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PERB Finds District Acted Unlawfully–For the 18th Time

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For the 18th time since Jorge Aguilar became Superintendent of the Sacramento City Unified School District (SCUSD) in mid-2017, the California Public Employment Relations Board (PERB) issued a complaint against Aguilar and the District. You can view the complaint here.

Responding to a charge filed by SCTA in August 2021, PERB has determined that the District acted unlawfully on five counts:

  1. “Refusal to Bargain”: By refusing to bargaining over the use of COVID funds to improve services to students, provide smaller class sizes and enhance wages and benefits;
  2. “Refusal to Bargain”: By refusing to respond to SCTA’s June “Back to School Better” proposal, including Aguilar declaring that the District did not consider such a proposal “to be a negotiations proposal.”
  3. “Refusal to Bargain”: By refusing to respond to SCTA’s proposals for “ground rules” which you can view here, and included among other things that “Each party will provide answers, responses and make comments that are truthful and honest.”
  4. “Surface Bargaining”: According to PERB’s finding, SCUSD’s “negotiators lacked adequate authority” by, among other things, (a) being “unable to answer where its bargaining team was authorized to sign tentative agreements”; (b) refusing “to discuss its own compensation proposal, on the grounds that the ‘right people’ were absent”; (c) “many times [Pam] Manwiller [the SCUSD lead negotiator] and her team have said one thing, only to be countermanded by Superintendent Aguilar”; (d) engaged in “dilatory bargaining conduct” by being “unprepared to discuss or bargain” (e) “caused difficulty in conducting meaningful dialogue in negotiations” because its lead negotiator (Manwiller) “failed or refused or refused to participate via videoconferencing during negotiations”;
  5. “Failure to Provide Information”: By refusing to provide information of “any and all correspondence, including text messages and emails” between District administrators and the Sacramento County Office of Education (SCOE).

SCUSD has had the most PERB complaints issued against it of all 1037 school District in California.

After reviewing SCTA’s unfair practice charge over these issues and SCUSD’s lengthy response, PERB’s complaint means that its initial finding is that SCUSD did act unlawfully. The next step is an informal settlement conference. If the matter is not resolved there, a PERB administrative law judge will hear the case and render an opinion.

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