Grievance Procedure

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About Grievances

A grievance is a way for a faculty member to challenge actions taken against them by management. Protection against grievances are enforced by the the terms of our union's collective bargaining agreement in which we, the Faculty Association, of Rancho Santiago community college (FARSCCD) have with the our district.  If you believe your rights under the contract have been violated, you can file a grievance to seek a formal resolution to the dispute.

The grievance procedure will not help you fight every unfair thing an administrator may do to a faculty member, but it will help you enforce the rights guaranteed you by our union's contract!

Grievances are violations, misinterpretations, or misapplications of the contract; violations of the law, Board Policy. Common decency are not necessarily covered. If unsure whether your issue constitutes as a "grievance" under our union contract, ask for the assistance of your FARSCCD Grievance Specialist.Jim Isbell  714-564-6989   or  Mark Smith  714-628-4959

STEP 1: Contact your FARSCCD Grievance Specialist

Contact the union for assistance as soon as a negative action is taken against you. Reach out to your “FARSCCD Grievance Specialist” for help in determining if you have a case. If you do have a case, your options for recourse will be discussed with you. ⇒ FARSCCD Grievance Specialists contact info:  Jim Isbell  714-564-6989   or  Mark Smith   714-628-4959   

To prepare for your meeting with your FARSCCD Grievance Specialist, gather any important documents such as past and current semester Assignment Request Forms, past and current work offers, and any other documents you believe may be helpful to the case. Hand deliver, or mail the documents to your union representative, so that he or she may assist you in determining if there has been a violation of the contract.

Note: Throughout the grievance process, you may, at any time, request the assistance of your union representative to help advise, and/or act for or fully represent you during the process.  

STEP 2: LEVEL ONE - File a Statement of Grievance with your supervisor.

Deliver a completed Statement of Grievance form within twenty (20) days of the occurrence of the alleged grievance or within twenty (20) days of the date you knew or should have known of the alleged grievance.

Also, submit a copy to your FARSCCD Grievance Specialist.


Download Statement of Grievance 
form as MS Word document

Download Statement of Grievance 
form as an Adobe pdf
STEP 3: Wait for your supervisor's response to your Statement of Grievance

Your supervising administrator (or designee) is required to deliver their reply to your Statement of Grievance, in writing, stating their suggestions for relief, remedy, or action regarding your stated grievance, within five (5) days of receiving your Statement of Grievance form.

In the unfortunate event you are unsatisfied with your supervisor's written response, you have five (5) days to proceed to Level Two: Filing an appeal to the college president.

STEP 4: LEVEL TWO - File an appeal to the college president

If you have received the supervisor's response regarding your stated grievance, and are not satisfied with the decision, you may appeal it by completing the Level TWO form, and delivering it to the college president.

You have five (5) days after receiving the supervisor's written response to submit this Level Two form to the college president.

Include with your Level Two form:

1) a copy of your Statement of Grievance with the supervisor's response.

2) a brief letter clarifying your reason(s) for believing that an appeal is warranted.

Submit a copy to your FARSCCD Grievance Specialist.


Download the Level Two Appeal 
Form as MS Word document

Download the Level Two 
Appeal Form as an Adobe pdf
STEP 5: Wait for a response from the college president.

The College President (or designee) shall communicate the decision in writing to you within ten (10) days.

Either you or the college president (or designee) may request a personal conference within the above time limits.

Any such meeting shall be by mutual agreement.

If you are not satisfied with the written response you recieve from the college president, you may appeal it to the Chancellor (or designee) by completing and sending the Level Three form within five (5) days of receipt of the college president's response.

STEP 6: LEVEL THREE - File an appeal with the Chancellor

If you are not satisfied with the written response you receive from the college president, you may appeal it to the Chancellor (or designee) by completing the Level Three form.

Include with your Level Three form:

1) a copy of your Statement of Grievance with the supervisor's response.

2) Your letter clarifying your reason(s) for believing that an appeal is warranted.

Be sure to submit your required forms to the Chancellor within five (5) days of receipt of the college president's response.

Also submit a copy of the forms to your FARSCCD Grievance Specialist.


Download the Level Three 
Appeal Form as MS Word document

Download the Level Three 
Appeal Form as an Adobe pdf
STEP 7: Wait for a response from the Chancellor.

The Chancellor (or designee) shall deliver his or her decision to you in writing within fifteen (15) days of receiving your appeal documentation.

Either you or the college president (or designee) may request a personal conference within the above time limits.

Any such meeting shall be by mutual agreement.

After receiving the response from the Chancellor, you find you are not satisfied, you may proceed to Level Four.

STEP 8: LEVEL FOUR – FARSCCD Arbitration

A. Within twenty (20) days after the decision of the Chancellor (or designee) or after no decision has been given by the Chancellor, you may request that the Faculty Association (FARSCCD) submit the grievance to binding arbitration by filing a request for arbitration with the
Chancellor.

B. If arbitration is requested by FARSCCD, the grievant and the District shall attempt to agree upon an impartial arbitrator. If no agreement can be reached, they shall request the California State Mediation and Conciliation Service (SMCS) to supply a list of seven names of persons experienced in hearing grievances in community college matters. Each party shall alternately strike a name until one name remains. The remaining panel member shall be impartial arbitrator. The order of striking shall be determined by toss of a coin.

C. The reasonable and customary fees and expenses of the arbitrator and the hearing shall be borne equally by the District and the Association. When
requested by the association, the grievant and all necessary witnesses shall be provided release time at District expense for the time during which they are needed at the hearing. All other expenses shall be borne by the party incurring them.

D. The arbitrator shall, as soon as possible, hear evidence and render a decision on the issue or issues submitted. The arbitrator shall establish as early a hearing date as is practical. A date for the hearing must be selected within ninety (90) days of the date of selection of the arbitrator, or either the Association or the District may request a new arbitrator.

E. The arbitrator will have no power to add to, subtract from, or modify the terms of this Agreement between the District and the Association. If the arbitrator’s findings and conclusions establish that a monetary award is necessary to enforce the terms of the Agreement so as to fully remedy the wrong to the grievant, such an award shall be made.

F. The decision of the impartial arbitrator shall be final and binding to the parties.

G. Either party may request a certified court reporter to record the entire arbitration hearing. The cost of the services of such court reporter shall be paid by the party requesting the reporter or shared by the parties if they mutually agree. If the arbitrator requests a court reporter, the costs shall be shared by both parties.

H. The hearing need not be conducted in accordance with technical rules relating to evidence and witnesses but hearings shall be conducted in a manner most conducive to determination of the truth. Any relevant evidence may be admitted if it is the type of evidence on which reasonable persons are
accustomed to rely in the conduct of serious affairs regardless of the existence  of any common law or statutory rules which might make improper the admission of such evidence over objection in civil actions. Hearsay evidence may be used for the purpose of supplementing or explaining any direct evidence but shall not be sufficient in itself to support a finding unless it would be admissible over objection in civil actions. The rules dealing with privileges shall be effective to the same extent that they are now or hereafter may be recognized in civil actions, and irrelevant and unduly repetitious evidence may be excluded. Decisions made by the Arbitrator shall not be invalidated by any informality in the proceedings, and the Arbitrator shall not be bound by technical rules of evidence.