TABLE OF CONTENTS

SECTION 3—CERTIFIED PERSONNEL

3.1—LICENSED PERSONNEL SALARY SCHEDULE

3.2—LICENSED PERSONNEL EVALUATIONS

3.3—EVALUATION OF CERTIFIED PERSONNEL BY RELATIVES

3.4—LICENSED PERSONNEL REDUCTION IN FORCE

3.5 CERTIFIED PERSONNEL CONTRACT RETURN

3.6—LICENSED PERSONNEL EMPLOYEE TRAINING

3.7 CERTIFIED PERSONNEL DRUG TESTING

3.8—CERTIFIED PERSONNEL SICK LEAVE

3.9—LICENSED PERSONNEL SICK LEAVE BANK

3.10—LICENSED PLANNING TIME

3.11—CERTIFIED PERSONNEL PERSONAL AND PROFESSIONAL LEAVE

3.11B—CERTIFIED PERSONNEL PROFESSIONAL LEAVE

3.11C— CERTIFIED PERSONNEL VACATION POLICY

3.12—CERTIFIED PERSONNEL RESPONSIBILITIES IN DEALING WITH SEX OFFENDERS ON CAMPUS

3.13—CERTIFIED PERSONNEL PUBLIC OFFICE

3.14—CERTIFIED PERSONNEL JURY DUTY

3.15—CERTIFIED PERSONNEL LEAVE — INJURY FROM ASSAULT

3.16—CERTIFIED PERSONNEL REIMBURSEMENT FOR PURCHASE OF SUPPLIES

3.17—INSULT OR ABUSE OF CERTIFIED PERSONNEL

3.18—CERTIFIED PERSONNEL OUTSIDE EMPLOYMENT

3.19—CERTIFIED PERSONNEL EMPLOYMENT

3.20—CERTIFIED PERSONNEL REIMBURSEMENT OF TRAVEL EXPENSES

3.21—LICENSED PERSONNEL TOBACCO USE

3.22—DRESS OF CERTIFIED EMPLOYEES

3.23—CERTIFIED PERSONNEL POLITICAL ACTIVITY

3.24—CERTIFIED PERSONNEL DEBTS

3.25—CERTIFIED PERSONNEL GRIEVANCES

3.25F—CERTIFIED PERSONNEL LEVEL TWO GRIEVANCE FORM

3.26—CERTIFIED PERSONNEL SEXUAL HARASSMENT

3.27—CERTIFIED PERSONNEL SUPERVISION OF STUDENTS

3.28—CERTIFIED PERSONNEL COMPUTER USE POLICY

3.28F—CERTIFIED PERSONNEL EMPLOYEE INTERNET USE AGREEMENT

3.29—CERTIFIED PERSONNEL SCHOOL CALENDAR

3.30—PARENT-TEACHER COMMUNICATION

3.31—DRUG FREE WORKPLACE - CERTIFIED PERSONNEL

3.31F—DRUG FREE WORKPLACE POLICY ACKNOWLEDGEMENT

(PENDING)

3.32—LICENSED PERSONNEL FAMILY MEDICAL LEAVE *

3.33—ASSIGNMENT OF EXTRA DUTIES FOR CERTIFIED PERSONNEL

3.34—LICENSED PERSONNEL CELL PHONE USE

3.35—CERTIFIED PERSONNEL BENEFITS

3.36—LICENSED PERSONNEL DISMISSAL AND NON-RENEWAL

3.37—ASSIGNMENT OF TEACHER AIDES

3.38—CERTIFIED PERSONNEL RESPONSIBILITIES GOVERNING BULLYING

3.39—PERSONNEL POLICY COMMITTEE ELECTION PROCEDURES

3.40—CERTIFIED PERSONNEL DUTY TO REPORT CHILD ABUSE, MALTREATMENT OR NEGLECT

3.41—CERTIFIED PERSONNEL VIDEO SURVEILLANCE AND

OTHER MONITORING

3.42—RELEASE of STUDENT’S FREE and REDUCED PRICE MEAL ELIGIBLITY INFORMATION

3.43—DUTY OF LICENSED EMPLOYEES TO MAINTAIN LICENSE IN GOOD STANDING

3.44—CERTIFIED PERSONNEL WORKPLACE INJURIES and WORKERS’ COMPENSATION

3.45—LICENSED PERSONNEL SOCIAL NETWORKING AND ETHICS

3.47—DEPOSITING COLLECTED FUNDS

3.48—LICENSED PERSONNEL WEAPONS ON CAMPUS

3.50—ADMINISTRATOR EVALUATOR CERTIFICATION


CERTIFIED PERSONNEL


3.1—LICENSED PERSONNEL SALARY SCHEDULE

 

District Salary Schedule

 

For the purposes of the salary schedule, a teacher will have worked a “year” if he/she works at least160 days. 2

 

For the purposes of this policy, a master’s degree or higher is considered “relevant to the employee’s position” if it is related to education, guidance counseling, or the teacher’s content area and has been awarded for successful completion of a program at the master’s level or higher by an institution of higher education accredited under Arkansas statutory requirements applicable at the time the degree was awarded.

