Settlement Reached

In alignment with our core tenets, to promote the well-being of our members and to improve conditions of teaching and learning in Natomas, Association leadership filed a charge against the District to protect President release time per the contract.  President release time is utilized in a myriad of ways.  It is purposeful and useful for the President to visit members on school sites and in the workplace and to represent members in meetings with administration, just to name a couple of activities exercised  to establish parity with District administration.  When challenged as to the use of President release time, NTA filed a charge with the Public Employment Relations Board.  This is called an Unfair Labor Charge or Unfair Practice Charge.  

 In the course of time, disputes arose regarding charges to the Association for release time of the President and other members of the Association.   The Association regularly releases members from work to reach out to members, to address the needs and changes imposed upon members in the course of their work, i.e. new report cards.  The Association amended its initial charge to address the District’s characterization of what was owed. The District filed in court to recoup the charges they outlined were due.  

 Days before the Association’s charges were to be heard in PERB, NTA and the District reached a settlement agreement outlining how President’s release time is to be taken, and settling the dispute of money owed the District and to be charged the Association.  President’s release time will revert back to previous practices.

 NTA members, avail yourself of representation and engagement with your leadership as we strive to improve members working conditions and students’ learning condition in Natomas.  Together, we will actualize Natomas Unified School District as the destination District for teaching and learning.

Natomas Teachers’ Association Bargaining Update – March 18, 2019

March 18, 2019

  Natomas Teachers’ Association
Bargaining Update…

Keep Quality Teachers in Natomas Campaign

Students are the center of everything we do.

As NTA members, we are committed to the success and well-being of every student.

Please forward feedback to your negotiations team.

Kristen Rocha, Chair

Justin Vorhauer

Mara Harvey

Randy Hodge

Emilio Moran

Lydiana Alfaro

Achim Dangerfield



The following is a summary of the NTA proposals to keep NUSD competitive with other districts in the region

March 18th was our first bargaining session after sunshining in January/February. Below are the key proposals to the articles presented and the rationale supporting the needs for certificated personnel.


Article: Key Proposals NTA Rationale
Article I- Agreement
  • One year agreement was proposed
  • MOU documents attached in appendices
  • NTA will continue to gather information on current and proposed changes to working conditions. Bargaining language will then be proposed.
  • The NTA Special Education Task Force recommendations are to be reviewed in Spring 2020. This will inform future negotiations  
Article V- Hours
  • Collaboration time to be teacher/department directed
  • Compensation for lack of substitutes in elementary.
  • Duty every other week
  • Early release MOU presented for collaboration on Wed. TK-5/TK-8 schools
  • Clarify minimum vs early release day.
  • Provide support for teachers who must prepare and supply lessons and activities for additional students.
  • Provide more teacher directed collaboration time with an early release schedule for TK-5/TK-8 schools on par with other districts in the region.
  • Provide additional time for teachers to collaborate on best practices and to support new teachers in practice
Article IV- Salary
  • Seven (7%) increase on all salary schedules
  • Compress longevity (pay increase) steps to get to them sooner
  • Remove and compress Column 0 into Column 1 on salary schedule
  • Move Natomas Unified out of the bottom of the pack compared with all other districts in our area.
  • All bargaining unit members deserve an increase in salary
  • Be competitive with other district pay schedules.
  • Create incentives to retain experienced teachers.
  • Increase lifetime earnings for all
Article VI- Health and Benefits
  • Increased monthly district contribution of:  
    • $25/single; $50/emp + 1 $75/family
  • Provide individuals and families relief for the ever increasing cost of health care.
Article IX- Evaluation Procedures
  • Nurse Formal Observation Form proposed
  • Speech Language Hearing Specialist Formal Observation Form proposed
  • Ability for teacher to provide written feedback to informal evals
  • Provide formal evaluations that accurately reflect these specific positions’ professional practices.
  • Access documents and make responses accessible.

