CCUSD Human Resources

October 2020

Hello CCUSD Staff!

It's hard to believe that we're already seven weeks into this crazy school year! The past several months have been a journey--a time for learning, reflection, and growth. That is, if you even feel like you've had time! All of you have had to take on additional challenges this year as you learn to navigate new systems and structures for educating our students, from the littlest and squirmiest preschoolers to the grown ups in our adult education program who are sometimes equally distracted! Many of you have taken this new responsibility on while at home and having the additional workload of supporting your child(ren) through their own distance learning experiences because, no matter how excellent their teacher(s) and support staff may be, they are still at home and still need you in big ways! Thank you for sticking with it, for remaining as committed to educating the students of CCUSD as you have always been. Your hard work is visible and you are much appreciated for everything that you bring to the CCUSD family.

With respect and admiration,

Jennifer Slabbinck

Assistant Superintendent, Human Resources

Health and Wellness: COVID Announcements and Procedures

As you all know, the federal, state, and local governments and Departments of Public Health have provided a great deal of guidance for school districts about how to handle the effects of COVID. As we have had staff on campus throughout the pandemic, and as we begin to move toward having small groups of students on campus as allowed, it is critical that all staff are aware of procedures for being on/working on site. Here are the important things that we need you to know in order to keep yourself and others safe and healthy:

  • Report your absences - If you are unable to report to work, please ensure that you are reporting your absence through SmartFind Express (see below) as well as notifying your site. (Please note that calling in to your site/department does not officially record your absence for purposes of absence management/tracking.) Additionally, due to COVID considerations, please be aware that District nursing staff may reach out to you when you are out sick to check in on your health as well as to provide you with information regarding options for COVID care, testing, etc. if applicable. If you are experiencing any symptoms of COVID, please reach out to your primary care physician or check in with Dianna Castro to discuss your situation. Dianna and all of our site nursing staff are equipped to help you determine if you can and should be at work or at home.
  • Sign in daily - Not only are staff required to sign in daily for reporting and emergency procedure purposes, but at this time, it is even more critical. Prior to reporting to work/ signing in, please review the attached symptom self-check. By signing in at work, you are acknowledging that you completed a self-check and that you do not have any symptoms of COVID.
  • Get your thermometer! Free thermometers are available for all staff at your sites. Please stop by the nurse's office to get yours. (More information below)
  • Wear your mask! And practice social distancing of at least 6 feet. Both are mandatory in the work setting and will be enforced.
  • Ask questions - If you believe that you may have symptoms or if you have been exposed to a close contact who has tested positive for COVID, please reach out to Dianna Castro or Marybeth Paris. Dianna can assist you in determining if you need to stay at home and Marybeth will support you with any leave paperwork as necessary.
  • Know your rights - Federal and State governments have put policies into place to support you if you need to be off work for COVID related reasons. If you test positive, have symptoms and are seeking a test, have been exposed, or have a child whose school is closed, you may be eligible for leave. Please contact Marybeth Paris in Human Resources with any questions at
  • Look for an email from PowerSchool/TalentEd regarding new COVID related trainings. Both trainings can be done during your work hours and must be completed for compliance purposes. More information to come.
  • Finally, take care of yourself - physically and mentally. These are difficult times-to say the least-and everyone copes differently when faced with such stressors. If you need mental health support, do not hesitate to reach out to your primary health care provider for a referral and/or utilize the free resources provided by the Los Angeles County Office of Education through their EASE program for District employees. Program information can be accessed via the links below.

PowerSchool: New Systems and Procedures

As we have shared a few times, CCUSD has shifted to a new system for absence reporting, absence management, evaluations, professional development tracking, personnel requisitions, hiring/on-boarding, and a variety of other processes.

As employees, you have better and clearer access to your personnel information 24 hours a day/7 days a week. At this time, we have not transferred all paper copies of personnel files into the digital system. However, most paperwork associated with the 2020-2021 school year is available in your file and can be viewed by you as needed.

What can you find and do in your PowerSchool account? Some current examples include:

  • Personnel Requisitions - Have a PR in for an extra assignment? You can find it in your files and review it to see exactly where it is in the process!
  • Absence reporting - From your PowerSchool account, use the "waffle" to shift to the SmartFind Express system. Through this system, you can submit an absence and request a substitute (certificated staff only at this time - see below).
  • Absence reporting, part 2 - From the "Blank Docs" tab in PowerSchool, choose "Employee's Report of Absence" to digitally submit your absence paperwork. No more need for triplicate forms and paper waste!
  • Absence tracking - Although still being updated (for hourly employees), the SmartFind Express system allows you to review your absence balances in real time.

What do we need from you?

