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Workforce Diversity Plan: VI. Human Resources Practices

The District’s human resource management policies and practices pose the greatest potential for illegal discrimination. Human resources policies and practices normally are not intended to discriminate or somehow have a disparate impact on women, people of color, people with disabilities, or other protected groups. It should be noted, however, that systemic discrimination, while unintentional, is most often the major barrier to equal employment opportunity; yet, it is the most difficult to detect. That is the reason human resource policies and practices must be reviewed and corrective actions taken when they are found to inadvertently discriminate or offer less than equal opportunity to women, people of color, or people with disabilities. Responsibility for human resource management includes all officials, administrators, and supervisors in addition to the staff of the Human Resources Department.

Recruitment, examination, selection and placement procedures will be continually reviewed for all licensed, classified and administrative positions. From the initial contact with potential applicants to the final interview and selection of employees, the Human Resources Department and its practices will address the following:

6.1.1 Recruitment And Selection Process will not have the effect of blocking people of color, women, and people with disabilities from district employment and promotions. Where blockages, or potential blockages, are identified, corrective actions will be taken to make the process more inclusive to diversity.

6.1.2 Targeted Recruitment, as described in Section 6.2, will be undertaken to address areas of underrepresentation. This expanded recruitment is to be focused on increasing the number of people of color, women, and people with disabilities who apply for employment; and, thus increasing the probability of qualified candidates from underrepresented groups being selected to fill vacant positions. Recruitment activities will be inclusive rather than being exclusive.

6.1.3 Selection Criteria to be used in candidate recruitment, screening, interviewing and selection should reflect the essential functions of the job. All selection criteria are to be job-related, preestablished, and applied consistently. Additionally, in the selection of teachers, administrators, and professional staff the district will give priority consideration to relevant, specialized, and qualitative training and experience that demonstrates ability to work with diverse populations. This consideration will include, but not be limited to, such factors as:

  1. Ability to relate to diverse student, parent and community groups;
  2. Experience in working with children and parents from different racial/ethnic minority groups;
  3. Experience and training in multicultural education programs;
  4. Evidence that applicant is aware of and sensitive to the changing roles and perceptions of women, people of color, and people with disabilities in our society.

6.1.4 Applications, Tests Or Examinations for employment and promotion, including oral interviews, will be monitored to ensure that they are unbiased and do not have adverse impact on people of color, women, the disabled or other protected groups. Reasonable accommodation will be made available upon request to ensure that persons with disabilities are not excluded from the application and examination process.

6.1.5 Selection Committees will include people of color, people with disabilities, and gender balance to the extent possible. Parents of students with disabilities will be included in the selection of special education teachers to the extent feasible and practical. Selection committees will be made aware of the district’s WorkForce Diversity goals.

6.1.6 Selection and Appointment of an employee will be based on job-related qualifications, merit, district goals, and program needs.

Where the district has determined that people of color, women, or people with disabilities are significantly underrepresented in relation to their availability for specific job groups, the district will initiate a targeted recruitment approach that includes, but is not limited to, the following steps:

6.2.1 Request to Post a Vacancy
The request to post a vacancy will be submitted to the appropriate HR administrator by the principal or supervisor.

6.2.2 HR Review of Request
The appropriate HR administrator will review the request to post a vacancy to determine if it is in an identified focus job group. A focus job group is one in which women (and in some case, men) or minorities are determined to be significantly underrepresented in relation to their availability in the relevant labor market. If the vacancy is not in a focus job group, the HR administrator will approve the request and initiate the vacancy announcement process. If the vacancy is in an identified focus job group for which there is not a pre-established targeted recruitment plan, the HR administrator will notify the hiring administrator that it is necessary to jointly develop a targeted recruitment plan for the vacant position.

6.2.3 HR Initiates Targeted Recruitment
The targeted recruitment plan developed in conjunction with the hiring administrator(s), or the appropriate components of the preestablished plan are implemented.

6.2.4 Elements of Targeted Recruitment Plan
The targeted recruitment plan will be developed in conjunction with the hiring administrator(s) and will include, but not be limited to, the following elements:

  1. Selective recruitment sources identified and personally contacted by HR or appropriate administrator
  2. Establishment of internet recruitment sources
  3. Extended timeframe for posting of positions
  4. Identification and use of supplemental factors related to cultural competency or bilingual/ bicultural factors
  5. Definition and clarification of “essential functions” of the position
  6. Ongoing review and monitoring of applications by HR
  7. Use of community persons and/or current and retired teachers/administrators as consultants/resources to assist in identifying and recruiting potential applicants

The district supports broad-based involvement in the hiring and selection process. Principals and department directors are encouraged to use staff, parents, community, and students as appropriate in the screening and interviewing process to fill position vacancies.

