LA Unified plans to return to full, in-person learning five days a week for the 2021–2022 school year, unless pandemic conditions change for the worse.

LA Unified plans to return to full, in-person learning five days a week for the 2021–2022 school year, unless pandemic conditions change for the worse.

The UTLA Bargaining Team has been negotiating to maintain important safety conditions both for the fall and also for the thousands of UTLA members and students whose programs continue through the summer.

We have just reached a tentative agreement with LAUSD on safety protocols and other conditions for the full physical reopening of schools for the 2021–2022 school year. The agreement is subject to ratification by UTLA members and would be effective beginning June 23. Below is a summary of the agreement.

The major elements of the tentative agreement include:

  • Maintaining necessary concrete, enforceable COVID protocols from the current agreement.
  1. COVID testing: Minimum requirement of every two weeks for 20% of students and staff per school while county is in yellow tier, but the district will continue weekly testing of all students and staff working at school sites through the summer; we will continue discussions with district over fall testing plans based on evolving pandemic conditions
  2. Daily symptom screening
  3. Ventilation: Monthly inspection and continued use of higher rated MERV 13 filters until at least October 1
  4. Daily cleaning and disinfecting
  5. Mask requirement for students, staff, and visitors (either party can open negotiations on this issue after September 1, 2021)
  6. Paid leave for those required to quarantine
  7. Continued ability for high-risk staff to request reasonable accommodations in the online program
  • Physical distancing: Changing conditions, including the increase in vaccinations and reduction in infection rates as well as the need to physically accommodate a full return of students, required adjustments to the physical distancing requirements in our hybrid agreement. Physical distancing requirements will be governed by the county guidelines, which are currently 3 feet.
  • No displacement of any UTLA-represented staff for the 2021–2022 school year. Those educators who have been in danger of displacement will now be able to remain at the school for the 2021–2022 school year.
  • Stabilization of Special Education programs: Special Education teachers assigned to special day programs will be maintained as long as classes have over 50% enrollment. Special Education teachers who are assigned as Resource Specialists will be maintained.
  • Limiting combo classes: LAUSD must make every effort to avoid combo classes. Those required to teach a combo class will receive a $1,200 stipend for the extra work.
  • Increased Training Pay Rate: From $25 to $50 an hour, permanently.
  • Expanded online-only independent study program following the City of Angels model and using a mix of daily live synchronous learning and independent work.
  • Sideletter on instructional minutes for those schools voting for 4×4 or 2X8 block schedules confirming that the required average weekly instructional minutes for those schools will be 1,350.
  • Agreement to immediately begin the process for 2021–2022 reopener negotiations on salary and additional items.

The tentative agreement will be voted on by UTLA members. Dates and details of the ratification vote will be announced early next week. There will be an all-city Chapter Leader meeting on Monday from 6:00–7:30 pm, with the meeting link coming later.

This agreement addresses the urgent issues facing educators returning full time to classrooms and other assignments. We will use 2021–2022 contract reopener negotiations and our full contract campaign to fight for additional improvements and to make sure that the temporarily increased state and federal funding is put to good use to support the healthy, healing, racially just schools our students deserve.