February 27th School Board Speech


Good evening.  As the proud president of the over 600 certificated teachers of this district, through our site reps, our surveys, our organizing, and our site visits with our members, you have seen how passionate and vigorously I have brought forth with fidelity advocating for the many issues with which our members are asking for your help.  I am passionate about fighting workplace bullying, about fair and objective teacher evaluations, about protecting teachers’ time, about students’ learning conditions.  We collectively and vigorously demand quality not quantity, direct student services versus glossy booklets, and that we work to restore the joy in teaching for our NUSD teachers. We will continue to do so, independent of your attempts to malign the educators of Natomas.

It is suspect, that the District did not notice us, the Natomas Teachers Association of a closed session item concerning us at the last meeting.  Perhaps what the Board doesn’t know, is that the District office administration has been avoiding the Association in discussing discrepancies in the charges listed. Attempts to meet with District office administration has been met with silence and avoidance.  The subsequent behavior by administration is unacceptable for the educators, employees, students and community members of Natomas.

District office administration failed to notify NTA of those receiving non reelect notices this year, breaking from past practice so those teachers could be offered assistance.  

Hard working NTA leaders on site discovered some of those noticed with a non reelection letter. 

5 Special ed teachers,

2 seventh grade teachers

1 Math teacher

1 Science teacher and

2 English teachers

Retaining new educators to Natomas is of great importance to the Association, and we  trust the board has the same values. Ironically, from what we know, at least 6 of the 8 of what the District claims are “hard to fill” positions are being non reelected. When talking to these teachers it was discovered there were inconsistencies in evaluators, a bullying evaluator, and/or assistance lacking strategic application of supports. Until the district figures out how to retain and provide the necessary supports for new educators in Natomas, offering expensive incentives is not good for these educators nor the students they serve.

How do we best invest in our teachers? Through sincere support, adequate resources, and positive consistency.  Sadly, that is not the work environment that these teachers experienced during their short time here.

We have done better in the past, and we can do better now.

We encourage the Board to investigate why so many new hires decide to resign from year to year.

We encourage the Board to evaluate the District’s support program for new hires beyond the BTSA/Induction program.

Natomas Teachers’ Association advocates for students and classroom teachers

The Natomas Teachers Association represents preschool teachers, TK-12 grade teachers, nurses, psychologists, speech specialists, counselors, charter school teachers, and Special Education Specialists. NTA is dedicated to improving the conditions of teaching and learning in Natomas; to advance the cause of free, universal, and quality public education in Natomas; to ensure that the human dignity and civil rights of all children and youth are protected; and to secure a more just, equitable, and democratic society.

NTA recognizes that labor-management disputes occur, but is committed to resolving these disputes in a professional and appropriate manner, and preferably through the negotiations process or legal proceedings. In our current dispute with the District over the Union release time that the Parties long ago bargained and for which we contracted, NTA is pursuing its claims through administrative charges filed with the California Public Employment Relations Board. As the District has repeatedly shown, it prefers to engage in the hurling of public insults. This is unfortunate – but sadly not surprising to NTA and its members, who have had to put up with this infantile attitude for years now. NTA can only assure you that we remain focused on meeting the needs and expectations of our students and their families. We will continue to get this vital work done, and in the professional manner expected of educators. We invite the District to follow suit.

Setting the Record Straight, Part 2

The Natomas Teachers Association is dismayed but unfortunately hardly surprised by the District’s recent letter to the community regarding the Union. Rather than engage with NTA and the educational professionals NTA represents with respect and a sincere desire to do right by the District’s pupils, parents, and staff, the District prefers to traffic in falsehoods and smears, bluster and threats. The District’s most recent letter represents more of the same. Simply put, the District’s allegations about NTA representational activities and money owed to the District are false. The State of California Public Employment Relations Board had already issued a legal complaint against the District over its unlawful conduct towards NTA, and we look forward to addressing the District’s new misconduct before the PERB Board as well.