Tuesday, April 23, 2013

Thus Speaks LAUSD, Part I

Notice of 15-day "Ususpension" Without Pay, Which Forms the Basis of a Teacher's Dismissal from LAUSD. Approved by Dr. James Noble, Director of Operations, ESC South

“A Notice of Ususpension,” Dr. Noble?

"Yes, why? 

"Well, do you really think you should be firing someone because of a Notice of Ususpension?"

“Yes. Why? Wait. What the hell are you talking about? What are you bothering me for, anyway? I’m a busy man. I have many important things to do.”

“Really? Like what?”

“I’ve got this letter to send out. We’re having a teacher’s Administrative Review April 25.”

“You mean his Skelly Hearing?”

“Well, yes and no.”

“What do you mean, ‘Yes or no?'”

“Well, we call it an Administrative Review, but if you insist we will call it a Skelly. It doesn’t really matter.”

“It doesn’t? Why not? And isn't it supposed to be a Skelly Hearing?


"Why not?"

“Well for one thing we don’t do Skelly Hearings and for another….”

“Wait, wait, wait, wait, wait. What do you mean, You don’t do Skelly Hearings? Why not? No, wait. Forget that. What did you mean by, and for another thing?”

“Well for another thing, when you get to the OAH, LAUSD’s lawyers won’t even let you use the WORD hearing.”

“They won’t?”


“Well why the hell not?”

“Well THAT’s a stupid question! Because we don’t do Skelly Hearings.”

“Really? Well then what do you do?”

“We fire people. Asministrative Review. Skelly. Whatever. I’m going to listen to this guy who was long-ago fired yap and yawn April 25 and then tell him he’s fired.”

"You are going to tell a guy who's already been fired that he is going to be fired?"


"How does that work?"

"Oh, we fire everyone the day we remove them from their school. But we have to obey the protocols."

"You mean Due Process?" 

"Of course I don't mean Due Process! We don't do Due Process. We do protocols. We must follow all the protocols, except for..."

"Except for what?"

"Except for the protocols we don't follow."

"And by protocols, you mean going through the motions of Due Process, of conducting charades?"

"Of course not! What kind of dog-and-pony show do you think we're running here? But basically yes."

“And when are you telling him this, his next protocol?"

“What? When am I firing him, when am I going to tell him I'm pretending I just decided I'm going to fire him and am now telling him, or when am I telling him of the meeting?”

“When are you telling him about this next meeting? Wait a minute. What the...? You lost me. What when what…”

“Oh stop bothering me. The bottom line is we’re firing him. What’s the difference?”

“Well it does kind of make a difference, at least to the teacher. Which does this letter do?”

“It tells him when we are going to ignore him. I told you. His Administrative Review. His Skelly Hearing that is not a hearing.”

“And when is that?”

“April 25, 2013.”

“And you are writing this on what date?”

"April 17. I want him to have plenty of notice regarding when we will ignore him.”

“What if he can’t make the non-hearing hearing on April 25?”

“Oh, well, that’s easy. I will condescend to allow him to respond in writing.”

“Even if he can’t make the meeting?”


“What if his UTLA Representative can’t make the meeting?”

“The teacher can respond in writing. But he must respond in writing prior to the meeting.”

“You mean if he or his UTLA Representative can't make the meeting, he has to notify you in writing prior to the meeting? When does he have to notify you by, as you say, prior to the meeting?”

"He doesn't have to notify me prior to the meeting."

"He doesn't?"


“Wait a minute. But didn't you just say...? I don't get it. If he or his representative can't make the meeting he notifies you 24 hours prior?”


“Well when does he have to notify you by?”

“No. You get the wrong idea. He doesn’t have to notify me if he is not able to attend the meeting. The meeting is the meeting. He just has to respond to the meeting, if he wishes, in writing. I told you. He has to respond in writing.”

“Even if he wasn’t at the meeting.”


“Well, when does he need to turn in his written response to the April 25, 2013 meeting he cannot attend?”

“Six months ago, October 29, 2012.”

“You mean to tell me you are writing a letter on April 17, 2013 regarding a meeting to be held on April 25, 2013 and if he can’t make the meeting he must submit his response six months prior to the meeting?”

“Yes. Why? Is there a problem?”

Letter written by "Dr." James Noble, Ed.D., ESC South's Director of Operations

Detail: Noble's 4/17/13 letter announcing 4/25/13 Skelly Meeting requiring teacher's written response six months prior to the 2013 meeting, "no later than" 10/29/12

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