 

Teachers who have earned additional, relevant degrees or sufficient college hours to warrant a salary change are responsible for reporting and supplying a transcript to ­­­Superintendent’s Office. All salary changes will be on a “go forward” basis, and no back pay will be awarded.

 

Arkansas Professional Pathway to Educator Licensure (APPEL) Program

 

Each employee newly hired by the district to teach under the Arkansas Professional Pathway to Educator Licensure (APPEL) Program shall initially be placed on the salary schedule in the category of a bachelor’s degree with no experience, unless the APPEL program employee has previous teaching experience which requires a different placement on the schedule. Upon receiving his/her initial or standard teaching license, the employee shall be moved to the position on the salary schedule that corresponds to the level of education degree earned by the employee which is relevant to the employee’s position. Employee’s degrees which are not relevant to the APPEL program's position shall not apply when determining his/her placement on the salary schedule. A teacher with a non-traditional provisional license shall be eligible for step increases with each successive year of employment, just as would a teacher possessing a traditional teaching license.

 

Licensed employee, seeking additional area or areas of licensure

 

Licensed employees who are working on an alternative licensure plan (ALP) to gain licensure in an additional area are entitled to placement on the salary schedule commensurate with their current license, level of education degree and years of experience. Degrees which are not relevant to the employee’s position shall not apply when determining his/her placement on the salary schedule.

 

 

 

 

Notes:                 A.C.A. § 6-11-129 requires employee contract information to be available on the district’s website and also identifies the contract items that must be redacted.

 

Act 1120 (codified at A.C.A. § 6-13-635) requires the Board to adopt a resolution that it has reviewed and adopted all salary increases of 5% or more, but most of the Act's listing of reasons are statutorily required raises and are paid by the state and not district funds. The Act's language requires the resolution even for an employee who moves from one position to another higher paying position such as going from teaching to administration. None-the -less, the resolution is required. Policy 1.9 directs the Board to review the salaries when adopting changes to this policy.

                Whereas, the superintendent has identified all changes from last school-year's published salary schedule, and has identified and presented the Board of Directors with each employee's salary increase of 5% or more as required under A.C.A. § 6-13-635 and created a spreadsheet explaining each;

                Therefore, the Berryville School District Board of Directors approves and resolves that the spread sheet including those explanations are a factual representation of the raises given for the 2014-15 school-year.

 

Cross Reference:             Policy 1.9—POLICY FORMULATION

Legal References:            A.C.A. § 6-17-201, 202, 2403

                                       A.C.A. § 6-20-2305(f)(4)                                   

                                        ADE Rules Governing School District Requirements for Personnel Policies, Salary                                        Schedules, Minimum Salaries, and Documents Posted to District Websites

 

Date Adopted:

Last Revised: May 30, 2014


 3.2—LICENSED PERSONNEL EVALUATIONS

 

Section One

 

For the purposes of this policy:

"Probationary principal" is a principal who has not completed three consecutive years of experience as a principal in an Arkansas school district. Any principal hired by the District who has completed his/her probationary period at another Arkansas district shall be considered probationary for the principal's first year of employment with the District.1 “Probationary principal” as used in this policy does not have the same meaning and legal significance as the words “probationary teacher” as it is used in the Teacher Fair Dismissal Act, A.C.A. 6-17-1501 et. seq. and therefore should only be applied in an evaluation context2  

 

"Probationary teacher" has the same definition as A.C.A. § 6-17-1502, and as interpreted by case law. 3 Due to the case law interpretations, “probationary” as used in this policy may or may not have the same meaning and legal significance as the word “probationary” as it is used in the Teacher Fair Dismissal Act statutes, A.C.A. 6-17-1501 et. seq.  

 

"Teacher" has the same definition as A.C.A. § 6-17-2803(19).

 

Teachers shall be evaluated at least annually, as required by law, on a schedule prepared by each school's principal or designee.

 

Teacher and principal evaluations shall be conducted at least annually, as required by law. The superintendent or designee(s) shall develop procedures to govern the evaluation process and timelines for the evaluations.

