California Educator

May / June 2016

Issue link:

Contents of this Issue


Page 35 of 59

R E D D I N G : AC A D E M Y O F P E R S O N A L I Z E D L E A R N I N G LO S E S I N F E D E R A L CO U R T A federal bankruptcy judge slammed the Academy of Personalized Learning (APL) for "inappropriate games- manship" in a decision that stopped APL from using bankruptcy proceedings to get out of an unfair labor practice hearing before the Public Employment Relations Board (PERB). At a formal PERB hearing last October, APL was to answer charges that it illegally fired nine teachers (see photo) in December 2014 because they formed a union. (The Educator reported about the firings in " 'Dream School' Becomes the Nightmare Before Christmas," April 2015.) The charter school hired noncredentialed staff to replace them. The teachers' union, the Academy of Personalized Learning Education Association (APLEA), offered a cost-saving settlement that APL rejected. APL filed for bankruptcy a week before the PERB hearing, insisting the hearing could not be held until the bank- ruptcy judge ruled. In the May ruling, the judge refused to "countenance" APL's conduct, and sent the case back to PERB for fur- ther hearings. Candy Woodson, one of the fired APLEA members, i s lo oking for ward to th e PERB h earing "so we can vindicat e our rights. APL E xecutive D irector Patri- cia Dougherty wrongly fired nine teachers and then blamed us for putting them into bankruptcy because we wanted to defend ourselves." Teachers at APL unionized in 2014 so they could advo- cate for their students without reprisal and improve teaching conditions. After a year of bullying tactics by Dougherty and APL, frustrating contract talks, and unfair labor practice charges filed by APLEA contending bad Bargaining Roundup Details of these stories at The Redding educators who were fired from APL in 2014, and where they are now: From left, Rosanne Blevins, Montessori teacher at Shasta Union Elementary School District; Cindy Silva, K-3 teacher at Igo-Ono Elementary School; Candy Woodson, retired; Robin Thorne, school counselor in Red Bluff; Peggy Youmans, independent study program teacher in Enterprise Elementary School District; Christy Gadbois-Vail, teacher in Enterprise Elementary School District; Wendy McBroome, still an educator at APL, president of APLEA; Mark Youmans, alternative education teacher in Anderson Union High School District. Not pictured: Shana Seitz, who has continued to work in Native American education. Photo by Timothy M. McBroome. 34

Articles in this issue

Links on this page

Archives of this issue

view archives of California Educator - May / June 2016