  • At this time, ALL ABSENCES should be reported using the SmartFind Express system (including those that do not require a substitute). This is required for all staff, including management, who have not typically been included in the digital system.
  • If you have not already done so, login to PowerSchool to complete all mandated paperwork (see below).
  • Begin using the system! As you explore, let us know in HR if you have any ideas for forms that can be included for digital submission to make your lives easier!
  • Please note that your SmartFind Express password will need to be reset every 180 days. You will receive notification from the system when this happens.

Mandated notifications and acknowledgements

As many of you know, mandated paperwork was made available through the PowerSchool system this year. Most of you have completed your paperwork at this time and/or have been made aware by your site support staff that you have missing items.

If you have not completed these forms, they are now overdue! Directions for completing all forms are attached again below. Please submit all necessary documents no later than October 30th.

If you are having difficulties with the PowerSchool system, please contact Cynthia Contreras at for support.

If you are do not know if you have an email address with CCUSD (all employees should) or if you cannot access your email account, please reach out to Frank Villalobos in IT at for assistance.

Substitute Procedures for Teaching Staff

Certificated K-12 Teaching Staff Only:

When we originally went into school closure back in March, who would have expected that we'd still be working in this way? At that time, we did not anticipate that we'd have a great deal of need for substitute coverage and, indeed, we didn't.

However, as we've moved deeper into the 2020-2021 school year with no specific return date at this time, it's become apparent that we need to have clarity around plans for if and when a staff member needs to miss work.

As a reminder, all teaching staff is expected to be working and available during their normal contractual hours. This includes attendance at professional development sessions and staff PLC meetings. Should you need to miss any work time, you must submit your absence through the SmartFind Express system, regardless of substitute coverage. (See section on PowerSchool as well as supporting emails from Cynthia Contreras.) . Additionally, please notify site/department administration of any absences.

As the state requirements for instruction in a Distance Learning environment require daily live interaction with teachers, we are now moving forward with implementation of a system through which we are utilizing trained substitute teaching staff to provide coverage for your absences. For elementary staff, this will require use of a sub for any 1/2 day morning absence (including single day absences), M, T, Th, and F. For secondary staff, please request a substitute if your absence will exceed three days (inclusive of a Wednesday).

Only substitutes that have attended District training on Distance Learning are eligible to substitute at this time. Please reach out to your site administrator or Cynthia Contreras to obtain names of approved substitutes.

Substitute Plans/Procedures/Requirements are available in the attachments below. Please note that the expectation is that all classroom teaching staff have emergency sub plans created and available to the site administration. If you have not already done so, please create and submit your plans ASAP so that they are available in the event that you need to utilize substitute coverage in a last minute/emergency situation.

Political Activity

We are well into the current election cycle, and some concerns have arisen as it relates to employees and political activity.

Please review the attached Board Policies and Administrative Regulations for clarity as to what can and cannot be done by employees during election season.

Please reach out directly to me if you have any questions or concerns regarding this topic.

Employee Appreciation

As many of you know, we typically celebrate Employee Appreciation in May of every school year. This is a time when we handout certificates and pins acknowledging milestone Years of Service, honor our retirees, celebrate our newly tenured teachers, and more. But in 2020, the school closure impacted our ability to come together, celebrate all of you, and most importantly, eat some delicious cake!

We were hopeful that events would go in a different direction and that we'd be able to celebrate you at our Back to School event in August. Of course, we weren't able to gather in person then or even now. We still can't get the cake to you, but we do want you to be able to get your other gifts and acknowledgements. Therefore, we will be delivering your gifts to your sites sometime during the week of 10/12. If you are at the site any time after next week, please pick up your Employee Appreciation gift. Certificates and pins will also be delivered as soon as possible and placed in your mailboxes.

Finally, what can we do here and now to continue to acknowledge and support the individual members of our staff family who deserve a little bit of extra recognition?

Please join us in our second annual "Thank an Educator" campaign where we celebrate the teachers, counselors, support staff, and administrators who contribute to making CCUSD the amazing place it is to work and send our own students. Nominate a colleague by completing the form linked below and watch during the month of November as we celebrate the heroes in our midst!

Calendar Committee

It is that time again! CCUSD administration, certificated staff, and classified staff come together every two years to collaborate on the school calendar for upcoming school years. This year's committee will consist of ten members: Assistant Superintendent for HR, ACE President (or designee), ACE member as selected by ACE, Classified staff member selected randomly from those interested (survey below), CCFT President (or designee), CCFT member as selected by CCFT, Certificated staff member selected randomly from those interested (survey below), MACCS President (or designee), MACCS member as selected by MACCS, MACCS staff member selected randomly from those interested (survey below).

As in the past, we will also survey staff and parents about their needs and interests and we will seek input as to the calendar options before we submit a final recommendation to the Board for approval.

If you are interested in volunteering to participate in this committee, please contact your union President and/or complete the interest survey below!