District Sunshines Reopeners for Contract

At Tuesday’s School board meeting the District presented it’s proposal for Contract re-openers. Which the board then voted and approved.
The following is the text quoted.”
Pursuant to the Collective Bargaining agreement between the District and Chapter 294 (INC) of the California School Employees Association, The District proposes to open the following contract articles.:
Article XV Layoff and re-Employment
* Layoff positions to reduce the Districts costs and to maintain fiscal solvency
Article XVII Hours Of Employment
* restructure the work year/day to reduce the Districts costs and to maintain fiscal solvency
* Salary schedule modifications and/or reductions to reflect the districts financial situation
Article XXI Health and Welfare
* Modifications to the Health and welfare benefit contributions/commitmemnt withh the District’s financial situation and to maintain the Districts fiscal solvency.
The District maintains the right to discuss additional items under Articles XV,XVIII,XIX,and XXI.

Now is the time for our membership to make their opinion heard.Untitled-14

Open Letter to the Board of Education June 23rd, 2009

Dear School Board and Dr Smith,

I have so many things that I would like to share with you yet there is so little time right now. There are so many experiences that I can bring to you from Myself and the other Classified workers to show you the Dedication and pride we all have to be PYLUSD employee’s.

Let me just begin here, I am Proud to be an employee of this award winning District.

It is one of the finest Districts in the state, and I know this to be true having met many people from other District that have good reason to be unhappy.

I also want to let you know that I am a Three time investor in this District. And what I mean is this, I was a Parent in this District, I am a Homeowner in Placentia and as such a taxpayer and Bond owner here, and I am an invested Classified employee.

I have a vested interest in the success or failure of this District which goes deeper than my paycheck.

All of us as District employees have the same vested interest that outsiders will never have.

Classified employee’s as you are well aware encompass the many area’s of vital support. We are the Custodians who clean and make safe our schools, Food service worker who feeds our children, we are the Maintenance worker who repairs our facilites, the Technology worker brings us into the 21st century, the School Bus Driver’s who safely transport our children a million miles a year, the Mechanics who keep it all running and the many Clerical staff workers who keep us on track and make sure we have all the T’s crossed and I’s dotted . We are the aides and Childcare Providers who take over from where the teacher’s leave off. We are all vitally important to the success of our students. We all work together to support the Students and the Teachers.

We all ensure the safety of the Children. We are necessary to the success of this district and we all perform our various duties and more out of dedication to our children.

All of us here in this room have an Obligation to the Children.

We are obligated and our sole purpose here is to provide the best that we are capable of giving.

It is our duty to provide the best education, the best guidance and make them as safe as we can.

To use a well worn phrase the Children are the leaders of tomorrow, and we must make them as prepared as possible.

In this terrible time of economic strife, sacrifice will be asked of all of us. No one group should be expected to shoulder the burden for us all. Rather we need to work as a team to carry this heavy load together.

Compromises will need to happen. We will all have to work for a common goal to weather this storm and come out with as little damage to our precious Children as possible.

We have all worked so hard to build this Strong, award winning district and we must do the best to preserve what we can.

I believe that we are all ready to collaborate and work together to preserve and to build a stronger District alongside of APLE and the Management of PYLUSD. This District belongs to all of us.

As equal shareholders of this District we need to come up with bold, creative ideas to find a solution.

We must enter this in a spirit of creativity and open mindedness and look everywhere for the right solution for us.

All of us must make a commitment to work together, to come out of this stronger than before.

We need to make this an opportunity to build upon and not to preside over the slow decline and failure of OUR district.

Thank You

Allyson Holt
CSEA Chapter President,
RPAC, Region 22, Area H

An Open Letter to California’s Legislator’s.

As the Chapter President of PYLUSD Chapter 293, I am submitting this letter for the use of any of our membership to strenuously protest both the further erosion of our jobs and the repeal of AB 1419 which affords school district employees with equal protections that are afforded other government agencies and their workers.
Please find the attached letter, and use it to voice your support and concern for our Children, schools and Classified jobs.
You may send this letter edited, or not or use it to form your own letter. Please personalize and sign this or similar letter with your name and address so they will see where we live.
Distribute it among other Classified employee’s and to Parent’s.
Following this letter are the names and phone numbers of local Legislator’s. Please look up your own if you live outside of Orange County.
You should be able to find the addresses, e-mail and even Sacramento addresses of these individuals online.
I will update you as more information becomes available.

Dear Sir or Madame,

I am writing to you today to stand in opposition to the proposed cuts to Education, put forward in the Governor’s latest budget Proposal
The Proposed cuts to Student Transportation will further erode our ability to provide adequate education to our neediest populations.
The poorest children will be forced to walk longer distances, or to stop attending at all, because they have no other means of transportation. This will affect the overall health of our school districts budgets through falling ADA numbers making it impossible to educate any of our children adequately. Furthermore, taking this action will be putting more of our children at risk as they walk to and from school. Lack of supervision, having to cross on foot more and more busy intersections and potential dangerous encounters with traffic and possibly put them at a greater exposure to child predators, gangs and even drugs.

