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Separating Fact from Fiction at UCLA Lab School


Dear Lab School Families,


Principal Lazo and the UC Management bargaining team sent an email to the entire lab school community on Thursday, December 8 at 8:17 p.m., describing their version of the bargaining process. Demonstration Teachers' perspective is not represented in this communication. In fact, management's email contains many misrepresentations. Please read the Demonstration Teacher perspective below.


Fiction: Principal Lazo has stated several times, including in a community email on January 11 and during the December 11th Coffee with the Principal (and her message was reiterated by the Chair and Vice Chair of the Board of Advisors) that there is a no strikes clause in the Demonstration Teacher contract which prohibits us from striking.


Fact: There is a no strike clause in the Unit 18 contract. That clause does not apply to “reopener” bargaining that is specifically authorized by the Unit 18 contract, which is the case with Lab School negotiations. Demonstration Teachers retain our legal right to strike based on unfair labor practices.


Fiction: Lab School Administration and UC Management have implied that they have been working to move negotiations forward while Demonstration Teachers and UC-AFT have obstructed the bargaining process.


Fact: Demonstration Teachers and UC-AFT formally proposed and requested bargaining dates five times over five months beginning in February 2022, and the University failed to respond with dates or even a timeline for beginning negotiations until July 2022.


Fiction: UC Management claims that since September 29, 2022 Demonstration Teachers and UC-AFT have yet to respond to UC Management’s proposal on compensation.


Fact: Demonstration Teachers and UC-AFT responded to UC Management clearly stating that we would not negotiate only on compensation or waive our right to negotiate a full range of subjects. Bargaining compensation without bargaining workload issues, such as class size and the calendar does not make sense and is unfair to teachers.


Fact: Lab School Administration and UC Management could have agreed at any time to put ALL mandatory subjects of bargaining on the table and begin negotiations in earnest. They have and continue to refuse to bargain over important teaching and learning conditions detailed in our other 19, fully-developed proposals – proposals that include teacher planning time, class size, calendar, and instructional supports.


Fiction: UC Management claims that by filing Unfair Labor Practices with the Public Employment Relations Board (PERB), Demonstration Teachers and UC-AFT have created conditions that impede progress in negotiations.


Fact: The Unfair Labor Practices were filed with PERB because Lab School Administration and UC Management were not bargaining in good faith. For example, they delayed the start of negotiations for 6 months, misrepresented plans to change our terms of employment, and took contradictory positions with the lab school community about their obligation to negotiate the school calendar.


Fiction: UC Management claims that their compensation proposal which offers a 4% salary increase retroactive to July 1, 2022, is “comprehensive.”


Fact: Demonstration Teachers have not had a cost of living adjustment during the last three years. UC Management’s proposal essentially offers teachers an increase of just over 1% a year during a time of record inflation.


Fact: UC Management’s proposed salary scale removes incentives for continuing education for 98% of Demonstration Teachers.


Fact: UC Management’s compensation proposal lacks an equity review process to ensure that teachers with similar experience and levels of education are paid equitably.


Fiction: UCLA Lab School and School of Education and Information Studies (SEIS) Administrators claim they cannot influence the direction of bargaining. They place full responsibility for bargaining on UCLA Labor Relations (UCLA staff lawyers who facilitate negotiations with unions at UCLA).


Fact: Past principals of UCLA Lab School, working in conjunction with Demonstration Teachers and the University, have always had the responsibility and power to move negotiations forward.

UCLA Lab School Administration and UC Management are misrepresenting the history of our bargaining process to our community. Our principal should be an advocate for Demonstration Teachers, not an adversary, in this process.


Fact: UC Labor Relations facilitated negotiations at Geffen Academy and Preuss School UCSD which resulted in contracts covering a full range of subjects. UCLA Lab School and SEIS administrators continue to point the finger at UC Labor Relations instead of doing the job of facilitating negotiations as other UC PreK -12 school administrations have done.


Fiction: UC Management claims there is an entity called the “union” that is separate from the Demonstration Teachers and that entity is not representing the will and interests of the teachers.


Fact: Our union is democratic and member run. Our Executive Committee and Bargaining Team are Demonstration Teachers elected by a majority of Demonstration Teachers. Throughout this bargaining process, we have maintained an approval process requiring a vote of approval of at least 70% of all Demonstration Teachers. If you were handed a flyer at school, over 70% of teachers voted to hand you that flyer. We are our union.


Please support Demonstration Teachers by signing our petition to SEIS Dean, Tina Christie and UCLA Executive Vice Provost, Darnell Hunt:




UC-AFT Executive Committee and Bargaining Team


Sylvia Gentile - Upper Demonstration Teacher

Judith Kantor - Demonstration Teacher and School Librarian

Kim Morchower - Intermediate Demonstration Teacher

Cristina Paul - Dual Language Primary Demonstration Teacher

Nancy Villalta - Dual Language Primary Demonstration Teacher

Chris Wilson - Intermediate Demonstration Teacher