SJTA Endorsed School Board Candidates

November 4, 2022

SJTA proudly endorses the following school board candidates because of their belief that student success is found when parents and teachers work together.

Zima Creason
Area 3: Arden/Carmichael

Mike McKibbin
Area 3: Orangevale and part of Citrus Heights

Ray Ward
Area 6: Fair Oaks, Parts of OV and Gold River

Murad “Moe” Sarama
Area 7: Citrus Heights

Please click here to learn more about each individual candidate

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Bargaining Update

August 6, 2022

As many of you may recall from the 2021/22 contract negotiations (which included the rewrite of the salary schedule), our two year agreement was based on the state budget projections that were known at that time. In order to reach that agreement, it included a provision that the TK-12 salary schedule would be closed for the 2022-23 school year.

As the 2022-23 budget process unfolded this spring, it became clear that revenues were going to be much larger than what was known at the signing of our agreement in May of 2021. Upon seeing the Governor’s January Budget Proposal, the Association’s bargaining team signaled to the district that we needed to find a way to address this unexpected increase in the upcoming negotiations. Since then, our team has highlighted the impact of inflation on our members, continued to press the issue of unexpected revenues, and suggested creative ways in which these revenues could be incorporated into this round of negotiations.

On Wednesday, August 3rd, the SJTA and SJUSD’s bargaining teams met to examine the specific impact of the state’s adopted budget.

In that meeting, the District’s team officially notified SJTA of their intention to reopen the TK-12 salary schedule, pending board approval. During this time of extreme staffing shortages, and increased demands on practitioners, we appreciate the District’s and School Board’s desire to attract and retain high quality practitioners.

Stipends, ECE Salary, and Adult Ed Salary remain a part of negotiations. The District has also asked us to consider exploring a two-year agreement that possibly includes re-openers and contingency language (protection for both parties).

Both teams have articulated their desire to reach a fair and reasonable settlement, as quickly as possible. While communication between the parties is constant, the next official bargaining date will be Tuesday, August 23rd.

We will provide an update by the end of that week.

Governor Signs Budget, Setting Up Unique Negotiations in August

July 15, 2022

On June 30, the Governor signed the state budget into law. While we are still awaiting the trailer bill language that will help define the full implications for us at the local level, here are some of the highlights from the state level:

  • Ongoing Money = 12.84% increase in funding to education
    • Includes 6.56% COLA
    • Also includes additional $4.32 billion to LCFF base
  • One-time Money = $11.5 Billion
    • $7.9 billion for the Learning Recovery Emergency Block Grant
      • These funds appear fairly restricted in how they can be used
    • $3.5 billion will be provided for discretional uses
      • Restrictions are present, but appears to be more suggestion than direction

When we return to the table during the first week of August, we do so with an understanding of the challenges our members face given the current rates of inflation.

Please be on the lookout for an update on negotiations prior to the first day of service on August 9th. These will likely be shared via your site reps.

Agreement Reached on Health and Safety

August 20, 2021

SJTA and the District have agreed to review the agreement monthly –to address changing  health conditions AND to monitor impacts on workload

SJTA and SJUSD have reached an agreement with the district on the Health and Safety Side Letter of Agreement (SLA). That document has been sent to your site Rep for distribution to all members.

Our work was grounded in two main priorities that we shared with you on August 6th:

  • Keeping students, staff and our community as safe as possible during this time
  • Providing students and families an opportunity to receive education in the format that serves students best (which includes keeping schools physically open for in-person learning)

Once you have reviewed the SLA document, please share your questions with your Faculty Reps so that they can voice them during the Rep Council Information Meeting on August 25th.

Additional Notes: COVID Testing: Based on your requests, the district has  expanded the hours and locations for Covid testing. The schedule can be found here. We understand that the expanded time is limited to one day at one site. While it is progress, we have notified the district that additional times outside of work hour and additional testing sites need to be added.

COVID-19 Supplemental Paid Sick Leave: State coverage that began in March continues through September 30, 2021. We are currently working with the district on language to extend this, should there not be a State or Federal replacement. Please contact [email protected] for a copy of the current leave offered by the state.

SJUSD COVID Resources/Information: During collaboration time on Thursday, August 26th sites will be reviewing the Covid-19 resources found on the district’s website with a focus on the question/issues that have been raised at your site.

State Public Health Officer Order of August 11, 2021: The district has informed us that they are creating plans related to vaccine verification for all employees and diagnostic testing for unvaccinated or partially vaccinated workers.  The Association has not yet entered into conversations with the district regarding these plans. We will keep you informed as those discussions occur.

Demand to Bargain Notice

November 9, 2020


Our SJTA Executive Board has worked hard to establish a collaborative relationship with the district. That relationship typically allows both parties to find creative ways to address difficult problems. Unfortunately, at this time we are unable to reach an agreement with the district about how to proceed in providing in-person and remote learning in a hybrid model. Further, during this pandemic the CA legislature has issued several new laws that have increased the district’s ability to unilaterally choose a model. The combination of these two realities and the time constraints involved, have resulted in the district deciding to ‘impose’ the model for how schooling will look beginning in January. We do not yet have details about the model, but it appears as though it could be a combination of models. As soon as we have more information, we will let you know.

The moment the district communicated they were going to impose a model, we let them know that we would issue a ‘Demand to Bargain.’ A demand to bargain is the legal assertion of our right to negotiate the impacts of any decision that the district makes that affects our members.