Additionally this will result in greater numbers of qualified professionals being laid off, and burdening our already over taxed unemployment system.

This also brings me to the concept of repealing AB1419 which is simply granting Classified School Employee’s the same protections that are already afforded to other Government agencies. Contracting out jobs which are being performed by competent, trained, professional employee’s is not a step forward. It is a shameful way to deprive working families of Health benefits, which due to the Governors cuts will not be available to them elsewhere.
Many Classified worker’s are already the “working poor” and to support the repeal of AB1419 is to put more families on to public assistance.
Not to mention that the is a problem of oversight with contracted, work and to deny this fact is foolish and ignorant.
Look at the tragedy of the Metrolink crash earlier this year. The employer , Metrolink, had no control of what the contractor Veolia provided and people died.
To say that this won’t happen again is foolhardy.
When an employer, especially in a safety sensitive business such as Transporting our children, has direct control and knowledge of it’s workforce we all benefit, quality does cost a bit more as does safety.
Their are many examples to be had in the world of unscrupulous contractors who have ignored or rewritten the rules to suit their needs only to have it cost us more, whether that cost be monetary, injury or death.
Not everyone is honest. Not everyone is dishonest. Why should we as tax payers and Parents have to play the lotto with some thing as precious as our children.
The state of California has enough challenges to face without throwing the baby out with the bath water. Once we allow the gutting of our educational system how much money will it take to rebuild what we have spent so much time and effort to put into place originally? We must stand firm and say no to the destruction of the educational system in California and the rest of the country as well.
We need to preserve our educational system, to preserve the ability to compete in the world, as we train the leaders of tomorrow.

We all need to look at realistic ways to solve the problem and not put that solution on the backs of our children and our neediest populations.
We need to look at the fact that in education the biggest expense is not the support staff, and we need to acknowledge that a school cannot run with out the support staff.
I believe that we as citizens of the great state of California agree that there needs to be change and even some sacrifice’s.
But that sacrifice cannot be our children and their ultimate safety and well being.
Find your compromises somewhere else.
Allyson Page Holt

* Senator Denise Ducheny (D-San Diego) – (619)-409-7690
* Senator Bob Dutton (R-Rancho Cucamonga) – (909) 466-4180
* Senator Mark Leno (D-San Francisco) – (415) 557-1300 (Please thank him for his fight on contracting out)
* Senator Alan Lowenthal (D-Long Beach) – (562) 529-6659
* Senator Mimi Walters (R-Laguna Hills) – (949)-457-7333
* Assemblymember Noreen Evans (D-Santa Rosa), who chairs the Conference Committee – (707) 649-2307
* Assemblymember Kevin de León (D-Los Angeles) – (323) 225-4545
* Assemblymember Bob Blumenfield (D-Woodland Hills) – (818) 904-3840 (Please thank him also for his fight on contracting out)
* Assemblymember Jim Nielson (R-Gerber) (530) 223-6300
* Assemblymember Rodger Niello (R-Fair Oaks)-(916) 349-1995

Urgent Action Update from CSEA Governmental Relations: Contracting Our Jobs! Stop The Governer!

Immediate Action Needed to Stop the 65% Cut in School Transportation
School Transportation
Today the Budget Conference Committee took up the Governor’s proposals to cut funding for school transportation by 65% and to contract out classified school jobs.

As you may know, school transportation was funded in this past year out of the Public Transportation Account (PTA) outside the Prop 98 funding. The Governor now wants to take back that funding for the state’s General Fund to pay for debt service. The net effect is to reduce funding for the Home-to-School Transportation program by as much as 65%.

Contracting Out

In addition to the transportation cut, the Conference Committee also took up the Governor’s proposal to repeal SB 1419, CSEA’s sponsored bill that requires school districts to follow the same ten state guidelines for contracting out.

Senator Mark Leno (San Francisco) challenged the Governor’s staff on this proposal and argued that these guidelines are the same guidelines that every state agency has to comply with, and that there are some exceptions in law already that permits contracting out.

The Department of Finance officials argued that some larger school districts have been able to ‘maneuver’ around the law, but smaller school districts haven’t figured out how to get around this law so they cannot contract out. And that is why a repeal of the law is needed.

Senator Mimi Walters (Tustin) chimed in for the need to repeal SB 1419 and stated that one school principal in her district got three bids for $8,000 each for a carpet replacement, and ended up doing the work himself for $1,500 from Home Depot. She thinks that this anecdote supports the need to repeal the bill.

Assemblyman Blumenfield (Van Nuys) also challenged the Governor’s staff and stated that many times, the contrary is true, and that contracting out ends up costing more in the long-term.

