Every week many private and public entities across the state welcome new employees to the job. These workers are knowledgeable about the broad scope of the tasks ahead, or they wouldn't have been hired in the first place. Nonetheless, their employers understand they will face a learning curve. Adjustments are made until the worker is up to speed.
The same holds true for elected panels, such as school boards and city councils. No one in a community would expect a newly-elected representative to have in-depth knowledge of all the inner workings of such a body, no matter how many public meetings he or she attended prior to being elected. Nor would they have knowledge of matters that have been legitimately kept behind closed doors. There is time to learn these things without causing any harm to the community at large.
Apparently the Burbank City Council is not as confident about the ability of newbies to catch on. A dozen years ago, its members amended the municipal code to allow individuals who have been elected to the council — but not yet sworn in — attend closed sessions. It was their reasoning that city business would be negatively impacted if the new person didn't learn about pending litigation and other matters before becoming a full-fledged member of the council.