Classified Employee Layoffs FAQs
Q: What is a layoff and why is it happening now?
A: A layoff is the involuntary separation of employment of an employee due to a district decision that there is a lack of work or lack of funds in accordance with California Education Code 45117/88017.
Q: How much notice of layoff will I get?
A: Education Code 45117/88017 requires at least a 60 calendar day written notice in most circumstances.
Q: What happens if my position is reduced in hours or abolished? How will I know?
A: Official notification will come from the District in the form of a letter after the Board of Education takes action. This notice is required to include the opportunity to exercise your bumping rights if any, and any reemployment rights you may have. We have seen some districts giving notice that does not contain adequate information about bumping and reemployment rights; if that happens to you, you should contact your local CSEA Labor Relations Representative or Chapter Leadership to get more information.
Q: What rights do I have during the layoff and reduction process?
A: The rights and procedures governing layoffs and reductions are outlined in the California Education Code, California Government Code, and the Collective Bargaining Agreement between CSEA and the District.
Q: Can the District lay me off and then contract out my job?
A: Districts cannot lay off employees and then contract out the work they perform. See California Education Code 45103.1/88003.1.
Q: Can the District lay me off and then use volunteers to do my job?
A: Districts cannot lay off employees and then allow volunteers to do the work they performed. See California Education Code 35021.
Q: What happens if I get bumped by someone?
A: You are extended the same rights as everyone else- 60 calendar day written notice, the opportunity to exercise your bumping rights if any, and any reemployment rights you may have.
Q: Can I bump into a classification that I've never held a position in? What about Tucker Rights?
A: No. You cannot bump into a classification in which you have never previously held permanent or probationary status, however, Education Code section 45298/88117 provides that employees have reemployment rights to vacant positions. This means that a laid off employee has the right to be placed in any vacant position for which he or she meets the minimum qualifications and applies. The employee need not have served in the vacant position in order to take it as a reemployed person. These are called “Tucker reemployment rights”, and they mean that the laid off employee has superior rights to a position over outside applicants. Bumping rights between district employees do not change; they are not affected by Tucker.
Q: How is my seniority determined?
A: State law mandates the process used by districts and county offices of education to determine seniority for classified staff in accordance with California Education Code Section 45308/88127. Whenever a classified employee is laid off, the order of layoff “within the class” shall be determined by length of service. The employee who has been employed the shortest time in the class, plus higher classes, shall be laid off first. Seniority can be by hire date or hours worked. Check your local contract to see which your district follows. For further information please contact your local CSEA Labor Relations Representative or Chapter Leadership.
Q: What happens if my seniority is a tie with another employee?
A: Check your CSEA contract to see what your district must do in this situation.
Q: Can I have access to the seniority list?
A: The seniority list should not be private. If you need access to this document request it from the Human Resources Department of your District.
Q: What should I do if I see incorrect data on the seniority list?
A: Immediately notify the Human Resources Department of your District and CSEA.
Q: Can I choose to displace (“bump”) any less senior employee in my classification?
A: Check your CSEA contract to see what your district must do in this situation. Bumping rights are not in the Education Code but rather are a matter of negotiation between CSEA and the employer.
Q: If I worked as a substitute or short-term/limited-term employee in a classification, does this time count towards my seniority?
A: No, this time does not count. Only time served as a regular employee counts towards seniority in a classification.
Q: How long would my name remain on the reemployment list?
A: Persons laid off because of lack of work or lack of funds are eligible for reemployment for a period of 39 months and shall be reemployed in preference to new applicants. Employees who take voluntary demotions or reductions in assigned time in lieu of layoff or to remain in their present positions rather than be reassigned, shall be granted the same rights as persons laid off and shall retain eligibility to be considered for reemployment for an additional period of 24 months. Check your local contract to see exactly how your district handles this. For further information please contact your local CSEA Labor Relations Representative or Chapter Leadership.
Q: If I am on a reemployment list and turn down an offer of employment, what happens to me?
A: Check your CSEA contract to see what limits may exist in this situation, but generally positions will be offered to those on the reemployment lists by seniority for a period you’re on the rehire list from the date of layoff. When offered a reemployment opportunity, an individual may turn down that opportunity and remain on the reemployment list for remaining period unless something else has been negotiated.
Q: What happens to my seniority once I am recalled from the reemployment list?
A: For further information please contact your local CSEA Labor Relations Representative or Chapter Leadership.
Q: If I have questions about unemployment insurance, who do I contact?
A: For information about unemployment, you can contact the California State Employment Development Department at 800-480-3287 or visit their website at www.edd.ca.gov
Q: If I am laid off, what happens to my health benefits? Am I eligible for COBRA?
A: Check your CSEA contract to see what your district has to do in this situation. At least you will be given the opportunity to continue your benefits through COBRA, which gives you the opportunity to continue benefits for you and your eligible dependents.
Q: If I am laid off from the District, what happens to my accrued vacation and sick time?
A: All unused vacation time should be paid out. Unused sick time will remain on the books and if you are hired back from a reemployment list the sick time will be reinstated as if you never left. If you are hired by another public agency unused sick time may be transferable within one year in accordance with California Education Code 45202/88202.
Q: What happens to my retirement funds if I am laid off from the District?
A: You can contact CalPERS for available options at 800-225-7377 or visit their website at www.calpers.ca.gov