The Committee did not take any formal actions on theses issues today.

CSEA Is Fighting Back

CSEA is strongly in opposition to these draconian proposals to cut education by the Governor. This past Monday, during a special public comment period by the Budget Conference Committee, CSEA members joined their colleagues in the Education Coalition to testify against the massive cuts to education and to oppose the transportation and contracting out proposals.


These proposals are outright attacks on classified employees. We urge all our members and staff to contact the Conference Committee and your local legislators with your own personal or district story with the following messages:

* Oppose contracting out classified school jobs. This is a mean-spirited attack on classified employees. It is simply a way to eliminate health and retirement benefits for school employees to squeeze out profits for corporations. The existing laws ensure that students are safe and taxpayer dollars are protected.

* Oppose cutting school transportation by 65%. This proposal would result in massive layoffs and puts student safety at risk. Many districts are making children walk further and further to schools. It also disproportionately hurt the neediest students.

Here are the names of the Conference Committee Members and their district’s phone contact. The budget conference committee is made up of five legislators from both the Assembly and Senate:

* Senator Denise Ducheny (D-San Diego) – (619)-409-7690
* Senator Bob Dutton (R-Rancho Cucamonga) – (909) 466-4180
* Senator Mark Leno (D-San Francisco) – (415) 557-1300 (Please thank him for his fight on contracting out)
* Senator Alan Lowenthal (D-Long Beach) – (562) 529-6659
* Senator Mimi Walters (R-Laguna Hills) – (949)-457-7333
* Assemblymember Noreen Evans (D-Santa Rosa), who chairs the Conference Committee – (707) 649-2307
* Assemblymember Kevin de León (D-Los Angeles) – (323) 225-4545
* Assemblymember Bob Blumenfield (D-Woodland Hills) – (818) 904-3840 (Please thank him also for his fight on contracting out)
* Assemblymember Jim Nielson (R-Gerber) (530) 223-6300
* Assemblymember Rodger Niello (R-Fair Oaks)-(916) 349-1995

Here’s a web link to get more information on these legislators or to find your own legislator:


What’s Next?

The Budget Conference Committee will continue their review of the Governor’s Budget proposals through this weekend. They are trying to make final decisions by mid-June given the state’s cash flow problem. We will provide you with updates as new information become available.

Unsung Heros Event

Below are the recipients of the CSEA “Unsung Hero’s” event; Meredith Castillo and Aydin Laghaie. Included are their individual responses.

[Author: Meredith Castillo]

On March 26, 2009, I received a card in the mail from CSEA Orange Field Office saying that I was to be
honored by Chapter 293 as an Unsung Hero at the Villa in Orange, a banquet facility, on May 1, 2009.
For me this was an extremely exciting and humbling recognition, since all of the E-Board members
put so much of their voluntary time in making Chapter 293 a professional union for all of its members.
All of the Unsung Heroes that were honored make such a fantastic difference in CSEA, it is impossible
to describe on paper.  It is an emotional experience when you hear of the accomplishments that all of
us make for a better working environment.
The fact that there were some administrators at the banquet to acknowledge the accomplishments
of the Unsung Heroes made it an even greater moment.
Again, it was an honor to be acknowledged as an Unsung Hero, and to get an award and plaque was a
moment I will never forget.
Meredith Castillo
Vice President
CSEA Chapter 293


[Author: Aydin Laghaie]

First of all let me express my gratitude to those of you who nominated me for this event, being thought of as one of your local CSEA Hero’s isn’t a title I ever expected nor could have seen coming. My efforts, time, and energy into championing what I believe in is who I am – and championing a cause which supports the rights of individuals to a fair work environment, brings forth pride in the work we do, and unites us closer together – just to name a few things Unions can do, makes them naturally an easy way of life for me.
For those of you unfamiliar with the “Unsung Hero[s] of CSEA” event, it’s a dinner held in Orange to honor individuals across Orange County and the surrounding areas. After a buffet style dinner, each chapter president introduces his/her chapter “Hero(s)” with a speech, the plaque is awarded, pictures are taken, and each chapter “Hero” is given a chance to share their experience and/or gratitude in receiving their award.
The speeches are by far the most interesting and inspiring. Each unique, but alike in the sense that hearing them made it evident to me, that I was in the presence of some very special people; individuals who in their own way have devoted a part of their lives to a greater cause. To borrow from a famous quote by Gandhi, they have become the change they wanted to see in the world – and thus have made a difference.
At a time when people wait for leadership, or look to others for hero’s, I was in a room full of people who stopped waiting and looking, and instead took up their share for change. It was an experience I will never forget, and am honored to have been a part of.

Aydin Laghaie
Chapter Webmaster and E-Board Member
Job Duties: Technology Service Technician
Placentia Yorba Linda Unified School District