 

 

Section Two

 

Option 1 (Immediate, district-wide adoption, TESS/ LEADS counts for employment decisions)

 

Teachers and principals will be evaluated for continued employment purposes under the provisions and timelines of the Teacher Evaluation Support System (TESS) and Leader Excellence and Development System (LEADS) respectively.

Teachers will be evaluated under the schedule and procedures required by TESS. Each school-year, the district will conduct a summative evaluation on all probationary teachers as well as any teacher currently on an "intensive support" improvement plan or who has successfully completed intensive support or participated in an improvement plan during the current or previous school-year. All teachers not covered in the previous sentence will have a summative evaluation at least once every three years.

 

All teachers who do not have a summative evaluation shall develop a professional growth plan approved by the teacher's evaluator and their job performance will be measured based on that professional growth plan.

 

Principals will be evaluated using the evaluation rubric and other documentation of  LEADS. Probationary principals, those principals who have been placed on an Intensive Growth Plan or participated in an improvement plan, and those principals who have not had a summative evaluation for two years will have a summative evaluation. In the years in which a principal does not have a summative evaluation, the principal shall complete a Professional Growth Plan and other documents as required under LEADS and their job performance will be measured based on that professional growth plan.  

 

Legal References:   A.C.A. § 6-17-1501 et seq.

                                        A.C.A. § 6-17-2801 et seq.

Arkansas Department of Education Rules Governing the Teacher Excellence and Support System

 

Date Adopted:

Last Revised: May 30, 2014

3.3—EVALUATION OF CERTIFIED PERSONNEL BY RELATIVES

No person shall be employed in, or assigned to, a position which would require that he be evaluated by any relative, by blood or marriage, including spouse, parent, child, grandparent, grandchild, sibling, aunt, uncle, niece, nephew, or first cousin. An evaluating supervisor will be assigned by the Superintendent as needed.

No person shall be employed by the district who is an immediate family member (spouse, child, siblings, parent, grandparent or grandchild) of the Superintendent or the Assistant Superintendent.

Date Adopted: May 17, 2004 Last Revised: May 19, 2008


3.4—LICENSED PERSONNEL REDUCTION IN FORCE

SECTION ONE The School Board acknowledges its authority to conduct a reduction in force (RIF) when a decrease in enrollment or other reason(s) make such a reduction necessary or desirable. A RIF will be conducted when the need for a reduction in the work force exceeds the normal rate of attrition for that portion of the staff that is in excess of the needs of the district as determined by the superintendent.

In effecting a reduction in force, the primary goals of the school district shall be: what is in the best interests of the students; to maintain accreditation in compliance with the Standards of Accreditation for Arkansas Public Schools and/or the North Central Association; and the needs of the district. A reduction in force will be implemented when the superintendent determines it is advisable to do so and shall be effected through non-renewal, termination, or both. Any reduction in force will be conducted by evaluating the needs and long- and short- term goals of the school district, and by examining the staffing of the district in each licensure area and/or, if applicable, specific grade levels.

If a reduction in force becomes necessary in a licensure area or specific grade level(s), the RIF shall be conducted for each licensure area and/or specific grade level on the basis of each employee’s points as determined by the schedule contained in this policy. The teacher with the fewest points will be laid off first. In the event of a tie between two or more employees, the teacher(s) shall be retained whose name(s) appear first in the board’s minutes of the date of hire. There is no right or implied right for any teacher to “bump” or displace any other teacher. Being employed fewer than 160 days in a school year shall not constitute a year. It is each teacher’s individual responsibility to ensure his/her point totals are current in District files.

Points

• Years of service in the district—1 point per year

All licensed position years in the district count including non-continuous years. Service in any position not requiring teacher licensure does not count toward years of service. Being employed fewer than 160 days in a school year shall not constitute a year.

• Graduate degree in any area of licensure in which the teacher will be ranked (only the highest level of points apply) 1 point—Master’s degree 2 points—Master’s degree plus thirty additional hours 3 points—Educational specialist degree 4 points—Doctoral degree

• National Board of Professional Teaching Standards certification—3 points

• Additional academic content areas of endorsement as identified by the State Board— 1 point per area

• Licensure for teaching in a State Board identified shortage area—2 points

Multiple areas and/or grade levels of licensure as identified by the State Board —1 point per additional area or grade level as applicable. For example, a P-4 license or a 5-8 social studies license is each worth one point.

When the District is conducting a RIF, all potentially affected teachers shall receive a listing of licensed personnel with corresponding point totals. Upon receipt of the list, each teacher has ten (10) working days within which to appeal his or her assignment of points to the superintendent whose decision shall be final. Except for changes made pursuant to the appeals process, no changes will be made to the list that would affect a teacher’s point total after the list is released.