6.3.1 The hiring administrator (department director, building principal, etc.) will ensure that the hiring process is consistent with the board’s workforce diversity policy and this WorkForce Diversity Plan.

6.3.2 Where the hiring administrator makes use of a selection committee in the hiring process, the hiring administrator will ensure that the committee’s actions do not conflict with board policies or this plan.

6.3.3 The Human Resources Department will design and provide training and materials for administrators and selection committee members that will ensure they are familiar with and understand their obligations and responsibilities as part of the selection process.

Affirmative action does not end when the employment process has resulted in placement. Although the major thrust of affirmative action is the identification and elimination of barriers that preclude the hiring of women, people of color, and other disadvantaged persons, its subsequent and logical efforts must be directed toward fair and equitable treatment of all employees, the application of consistent human resource management practices, and the provision of equal opportunities for promotion and advancement. The administration of sound and equitable human resource policies and practices in a consistent manner will contribute greatly toward accomplishing the goals of workforce diversity.

Job classification is the organization and grouping of similar positions in the district into groups or classes on the basis of similar, or related, duties, responsibilities, and qualification requirements. The need for job classifications is apparent not only in connection with equitable compensation levels but also in matters of selection, placement, promotion, transfer, and training. The general objective of job classifications and the job classification plan is for efficient management of functions, but just as important is the equal treatment of employees in terms of appointments, pay, opportunities for training and advancement.

6.5.1 Job classifications will continually be reviewed and modified to ensure qualification requirements are job related and are not barriers to qualified people of color, women, and people with disabilities in seeking employment and promotions, and that selection criteria are consistent with the provisions of Section 6.1.3.

The Equal Pay Act requires that equal wages and salaries be paid for substantially equal or similar work performed by men and women. Title VII requires equal pay regardless or race, national origin, religion, or sex. The more subtle type of pay discrimination is perhaps the most difficult to deal with because of its historical entrenchment in the personnel and pay system, as well as stereotypical value judgments placed on the type of work and who does it. Despite the increasing number of women in the labor force, the U.S. Department of Labor continues to report pay gaps between men and women, and racial/ethnic minorities and non-minorities.

Title IX provides that all benefits and conditions of employment shall be equally available without discrimination to all employees – male and female. This includes medical, hospital, accident and life insurance, retirement benefits, leaves and other terms or conditions of employment.

6.6.1 The Human Resources Department will periodically review and monitor on an ongoing basis the wage and salary distribution to identify discrepancies in pay between men and women and racial/ethnic minorities and non-minorities.

6.6.2 The Human Resources Department will ensure that all benefits and conditions of employment are equally available without discrimination to all employees, including opportunities for transfer or reassignment that may affect an employee’s compensation and benefits.

Training helps to equip employees for higher responsibilities or to diversify their skills. Administration and employees share responsibility for the learning experiences that are presumed to develop from training. However, because of past experiences, racial/ethnic minorities and women justifiably have felt that even if they obtain the necessary training, education, and qualifications, they still will be denied the opportunity for higher level positions. The district must not only offer the promise that qualified people of color and women will be able to obtain positions commensurate with their ability, but also provide and encourage the necessary training and education that will qualify them for these positions. Likewise, as the demographics of the district and community continue to change, it is important that all employees, but especially those in supervisory and managerial roles, be provided training in cultural competence, and combatting prejudice, racism and harassment.

6.7.1 The district will continually explore and design training and internship programs directed towards preparing minority and women candidates for higher level positions.

6.7.2 All supervisors and managers will be provided cultural competency and diversity training that focuses on awareness and skill development, as well as prejudice reduction.

Promotion is generally defined as a move to a position or classification having a higher pay grade or salary range. Equal opportunity for promotion and advancement applies to all aspects of employment and to all levels of the organizational hierarchy. This means that people of color, women and people with disabilities must be considered for higher level administrative and supervisory jobs for which they are trained or are otherwise qualified.

6.8.1 The district will review its policies and practices pertaining to internal promotions and take actions to correct any “glass ceiling” barriers which inhibit advancement of women and people of color.

6.8.2 In considering supervisors and managers for promotion and advancement, consideration will be given to the supervisor’s or manager’s record in promoting and supporting the District’s workforce diversity policy. The Human Resources Department will establish a process for acquiring and documenting information related to this provision.

In addition to taking steps to ensure that racial/ethnic minorities, women, and people with disabilities are provided equal opportunities for hiring and promotion, it is equally important that as individuals from these groups move into areas where they are unrepresented or significantly underrepresented that their experience in the workplace is a positive one.

6.9.1 Schools and departments will ensure that employees from diverse backgrounds are not subjected to behaviors or attitudes that send the message they are unwelcome or that they do not belong. This is particularly true as persons from underrepresented groups move into job categories from which they traditionally have been excluded or discouraged from pursuing.