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LAUSD Teachers Found Exempt Under Wage Order 4

Public school adult education teachers are exempt under IWC Wage Order 4, and Los Angeles Unified School District's pay structure for them has been found to comply with Education Code § 45025. Kettenring v. Los Angeles Unified School District (2008) 167 Cal.App.4th 507.

LAUSD pays adult education teachers a regular periodic amount, identified as a “salary” in the applicable collective bargaining agreement, figured by multiplying a flat hourly rate for each hour of classroom teaching. LAUSD does not pay for additional time spent outside of classroom instruction for preparation, grading or other tasks in connection with the class. Ernest Kettenring, an adult education teacher in the District, filed a class action lawsuit alleging that the compensation structure violates state minimum wage laws. At the parties’ request, the trial court ruled on “threshold legal issues” based on stipulated facts, and determined that the Labor Code’s minimum wage provisions did not apply to the District. Kettenring then filed a petition for a writ of mandate arguing that the structure as applied to part-time adult education teachers violated the Education Code. The trial court denied the petition. Kettenring appealed. We conclude that adult education teachers fall within the professional exemption to Wage Order 4-2001. We also affirm the court’s conclusion that the salary structure does not violate Education Code § 45025, which requires proportional compensation for part-time employees.

You can download the full text of Kettenring here in PDF or Word format. A petition for review was denied by the Supreme Court.


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