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New to BUSD Teachers

Frequently Asked Questions About New To BUSD Rehiring

Section 1: Temporary Teachers

If I have received a letter from BUSD saying that I have been released as a temporary teacher as of June 7, 2021. What are my rights?  

The vast majority of temporary teachers in BUSD are rehired for the next year, and are typically hired on a Probationary 2 contract.  While this letter can be alarming, we encourage you to keep this statistic in mind.

State Education Code does not give temporary teachers due process rights and the layoff process does not cover temporary teachers.  Temporary teachers can be released with a simple letter from the employer.  Typically teachers are on temporary contracts due to another teacher being on leave or being in a special assignment. As Human Resources sorts the people returning from leave the situation will become more clear for temporary teachers.

If I am temporary, when will I know if I am going to be rehired by BUSD?

BFT is advocating strenuously that temporary teachers the District wishes to rehire be notified as soon as possible, and that these teachers be offered Probationary 2 contracts (which means they are on the road to becoming a permanent teacher the first day of their third year in BUSD).  There is not a specific date by which BUSD has to rehire anyone they wish to rehire, but of course the labor market for educators is very tight right now, and BUSD will need to move quickly in order to retain its excellent teachers. The temporary teacher rehire process should begin no later than April.

Do I have any rights to be rehired by BUSD?

You have no legal rights to be rehired, but you should be sure to let your principal know that you hope to be rehired in BUSD. Temporary teachers interested in being rehired do not have to complete an entire new application packet. You will be asked to resign a Probationary contract for next year.

Does my temporary release mean that BUSD does not think I am a good teacher?

Not necessarily, BUSD will release ALL teachers on a temporary contract.  The best way to judge the likelihood that you will be rehired if a position exists is to look at your 2020-2021 evaluation.   

BFT is advocating strenuously that BUSD rehire all temporary teachers the District wishes to rehire quickly given the very competitive labor market for teachers in the Bay Area.

Why was I hired on a temporary contract?

The Education Code allows districts to hire a number of temporary teachers to match the number of teachers on leave, and the number of teachers in positions paid for by “soft” categorical money.  

Will I be paid during July?

Yes, July pay is for the work you have already done during the 2020-2021 school year.

What happens to my benefits if I am not rehired by BUSD?

If you work through June 7, 2021 your benefits will continue through July 31, 2021.  You are eligible to stay in the BUSD group coverage plan at your own expense for 18 months after July 31, 2020 under a federal law called COBRA. 

If I work in BUSD next year, does my 2020-2021 temporary service count toward becoming permanent?  

If you work more than 75% of the days of the 2020-2021 school year, your temporary service can count toward becoming permanent if you are rehired by BUSD on a Probationary 2 contract for 2021-2022.  Only one year of temporary service can count toward becoming permanent.  

How can I be sure I am not on a temporary contract if I am rehired for next year?

The only way to be sure is to carefully review the contract you are offered this Spring, and to request a probationary contract. BFT is advocating strenuously that all temporary teachers who are rehired should be placed on a probationary contract in their second year.

This is a stressful situation.  Is there any FREE support available to me?

Yes.  The Employee Assistance Program is FREE and completely confidential for all BUSD employees and their family members.  You can access the services available through the Claremont provider by calling 800-834-3773.  There are legal, financial and counseling services available though this program.  For more information, see the FAQ called “Employee Assistance Program” on the BFT website.

In addition, you can receive support from your BFT Site Rep, or by emailing BFT at president@berkeleyteachers.org.  Unless your question is sensitive, please cc your Site Rep on the email to BFT.

If I am not rehired, am I eligible for unemployment insurance payments?

You may be eligible for unemployment benefits; the best way to find out is to apply.  If you are not rehired by June 1, 2021 please contact BFT to request our “Quick Tips” on filing for unemployment insurance.

If I am not rehired by BUSD what happens to my accrued sick leave?

 If you go to employment in another California K-12 school district your accrued sick leave is transferred to your new district.   If you do not go to another California K-12 district your sick leave stays with BUSD and becomes part of your retirement service credit when you retire.  It is a good idea to get a confirmation of your current sick leave balance from BUSD by requesting, via email, a copy of your “STRS Express Benefit” form.  You can email this request to Betty James in the Human Resources office via email. When you retire under STRS all unused sick leave contributes to your retirement.

Section 2: Probationary 1 and 2 Teachers

Do I have any rights to be rehired by BUSD?

If you are a Probationary 2 teacher, you should be notified by March 15th if you are going to be released or not. Typically you are offered a chance to resign your position before that date if the District is planning on non-reelecting you. If you are a Probationary 1 teacher, the District has until the end of the year to notify that you are being released, but if they don’t, you will be rehired for the next year. Typically, you do not need to sign a new contract if you are Probationary 1 or Probationary  2 unless you never signed a probationary contract in the past.

If I am Probationary 1, when will I know if I am going to be rehired by BUSD?

BFT is advocating strenuously that Probationary 1 teachers the District wishes to rehire be notified as soon as possible. There is not a specific date by which BUSD has to rehire anyone they wish to rehire, but of course the labor market for educators is very tight right now, and BUSD will need to move quickly in order to retain its excellent teachers. You should know by April if you are not going to be rehired. You can also ask your administrator your status although they may not know for certain until leave requests are granted and budget reduction decisions have occurred.

If I receive a letter saying I will be non-reelected, what should I do?

If you are a probationary teacher being non-reelected, you should be given a chance to resign instead. You must do so by March 15th. BFT recommends you resign instead of being non-reelected. Please contact BFT at 510-549-2307 if you have questions about this.

Will I be paid during July?

Yes, July pay is for the work you have already done during the 2020-2021 school year.

What happens to my benefits if I am not rehired by BUSD?

If you work through June 7, 2021 your benefits will continue through July 31, 2021.  You are eligible to stay in the BUSD group coverage plan at your own expense for 18 months after  July 31, 2021 under a federal law called COBRA. 

This is a stressful situation.  Is there any FREE support available to me?

Yes.  The Employee Assistance Program is FREE and completely confidential for all BUSD employees and their family members.  You can access the services available through the Claremont provider by calling 800-834-3773.  There are legal, financial and counseling services available though this program.  For more information, see the FAQ called “Employee Assistance Program” on the BFT website.

In addition, you can receive support from your BFT Site Rep, or by emailing BFT at president@berkeleyteachers.org.  Unless your question is sensitive, please cc your Site Rep on the email to BFT.

If I am not rehired, am I eligible for unemployment insurance payments?

You may be eligible for unemployment benefits; the best way to find out is to apply.  If you are not rehired by June 1, 2021 please contact BFT to request our “Quick Tips” on filing for unemployment insurance.

If I am not rehired by BUSD what happens to my accrued sick leave?

If you go to employment in another California K-12 school district your accrued sick leave is transferred to your new district.   If you do not go to another California K-12 district your sick leave stays with BUSD and becomes part of your retirement service credit when you retire.  It is a good idea to get a confirmation of your current sick leave balance from BUSD by requesting, via email, a copy of your “STRS Express Benefit” form.  You can email this request to Betty James in the Human Resources office via email. When you retire under STRS all unused sick leave contributes to your retirement.
 

Updated 2/10/21