To that end, the following are several key areas we plan to include in our demand to bargain (this is not an exhaustive list):

  • Transition and planning time to move to the new model
  • Working conditions, including, but not limited to:
    • Any aspect of the model that impacts our members
    • Ensuring adequate preparation time during the week
    • Protecting contractual hours and workload expectations
    • Securing full distance learning or remote work for members who are medically compromised or who are primary care providers for someone who is medically compromised
    • Identifying ways to address the childcare needs of members
  • Health and Safety
    • Requiring face coverings for all students 2 years and older (exemption for medical reasons only)
    • Establishing clear guidelines for students that do not comply with established safety guidelines
    • Establishing clear cleaning protocols and cycles at each site, including establishing a reporting process for staff concerns in the event protocols are not followed
    • Increasing the health screening process beyond Sacramento County’s passive screening recommendation
    • Identifying ways for itinerant/support staff to provide services to students while limiting their exposure
    • Increase the number of plexiglass dividers (or other method of ensuring increased protections) being provided to sites/programs to accommodate small group and one on one instruction/services

While we are disappointed the district has chosen this action, we recognize that the legislature gives them the right to do so. Given that time is of the essence, we will now assert our right to negotiate the impact of this decision through our demand to bargain.

Our highest priorities at this time are to ensure that our members have clear information about what schooling will look like in January; and to ensure it is done as safely as possible. Our goal is to have a Side Letter of Agreement in place and distributed to our membership prior to the Thanksgiving break.

In Unity, Bill Simmons

San Juan Teachers Association School Board Endorsement

August 4, 2020

We are proud to announce that the SJTA Political Action Committee for Education (PACE) unanimously recommended, and our Executive Board unanimously endorsed the reelection of the three incumbent school board trustees:

Pam Costa
Saul Hernandez
Paula Villescaz

All three have been reasonable, effective, and collaborative school board trustees. They have each proven to be steadfast supporters of public education and of our students. Each has demonstrated the willingness to listen to and seek out divergent perspectives to fully inform decisions for SJUSD. During these uncertain times, we are confident that their capable and steady leadership will guide our district with competence, transparency, stability, and strength going forward.

If you have questions about our endorsement, please reach out to President, Bill Simmons or Vice President, Robert Waldo.

Our Statement Regarding Social Justice

June 26, 2020

We the members of the San Juan Teachers Association’s Executive Board affirm that Black Lives Matter. That our students of color matter. That we view their education as an inviolable trust bestowed to us by loving families. We will not fail to meet the moment with humility, dedication, and understanding of how long the journey has been, and how far there is to go.

Equity, as expressed by the idea that all children and families are valued, and deserving of respect and opportunity, has always been one of the guiding pillars of the San Juan Teachers Association. Equity is not dependent on sameness; it is the essential element in the fabric of our community’s rich diversity. As educational practitioners who advocate for equity and social justice, we uphold the ideals of our country’s founding documents, and both the letter and spirit of our Constitution.

The tragic deaths of people of color, brought to the forefront by the recent killings of George Floyd, Breonna Taylor, Ahmaud Arbery, Rayshard Brooks, and so many others, has galvanized a long overdue awareness in the United States. We see clearly institutional racism laid bare all across our society.

Although clearly defined over 150 years ago in our 14th and 15th Constitutional amendments, the rights of equality under the law for all citizens have not been, with fidelity, enforced or protected by governments from the local to federal levels. A great chasm has separated the ideals of this country from its realities.

As educators and parents, we know that “children learn what they live.” We also know that we live in a divided society. It is our duty to provide an environment in which children learn about themselves, others, and the world untethered to systemic inequity. We will work to dismantle the institutionalized white supremacy that has kept the written promises of the United States of America so unfulfilled for so many of our families. We will work to build a culture where the USA’s promises to its people are fulfilled.

We are immensely proud of our colleagues who have long embraced this work, and we shall be fearless as we meet the challenges ahead. We are dedicated to supporting each of our colleagues and students in ensuring equity, inclusion, and access for all. By clearly examining our history, by asking and answering the toughest questions, by thoughtfully reflecting on the paths taken and envisaging the paths forward, and by empathetically responding to our students’ needs, we, as educators, will work to transform our country. America’s future depends on it.

Rep Council Highlights:

February 14, 2020


2% Bonus:
The negotiated 2% bonus check should be paid by Friday, February 14. If you have any questions please feel free to call us here at SJTA: 916-487-SJTA (7582)

PARS/Early Retirement Incentive:
The District is exploring the viability of an early retirement incentive. Offers have been sent to all eligible employees and four informational meetings have been held. If you feel that you are eligible, but have not received a packet, please call HR at 916-971-7171 to inquire.

We are continuing to look at the comparability study completed last year to drive the conversations around bargaining. Please see the September 3, 2019 letter from SJTA President Bill Simmons (below) for complete details on the bargaining team’s current focus around addressing the salary schedule.

Schools and Communities First (SCF):
There is still time to sign and turn in petitions. Your site rep should have the petitions or you can stop by SJTA offices after school. We have a hard deadline of February 26 to turn in all petitions. Please keep in mind that if SCF passes this fall, it would mean an overall increase to San Juan of $24 million per year beginning with 22-23 School Year

For a complete review of all the information shared at Rep Council, please do the following:

  • Attend the 5-minute Meeting during your monthly staff meeting
  • Read the minutes that are forwarded by your site rep
  • Reach out to your faculty representatives