Amendments to the CTC Reporting Regulation Take Effect July 1

Title 5 of the California Code of Regulations, section 80303, requires a report to the Commission on Teacher Credentialing within 30 days of certain employment actions. Amendments to section 80303 have been approved by the State Board of Education and take effect July 1, 2014. The amendments clarify some reporting requirements and the procedures by which the public may report a superintendent who fails to submit a required report to the CTC.

Whereas the current version of section 80303 requires the report to CTC to include “all known information about each alleged act of misconduct,” the amended regulation requires more specific information to accompany the report: the name and current address of the credential holder, the name of the reporting district, the title of the last assignment, an explanation of the allegation of misconduct or pending allegation of misconduct, the current contact information for all persons who may have information relating to the alleged misconduct and any and all documentation related to the case.

The “80303 Notification Form” available on the CTC’s website does not yet reflect these new requirements.

The amended regulation clarifies that a termination or non-reemployment decision based solely on unsatisfactory performance or a layoff or reduction in force does not require a CTC report.

The CTC has jurisdiction to investigate the failure to submit a required report based on an affidavit or declaration submitted to the Commission under penalty of perjury, sufficient to establish that required reporting is not being done or not being done in a timely manner. Official records released by the CTC under the Public Records Act are sufficient bases for personal knowledge for purposes of filing an affidavit or declaration.

If the Commission has information or belief that a required report has not been made, a letter will be sent to the responsible superintendent providing facts, detailing reporting responsibilities, and requesting a response. Failure of a superintendent to make a required report constitutes unprofessional conduct and will be investigated by the Committee of Credentials. This provision has not changed and reflects Education Code § 44030.5, added January 1, 2014, which provides that failure to make the required report will be deemed unprofessional conduct and may subject the superintendent of the school district or county office of education, or the administrator of a charter school, to adverse action by the CTC.

While amended section 80303 does not mention it, as of January 1, 2014, Education Code section 44035.5(d) makes it a misdemeanor to refuse or willfully neglect to make the CTC report. The misdemeanor offense is punishable by a fine ranging from $500 to $1,000. The fine is the “personal responsibility of the superintendent” and may not be paid or reimbursed with public funds.

As in the previous version of section 80303, the report to CTC must be made regardless of any agreement, settlement, or stipulation with the credential holder not to make the report. The report is required even if the allegations are withdrawn in consideration of the employee’s resignation, retirement, or other failure to contest the truth of the allegations. Any agreement not to make the report to CTC is void and unenforceable. (Picton v. Anderson Union High School District (1996) 50 Cal.App.4th 726.)

The CTC reporting requirement applies to actions involving any credential holder, including a substitute, temporary, probationary, or permanent teacher, certificated administrator, or other certificated employee such as a counselor, nurse, or school psychologist. Since the 1990s, the reporting requirement has become increasingly strict, with greater penalties for noncompliance.

School districts, county offices of education, and charter schools must ensure these reports are made within 30 days of the employee’s separation or other adverse employment action, or within 10 days of a credential holder being charged with an enumerated sex or drug offense pursuant to Education Code section 44940(d).

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