A teacher with full licensure in a position shall prevail over a teacher with greater points but who is lacking full licensure in that subject area. ―Full licensure‖ means an initial, or standard, non-contingent license to teach in a subject area or grade level, in contrast with a license that is provisional, temporary, or conditional on the fulfillment of additional course work or passing exams or any other requirement of the Arkansas Department of Education, other than the attainment of annual professional development training.      

Pursuant to any reduction in force brought about by consolidation or annexation and as a part of it, the salaries of all teachers will be brought into compliance, by a partial RIF if necessary, with the receiving district’s salary schedule. Further adjustments will be made if length of contract or job assignments change.3 A Partial RIF may also be conducted in conjunction with any job reassignment whether or not it is conducted in relation to an annexation or consolidation.

Recall:  

If a teacher is non-renewed from a 1.0 FTE  position  under this policy, he or she shall be offered an opportunity to fill any 1.0 FTE position vacancy for which he or she is required to hold a license as a condition of employment and for which he or she is qualified by virtue of education, license, or experience, as determined by the job requirements developed by the superintendent or designee, for a period of up to two (2) years, with  

the starting date of the two (2) year period being the date of board action on the non-renewal recommendation.    A teacher shall not have the right to be recalled to a licensed position that is less than a 1.0 full time equivalent (FTE), has less authority or responsibility, or that has a lower compensation level, index or stipend.  No right of  

recall shall exist for non-renewal from a stipend, or non-renewal or reduction of a stipend, or non-renewal to reduce contract length.  No teacher shall have any right to be recalled to any position that is for a longer contract period, has greater authority or responsibility, is for greater than the former FTE, or that is at a higher compensation level, index or stipend.  

The non-renewed teacher shall be eligible to be recalled for a period of two (2) years in reverse order of the layoff to any position for which he or she is qualified. Notice of vacancies shall be by first class mail to all teachers reasonably believed to be both qualified for and subject to rehire for a particular position and the non-renewed teachers shall have 10 working days from the date that the notification is mailed in which to conditionally accept

the offer of a position, with the actual offer going to the qualified teacher with the most points who responds within the 10 day time period. A lack of response or a teacher's refusal of a position shall end the district’s obligation to rehire the laid-off teacher and no further rights to be rehired shall exist.  

SECTION TWO

The employees of any school district which annexes to, or consolidates with, the Berryville District will be subject to dismissal or retention at the discretion of the school board, on the recommendation of the superintendent, solely on the basis of need for such employees on the part of the Berryville District, if any, at the time of the annexation or consolidation, or within ninety (90) days after the effective date of the annexation or consolidation. The need for any employee of the annexed or consolidated school district shall be determined solely by the superintendent and school board of the Berryville District.

Such employees will not be considered as having any seniority within the Berryville District and may not claim an entitlement under a reduction in force to any position held by a Berryville District employee prior to, or at the time of, or prior to the expiration of ninety (90) days after the consolidation or annexation, if the notification provision below is undertaken by the superintendent.

The superintendent shall mail or have hand-delivered the notification to such employee of his intention to recommend non-renewal or termination pursuant to a reduction in force within ninety (90) days of the effective date of the annexation or consolidation in order to effect the provisions of this section of the Berryville District’s reduction-in-force policy.  Any such employees who are non-renewed or terminated pursuant to Section Two are not subject to recall notwithstanding any language in any other section of this policy.  Any such employees shall be paid at the rate for each person on the appropriate level on the salary schedule of the annexed or consolidated district during those ninety (90) days and/or through the completion of the reduction-in-force process.  

This subsection of the reduction-in-force policy shall not be interpreted to provide that the superintendent must wait ninety (90) days from the effective date of the annexation or consolidation in order to issue notification of  

his intention to recommend dismissal through reduction-in-force, but merely that the superintendent has that period of time in which to issue notification so as to be able to invoke the provisions of this section.  

The intention of this section is to ensure that those Berryville District employees who are employed prior to the annexation or consolidation shall not be displaced by employees of the annexed or consolidated district by application of the reduction-in-force policy.

Notes:  1 Select either Option 1 or 2 on the basis of which system will work best for your district and its  students.

2 The list may be changed to reflect the beliefs of your district regarding what criteria are the most beneficial to students and the district. You may choose to add or delete additional criteria and/or change the value of the points given to each criterion. For example, you could choose to lessen or increase any of the point values for a criterion, or you could add or delete point categories.

