Exempt Status of Private School Teachers

Governor Jerry Brown signed SB 621 into law, which modifies portions of California Labor Code Section 515.8 to facilitate the implementation of the salary test used to determine the exempt employee status of private school teachers.

The SB 621 law does three things:

  • Establishes a pro-rated salary threshold for part-time teachers. Effective January 1, 2018, part-time private school teachers can be deemed exempt employees if – in addition to satisfying all other requirements of Labor Code Section 515.8 – they meet a pro-rated minimum salary threshold.
  • Permits private school administrators to use public school data from the prior year to calculate the salary threshold determinations. Private schools typically execute contracts with teachers in advance of a new school year, and school administrators must create budgets well before making such commitments. During the budgeting process it may be difficult – and in some cases, impossible – to obtain public school teacher salary data for a coming school year. To cut private school administrators some needed slack, SB 621 permits salary data in effect “for up to 12 months prior to the start of the school year,” to be used when making the necessary calculations.
  • Clarifies that the word “county” in the subsection of Labor Code Section 515.8 dealing with the calculation of the minimum salary threshold, refers to county offices of education.

If you think your work rights have been violated, please contact the attorneys at the California Employment Legal Group today for a consultation with an experienced employment lawyer who will clearly explain your rights and options under the law.