Department Chair & Grade Level Chair Selection


District Department Chair (secondary

& Grade Level (elementary) Elections:

A contractual selection process is required.



Greetings, CUSD Faculty,


CAUSE Leadership has received inquiries on the selection process for CUSD Department Chairs (secondary) & Grade Level Chairs (elementary). These Department Chair / Grade Level Chair positions are critical to the functional operations of the teaching and learning environment.  Department Chair / Grade Level Chair positions and expectations are protected in our collective bargaining agreement.  These Chairs serve as faculty diplomats; working in coordination with our District administrators.

CUSD Department Chairs (secondary) & Grade Level Chairs (elementary):

* represent the interests of their department and/or grade level faculty colleagues

* clarify professional experiences, insights, concerns, questions, etc.

* transparently share the impact of administrative decisions on the teaching and learning environment

As grade levels (elementary) and departments (secondary) work to formalize their internal leadership positions through Spring of 2024, CAUSE Leadership reminds District faculty and administrators that the ONLY processes governing Department Chair & Grade Level Chair selection are set forth in the Certificated Collective Bargaining Agreement (CERTIFICATED – CBA) * Article 6: Compensation & Benefits (see attached).

At this time, as the Union works to update the CBA itself, we have provided the relevant contract language that clarifies the unique selection process for either Grade Level Chairs (elementary) or Department Chairs (secondary):

Elementary Grade Level Chairs:

6.9.2 * Grade Level Chairs (K-5, 1 per grade) shall receive 6 RLs. Every spring an invitation to apply for elementary Grade Level Chairs for the following year will be sent to elementary. Chairperson decisions will be announced before the end of the school year.


Secondary (CMS / CHS /Rincon) Department Chairs:

6.9.3 * Department Chairperson Selection Process: A department chairperson shall be biennially nominated in writing at the March department meeting or at any time following the regular February department meeting and before the regular March department meeting. The election shall be at the regular March or April department meeting. Except as set out in the Education Code, the term of the department chair shall be two years. The vote to select the chairperson shall be weighted by the number of periods taught in that department by each employee who works in the department. Each person shall be allotted one vote for each period he or she teaches in the department.

For Secondary faculty: In any Department where the current Chair has either…

(A) completed the second year of service since being elected


(B) was not elected by their peers according to the contractual processes cited above

Department Chairs & Grade Level Chairs are required to resolve the contractual selection process for their positions to be valid. Upon completion of the selection process, whether your department is maintaining its current elected leadership or experiencing turnover based on Spring 2024 elections, please make sure to notify your current site-principals and Union Leadership of the outcomes associated with elected Department Chairs & Grade Level Chairs for the 2024-2025 school year.

Moving forward, please feel free to contact Union leadership with any questions, concerns, or suggestions.

In Unity,


~ j. Hotchner * CAUSE President


C.A.U.S.E. – Yes We Can ! *