SEAC offers extended support services for California public school districts in the areas of labor relations and collective bargaining. These support services are provided at discounted rates for SEAC member districts.
SEAC Staff provides “At the Table” negotiations for management. All of our negotiators are former superintendents and all of them are experienced negotiators. In addition, to the actual negotiations our staff will provide information, training and preparations with your governing board, your negotiations team and after a negotiated agreement is approved by both your unions and your governing board, our staff can provide your total management team with in-service to understand the contract and how to implement it effectively.
Interest-Based Bargaining (IBB) Negotiations – Training and Facilitation
SEAC Can Meet Your Collaborative Negotiations Needs!
SEAC offers IBB/Collaborative Negotiations workshops tailored to meet your individual district needs. We work with you to determine the general content, participants, and the length of training sessions. Experienced Interest-Based/Collaborative negotiating experts plan and present the workshops on mutually specified dates and locations.
Workshop options may include:
- Full IBB training: These introductory workshops are generally 2 to 5 days of in-depth training for district and association negotiating team members. The district may decide to include the management team and association leadership in all or part of the session. Some districts include the Board of Education in part of the training.
- IBB overview sessions: A district often will identify a group needing better understanding of the IBB processes used by the negotiating teams. SEAC can offer these 2- to 3-hour sessions for the Board of Education, the full management team, or any other group specified by the district.
- Interest-Based Problem Solving training: The interest-based approach can be applied quite successful outside the negotiating table. SEAC can provide a training in the Interest-Based approach that can be applied to day-to-day problem solving at the district and school levels.
- Collaborative Practices sessions: Systems can be established to support and encourage collaborative practices at the district and school levels. SEAC can provide an overview of such practices, presented by district and school site leaders who have successfully implemented and benefited from such efforts.
- IBB refresher training: These workshops provide a review of IBB principles and practices for previously training negotiating team members, as well as an overview introduction to members newly joining teams. Typically, these workshops are ½-day, 1-day, or 2-day sessions.
Workshop costs vary according to the length, distance, and number of presenters needed.
Facilitator services are provided at an hourly fee. The length of the contract with SEAC is typically a year, but the term can be modified to meet district needs. Member districts receive a discount.
SEAC offers experienced neutral facilitators to assist joint association-district teams that have completed Interest-Based Bargaining (IBB) training, and seek an outside facilitator to help the team master and continue using the IBB process. Facilitators are selected to match personalities and approaches with each district’s joint team needs. Several districts utilize IBB facilitators, and indicate that this outside, neutral guidance greatly assists the team in maintaining a collaborative, positive approach to problem solving at the negotiating table. The districts can select their facilitator of choice. The facilitator plays a neutral role in negotiations, guides the teams in adhering to IBB practices, and provides feedback and encouragement through both smooth and challenging collective bargaining issues.
Health Benefit Advisory Services
Employer provided health benefits to school employees is one of the most expensive and complicated aspects of employer-employee relations. SEAC is the only professional statewide management association that employs a full-time health benefits consultant. Following are the key services provided by our consultant and his team of accomplished and experienced experts:
• Independent evaluation of the costs and quality of your current health benefits.
• Recommendations on how those benefit offerings might be improved
• Draft, issue and evaluate any necessary Requests for Proposals (RFP) or vendor service proposals.
• Negotiate any vendor contracts.
• Assist in the resulting implementation.
• Evaluate the Affordable Care Act (ACA), Covered California and all other legislative updates.
• Provide healthcare actuarial calculations and services.
• Advise management staff in “Best Practices” of benefits administration including compliance and reporting issues, benefit plan accounting, enrollment maintenance, and benefit vendor assessment, review and selection.
Staff Development and Training
SEAC provides staff development and training sessions for District Management Teams, Superintendent Cabinets, District Negotiating Teams, and the Superintendent/Board of Education Team. SEAC offers a wide range of topics with key connections to developing positive employee-employer relations, productive school and district climates, and skills in collective bargaining.
