Adventures in Ed Funding

School District HR in the Time of COVID-19

December 10, 2020 California Association of School Business Officials (CASBO) Season 1 Episode 36
Adventures in Ed Funding
School District HR in the Time of COVID-19
Show Notes

What has it been like for school district human resources departments during these many months of pandemic? What are key challenges faced and lessons learned from recruiting, hiring and negotiating in a virtual environment? In this episode, special guest Norma Gonzales, Assistant Superintendent of HR and Interim Associate Superintendent of Business Services in Washington Unified School District in West Sacramento, helps us explore HR topics essential to school district operations.

Human Resources, as Norma says, is all about people. But at a time when we are so often physically distanced, it's more vital than ever to try to carry out the various HR functions in ways that maintain personal connections with those around us.

Norma is an HR expert who has served in leadership positions for several school districts and a county office of education during the past two decades. She joined Washington USD in April 2019. The district, which is situated in Yolo County just across the river from the state's capital, has more than 7,000 students spread across elementary, middle and high school campuses and nearly 800 employees.

Norma offers insight into:

  • How HR operations in her district have changed since March;
  • The issue staff has been bringing up most often to the HR team;
  • How recruiting and hiring new staff is happening remotely;
  • Early lessons learned from conducting collective bargaining negotiations virtually; and
  • Meeting the potential need for substitute teachers during this time.

Plus, Norma shares some tips about virtual interviews for those who may be seeking a new position -- and she describes what she's most looking forward to once we are all past this pandemic.

Norma also served as one of the presenters for the recent CASBO Human Resources Summit and discussed tips for conducting investigations during the pandemic. Find more information about that and all of the latest professional development offerings at

Follow on Twitter: @NormaVGonzales1
Contact at:


CASBO is the premier resource for professional development and business best practices for California's school business leaders. Be sure to visit for the latest budget news and more information about the many valuable professional development programs, including the new CASBO Work Wise Webinar Series. Follow on Twitter at @CASBO


Your series guide Paul Richman is a public education advocate and consultant. Follow on Twitter at @pjr100.

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