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Clovis Teachers Union Group Files New Labor Complaint Against School District



Clovis Unified teachers and other educators are seeking to form a union in the school district. (GV Wire/Jahz Tello)
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The Association of Clovis Educators, which is seeking to form a labor union for Clovis Unified teachers and other educators, has filed a second labor complaint against the district with the state Public Employment Relations Board.

ACE is asking PERB to stop the district from controlling and funding the district’s Faculty Senate, which Clovis Unified recognizes as its educators’ labor representative.

The group also claims in its latest complaint that Clovis Unified is interfering with the association’s organizing efforts through an ongoing misinformation and surveillance campaign that includes monitoring emails.

Clovis Unified spokeswoman Kelly Avants said Wednesday the district is aware of the latest complaint “and will respond appropriately through PERB.”

Complaint Says District Controls Faculty Senate

The Faculty Senate is “beholden” to the district and not an independent representative of teachers, said ACE spokeswoman Kristin Heimerdinger, a Buchanan High teacher.

“The district’s Faculty Senate claims to represent teachers but in fact is illegally supported, beholden, and manipulated by the district for its purposes,” she said in a news release Wednesday.

The complaint by ACE alleges that the district controls and supports the Faculty Senate by paying the Faculty Senate president’s wages and benefits while the president is released from teaching, and provides a car and office space for the president. The district also provides the Faculty Senate with a budget, credit card and stipend, counsel, accounting services, and legal advice, ACE alleges.

The complaint, filed late Tuesday, comes two months after ACE filed unfair labor practices charges with PERB, alleging that the district’s support and control of the Faculty Senate violates state labor law.

ACE is continuing its efforts to sign up teachers to a union-authorizing petition. In June, the district’s school psychologists filed with PERB their intent to be represented by ACE.

Nancy Price is a multimedia journalist for GV Wire. A longtime reporter and editor who has worked for newspapers in California, Florida, Alaska, Illinois and Kansas, Nancy joined GV Wire in July 2019. She previously worked as an assistant metro editor for 13 years at The Fresno Bee. Nancy earned her bachelor's and master's degrees in journalism at Northwestern University's Medill School of Journalism. Her hobbies include singing with the Fresno Master Chorale and volunteering with Fresno Filmworks. You can reach Nancy at 559-492-4087 or Send an Email