On October 9, 2021, Governor Newsom acted on the final legislative proposals on his desk, marking the end of the 2021 legislative session. This report sets forth the key education proposals that have been signed or vetoed.

The legislature has adjourned until January 3, 2022.

Human Resources

AB 438 (Reyes): School employees: classified employees: layoff notice and hearing. This law will require a school or community college district to provide written layoff notice(s) to the governing board and affected classified employee(s) no later than March 15. The law will authorize a classified employee to request a hearing to determine if there is cause for not re-employing for the ensuing year.

The law will express the intent of the Legislature in enacting the bill to provide classified school employees with the same rights to notice and hearing with respect to layoffs as is provided to certificated employees of school districts, including teachers and administrators, and academic employees of community college districts. If, after January 1, 2021, the Legislature provides certificated or academic employees with any additional rights to notice or hearing as to layoffs, the bill would require the respective classified employees to be afforded the same rights by their local education agency (LEA).

CASBO, alongside education management organizations, continues to oppose AB 438 because it limits LEAs’ ability and fiduciary responsibility to make informed budgetary decisions that focus on ensuring the best services and support systems are available to meet the needs of students. We argued in opposition the following main concerns:

  • AB 438 would eliminate any remaining flexibility LEAs have to make accurate personnel decisions and preserve jobs once they have a clearer picture of state funding and enrollment for the coming school year.
  • AB 438 would force LEAs to determine which support staff to retain three months before the state budget passed.
  • AB 438 would exacerbate the disruption and uncertainty that the March 15 deadline already creates during difficult budget years.

CASBO will offer workshops in December 2021 to assist LEAs in managing the hiring and layoff notice process, and we will continue to work on your behalf to inform state officials of the programmatic impacts this law will have on LEAs’ ability to best serve students’ needs while balancing fiscal constraints. Watch your inbox and our newsletter for specific workshop registration information as it becomes available.

CASBO Position: Oppose.

AB 898 (Lee): Criminal records: automatic conviction record relief. This law requires the California Department of Justice, in cases where probation has been transferred, to electronically submit notice of conviction record relief to both the transferring court and any subsequent receiving court. This law also amends Penal Code Section 1203.425, which excludes a court from disclosing information concerning a conviction granted relief to any person or entity, in any format, except to the person whose conviction was granted relief or a criminal justice agency.

Penal Code Section 1203.425 in its current form prohibits a superior court from disseminating records to the California Commission on Teacher Credentialing (CTC) and LEAs where a conviction has been dismissed. Without the ability to access conviction information, LEAs and the CTC cannot fulfill their legal duty to evaluate whether volunteers and prospective or current educators with convictions are fit to serve among students in public schools.

CASBO Position: Oppose unless amended

SB 270 (Durazo): Public employment: labor relations: employee information. This law, commencing July 1, 2022, will authorize an exclusive representative to file a charge of an unfair labor practice with the California Public Employment Relations Board, as specified, alleging a violation of the above-described requirements, only if specified conditions are met, including that the exclusive representative gives written notice of the alleged violation and that the public employer fails to cure the violation. The law will limit a public employer’s opportunity to cure certain violations.

CASBO Position: Oppose

SB 278 (Leyva): California Public Employees’ Retirement System (CalPERS): disallowed compensation: benefit adjustments. This law will require that:

  • If CalPERS determines that the compensation reported for a CalPERS member by a public employer is in conflict with existing law or regulations, CalPERS must prohibit the public employer from continuing to report the disallowed compensation. This requirement also applies to determinations made on or after January 1, 2017, if the appeal rights of the CalPERS member have not been exhausted.
  • In the case of an active CalPERS member, all contributions on disallowed compensation must be credited against future contributions to the benefit of the public employer by CalPERS, and the public employer must return the member’s contributions that were paid on the disallowed compensation.
  • In the case of a retired CalPERS member or survivor or beneficiary whose final compensation at the time of retirement was based on disallowed compensation, the contributions made on the disallowed compensation must be credited against future contributions to the benefit of the public employer.

CASBO Position: Oppose

SB 488 (Rubio): Teacher credentialing: reading instruction. This law will authorize candidates who have been unable to take the Reading Instruction Competence Assessment® (RICA®) due to the COVID-19 pandemic to take a CTC-approved assessment in reading instruction, and requires the CTC to update the Teaching Performance Assessment to replace the RICA by July 1, 2025. This law also requires the CTC to revise their teacher preparation program standards and teaching performance expectations for literacy.

CASBO Position: Support


AB 167 (Committee on Budget): Education finance: education omnibus budget trailer bill. This is the education budget cleanup bill that makes various modifications, with major highlights as follows:

  • Amends the California Pre-Kindergarten Planning and Implementation Grant Program base grant amounts for LEAs.
  • Modifies the independent study program (ISP) apportionment for students who are participating in the program due to a COVID-19 quarantine; allows LEAs to obtain signed written agreements up to 30 days after a student begins an ISP; clarifies that synchronous instruction may be provided by the teacher of record or the certificated teacher providing instruction for course-based independent study; and clarifies the tiered re-engagement and attendance requirements.
  • Updates the timeframe for a grant recipient to develop an expenditure plan for the A-G Learning Loss Mitigation Grant to April 1, 2022.
  • Extends the amount of time a substitute teacher can provide instruction in a class from 30 to 60 days.

To read further details on this bill, check out our CASBO Newsbreak, “Legislature Proposes Changes to the Independent Study Program.”


SB 4 (Gonzalez): Communications: California Advanced Services Fund (CASF): California Public Utilities Commission (CPUC) Deaf & Disabled Telecommunications Program: surcharges. This law will extend the CASF from December 31, 2026, to December 31, 2032, increase the annual surcharge collection limit from $66 million to $150 million per year, and revise the surcharge collection methodology by the CPUC. This law will enable the state to continue funding broadband infrastructure and adoption projects after federal funding expires.

CASBO Position: Support

SB 28 (Caballero): Digital Infrastructure and Video Competition Act of 2006: deployment data. This law will expand the authority of the CPUC to collect data to enforce requirements for cable franchises and authorizes the CPUC to set customer service requirements for cable providers.

CASBO Position: Support


AB 101 (Medina): Pupil instruction: high school graduation requirements: ethnic studies. This law requires that commencing with the graduating class of 2029-30, students will need to complete one semester course in ethnic studies in order to receive a high school diploma. Commencing in 2025-26, it requires LEAs and charter schools serving students in grades 9 through 12 to offer at least a one-semester course in ethnic studies.

CASBO Position: Monitor


SB 556 (Dodd): Street light poles, traffic signal poles: small wireless facilities attachments. This bill would require street light poles and traffic signal poles owned by a local government or local publicly owned electric utility to be made available for the placement of small wireless facilities, outlines the rates and fees that may be imposed for such use of these poles, and establishes the processes for reviewing and responding to requests for placing these facilities on these poles.

CASBO Position: Support

To review additional education legislation and final actions, visit CASBO’s 2021-22 Legislation by Subject website.