Schools—a large chain of charter schools in Los Angeles—who are in the process of unionizing, and facing some of the same challenges that we have confronted over the last year. Our movement is growing as more and more charter educators stand-up for a voice in decisions that impact their schools!

Statewide Charter meeting

A Request From Teachers

Summer can be a stressful time for CAVA teachers. Those of us who have been with CAVA for a couple of years, or more, know that we often do not get our employment agreements until sometime during the summer, and summer means no paychecks. With this stressful time rapidly approaching, a group of teachers decided to come together and ask Human Resources to provide all staff with employment agreements by June 1st.  We think staff stability is good for our school and our students.  We know it is good for our families! You can see the letter, which was sent on 5/7/15, here.

Support for CAVA Teachers Growing! Sign our Online Petition

On May Day (May 1) we launched an online petition so parents, teachers and community members from different parts of country could offer their support for our efforts to unionize and negotiate a union contract that fixes the many problems here at CAVA.  We are already at almost 300 signatures after the first 24 hours!  You can sign our online petition here.  Also, send it to your friends and post it to your timeline!

K12 Inc. In Tennessee Set to Close

News out of Tennessee doesn’t look good for K12 Inc., as that state’s online school is scheduled to be shut down due to poor performance and other problems soon.  Here in California we are facing many serious problems as well.  That is why we are working so hard to address them.

TennesseeWe believe frontline teachers who are working with our students every day have insights and solutions to problems that can make our schools better.  We also believe administration at CAVA should do a much better job of recognizing what we have to offer and working with us to fix the problems here in California.  Unfortunately, administration does a poor job of taking our concerns seriously.  That needs to change.  Seeing what has happened in Pennsylvania, and now Tennessee, we hope it changes soon.

Have You Received a Call from an Organizing Committee Member?

Members of our Union Organizing Committee have been reaching out by phone to each and every one of our over 700 teachers this month.  We have a number of questions and updates.  If you have not yet heard from us, you can request a phone call by emailing us at cava.organizing.committee@nullgmail.comphone

So Good To See You!

It was great to see so many colleagues at our in-person meetings in Livermore and Santa Clarita today. We had a chance to have some very good conversations and put some names with faces, which is always fun. Today we distributed “I’m In” buttons and informational cards that provided the web address and a quick summary of who we are and what we are working towards. If you were not able to speak with an Organizing Committee member and would like to learn more, please reach out to cava.organizing.committee@nullgmail.com. Thanks to everyone who wore yellow today—it was a beautiful sight!

 

We have spoken to some teachers who are in favor of having a union at CAVA who are nervous to be openly supportive. All staff should feel free to wear buttons as well as talk about union issues with anyone during breaks, and before and after the meetings. We are well within our rights to do so, and remember—we are the majority, and together we will do great things.

 

We appreciate everyone’s support and look forward to the chance to connect on Wednesday at the meetings in Visalia and Oceanside. See you then!

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Calling All CAVA Teachers!

We are asking all teachers to wear yellow to your upcoming in person testing meetings as a show of support for the teachers union movement. Members of the union organizing committee will have “I’m in” pins to distribute as well and would love to talk with you, during lunch break, about the latest union news and answer any questions you may have.

Show your support!  Wear YELLOW!

PERB Hearing Update

On Friday, March 20th, The Public Employees Relations Board (PERB) concluded its hearing to determine if CAVA teachers are able to organize our union statewide as a group of educators with a single employer. Many of you will recall that CAVA administration, in an effort to slow down our efforts to make the improvements our students deserve, have argued that we have 11 different, independent employers. This issue is crucial in determining whether CAVA administration must recognize our union and begin bargaining a single contract with all of us.

The hearing was originally scheduled for three days (March 2-4), but the process of entering evidence and witness testimony took much longer than anticipated because the CAVA administrators, including Head of Schools, failed to recognize or acknowledge basic documents that are posted on CAVA’s web site or included in sharepoint! As a result, the PERB judge scheduled two additional days of hearing on March 19-20.

PERB March 2015Many witnesses were subpoenaed and interviewed under oath. Testimony was given about how CAVA started, how we are managed as one school, how our school board members are selected, our relationship with K12 Inc., and the process for how teachers are hired and how terminations are conducted.  Further evidence and testimony was provided about how teachers are assigned students across the state (with no regard for County boundaries) and how our salaries are allocated from funds across multiple “schools.” All of these points are critical in determining who our “employer” is. Boxes and boxes of documents demonstrating our “single employer” theory were entered into evidence.

When the hearing ended, the judge informed the parties that it would take about 3 weeks to get the hearing transcript, which she expected to be about 400-500 pages long. Once we receive the transcript, we will ensure that it is made readily available to all staff. After receipt of the transcript, our legal counsel and CAVA’s counsel will prepare post-hearing briefs arguing how the case should be decided. These briefs are due to the judge on May 20th. The judge assured the parties that this case will be expedited and she will give it priority over all other cases, but it will likely take many weeks after she receives the briefs to issue her decision.

The union organizing committee, together with our CTA legal counsel, feel confident that we presented a strong case demonstrating that CAVA is one school.

In the meantime, we must not wait idly for the decision. There is much work to be done. We have an in person professional development meeting coming soon. Please wear yellow to show your support of the CAVA teacher’s union! Also, many of us are working to make important improvements at our school by supporting legislation and better oversight to ensure more resources come to our classrooms. There will be plenty of opportunities for our colleagues to help.

We need you! It is only with your support and help that we will be victorious! Ask an organizing committee member or someone with and “I’m in” button how you can help!PERB March 2015