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Distance learning talks stalled as Sacramento City Unified set to start classes

The Sacramento City Teacher’s Association has called an impasse and is asking for a state mediator to help resolve distance learning negotiations.

SACRAMENTO COUNTY, Calif. — Officials with the Sacramento City Unified School District and the union representing its teachers may be getting some help to reach an agreement over distance learning as the two sides have yet to reach an agreement, just days before the new school year begins.

Students in SCUSD start school online on September 3 due to the coronavirus pandemic.

The district and union made some progress during hours of negotiations over the weekend, including agreements on professional development for teachers and a phase-in to the start of school.

The Sacramento City Teacher’s Association, the union representing Sacramento teachers, called an impasse after disagreements on key issues including curriculum, testing, and special education.

“The district has proposed and continues to propose required minimum live screen time for students that far exceeds what we think almost any district is requiring,” said David Fisher, President of the SCTA.

The two groups have compromised on the state minimum for instructional time, but remain at odds over live screen time with a teacher.

“SCTA’s proposal fails to provide adequate time for students to learn from their teachers,” said SCUSD Superintendent Jorge Aguilar.

SCTA has called for a state mediator to help move the negotiations along, but for now, the school year will start with a temporary schedule on September 3.

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