The following link connects to a list of training topics and descriptors; these can be modified to meet district needs in terms of focus and length of training. In addition, SEAC staff will be happy to confer with districts about additional topics for training opportunities. Costs for training sessions vary according to length, location, and number of presenters. Please note: SEAC member districts are entitled to one training session (up to 3 hours) per year at no additional cost. Training Topics
Workshops and Academies
SEAC annually offers an academy to provide comprehensive training for district management negotiators, superintendents, and school leaders who benefit from mastering the legal and practical aspects of labor relations and collective bargaining. Called the “School District Negotiators Certification Program,” this 60-hour academy prepares administrators for success in employer-employee relations and negotiations. It is a must for new, aspiring, and active management negotiating team members.
Each year, SEAC offers two programs to help administrators build a solid understanding of the laws, approaches, and skills needed for successful collective bargaining and labor relations. The program participants meet six times for Thursday night and Friday day session, typically from October/November and ending in March/April. Registration is open once a year, in summer and until the program begins in the fall. Individual administrator registrations are welcome, and districts are urged to consider sending their entire management negotiating team, at group discount rates. To view a brochure of this year’s programs, click HERE.
Interest-Based Bargaining Training Workshops
SEAC has a cadre of trained, experienced, and skillful trainers for the Interest-Based Bargaining (IBB) approach to negotiations. IBB workshops include both the district management negotiating team members and the association negotiating team members and leaders. Some districts seek IBB training for only one association (certificated or classified); some districts seek training with both associations (or all bargaining units) at once. Teams of trainers are selected to meet district needs, and can include management, teacher, and classified employee representatives, according to district interests and needs. Special sessions to introduce Board of Education officials to the IBB process are also available, with experienced Board member presenters included upon request.
IBB training sessions are interactive, and organized to meet district needs and schedules. Initial IBB training typically requires 3 to 5 days, with full district and association negotiating team participation. Review training, for district teams that have completed IBB training in the past, can be offered in 1-, 2-, or 3-hour sessions, or for a half or full day; topics would mirror district interests and needs.
Costs for the training vary according to the length of the training, location, and the number of trainers involved.
Research Projects and Studies
SEAC is pleased to offer this service. Often, if not always, the fair and competitive compensation of employees is the subject of collective bargaining. Compensation studies create a fair market analysis of your employees’ compensation or salary range by studying a variety of data. Initially, the comparative districts (your hiring competition) are determined in consultation with our staff. The job classifications to be studied are chosen by you. You may select a few positions, a single job family, or an entire bargaining unit, classified or certificated. SEAC is also able to do compensation studies for management as well as executive management positions. Like job descriptions (including duties, education, experience, and pay ranges in the competitive districts) are examined to determine fair and competitive compensation or salary range recommendations. Summary data and our recommendations are delivered to you in a detailed report, including the data behind the recommendation. Contact SEAC for a consultation and quote.
Our classification studies determine whether your employees are doing the job they are hired to do by using a highly collaborative, consultative approach. This involves job description analyses, a customized questionnaire for employees and supervisors to complete, and on-site interviews to determine recommendations and alignments. With this, an analysis of compensation is also included. We can provide these services for an entire bargaining unit or management group, a job family, or a single position. A detailed report is provided with specific recommendations and when necessary, new job descriptions are developed.
SEAC provides support for district personnel in their initial years of service at the executive management level. New superintendents and assistant superintendents benefit from regular interaction with a trusted SEAC coach. Our coaches are retired superintendents and assistant superintendents with a wealth of knowledge and a deep understanding of the job. Our consultants provide one-on-one coaching on a regular basis, work with management teams, and provide support in the area of governance team relations.
Our style is to coach by probing and asking you to reflect, leading to your own discovery of solutions, leadership styles, directions. We recognize and respect your strengths and potential. We don’t shy away from giving advice if you ask, but we focus on helping you create your own path of action. We know you’ve got the answers and respect your knowledge of the culture and context in which you operate.