3 For example: It may be discovered that a teacher is receiving a stipend for duties that he/she has not performed for several years.  As part of the reduction in force, the teacher would be sent notification by the superintendent that he/she intended to partially nonrenew the teacher excluding the obsolete stipend.

4 Select the option of your choice. If you choose Option B, the ninety (90) day time period may be lengthened or shortened (within reason) to suit your preference.

Legal Reference: A.C.A. § 6-17-2407

Date Adopted:  May 17, 2004

Last Revised:  July 1, 2013

3.5 CERTIFIED PERSONNEL CONTRACT RETURN

An employee shall have thirty (30) days from the date of the receipt of his contract for the following school year in which to return the contract, signed, to the office of the Superintendent. The date of receipt of the contract shall be presumed to be the date of a cover memo which will be attached to the contract.

Failure of an employee to return the signed contract to the office of the Superintendent within thirty (30) calendar days of the receipt of the contract shall operate as a resignation by the employee. No further action on the part of the employee, the Superintendent, or the School Board shall be required in order to make the employee’s resignation final.

Legal Reference:    A.C.A. § 6-17-1506 (c) (1)

Date Adopted: May 17, 2004

Last Revised:

3.6—LICENSED PERSONNEL EMPLOYEE TRAINING

 

For the purposes of this policy, professional development means a set of coordinated, planned learning activities for teachers and administrators that:

·      Is required by statute or the Arkansas Department of Education; or

·      Meets the following criteria:

o   Improves the knowledge, skills, and effectiveness of teachers;

o   Improves the knowledge and skills of administrators and paraprofessionals concerning effective instructional strategies and methods;

o   Leads to improved student academic achievement; and

o   Is researched-based and standards-based.

 

All employees shall attend all local professional development training sessions as directed by his/her supervisor.

 

The District shall develop and implement a plan for the professional development of its licensed employees. The District’s plan shall, in part, align District resources to address the professional development activities identified in each school’s ACSIP. The plan shall describe how the District’s categorical funds will be used to address deficiencies in student performance and any identified academic achievement gaps between groups of students. At the end of each school year, the District shall evaluate the professional development activities’ effectiveness in improving student performance and closing achievement gaps.

 

Each licensed employee shall receive a minimum of sixty (60) hours of professional development annually to be fulfilled between June 1 and May 31. Licensed employees are required to obtain their sixty (60) hours of approved professional development each year over a five-year period as part of licensure renewal requirements. Professional development hours earned in excess of sixty (60) in the designated year cannot be carried over to the next year.  

 

Licensed employees who are prevented from obtaining the required professional development hours due to their illness or the illness of an immediate family member as defined in A.C.A. § 6-17-1202  have until the end of the following school year to make up the deficient hours. Missed hours of professional development shall be made up with professional development that is substantially similar to that which was missed. This time extension does not absolve the employee from also obtaining the following year’s required 60 hours of professional development. Failure to obtain required professional development or to make up missed professional development could lead to disciplinary consequences, up to termination or nonrenewal of the contract of employment. 

 

The goal of all professional development activities shall be improved student achievement and academic performance that results in individual, school-wide, and system-wide improvement designed to ensure that all students demonstrate proficiency on the state’s assessments. The District’s professional development plan shall demonstrate scientifically research-based best practice, and shall be based on student achievement data and in alignment with applicable ADE Rules and/or Arkansas code.

 

Teachers and administrators shall be involved in the design, implementation, and evaluation of the plan for their own professional development. The results of the evaluation made by the participants in each program shall be used to continuously improve the District’s professional development offerings and to revise the school improvement plan.

 

Flexible professional development hours (flex hours) are those hours which an employee is allowed to substitute professional development activities, different than those offered by the District, but which still meet criteria of either the employee’s Individual Improvement Plan, Professional Growth Plan, the school’s ACSIP, or both. The District shall determine on an annual basis how many, if any, flex hours of professional development it will allow to be substituted for District scheduled professional development offerings. The determination may be made at an individual building, a grade, or by subject basis. The District administration and the building principal have the authority to require attendance at specific professional development activities. Employees must receive advance approval from the building principal for activities they wish to have qualify for flex professional development hours. To the fullest extent possible, professional development activities are to be scheduled and attended such that teachers do not miss their regular teaching assignments. Six (6) approved flex hours credited toward fulfilling the sixty (60) hour requirement shall equal one contract day. Hours of professional development earned by an employee that is not at the request of the District and is in excess of sixty (60) or not pre-approved by the building principal shall not be credited toward fulfilling the required number of contract days for that employee.2 Hours earned that count toward the required sixty (60) also count toward the required number of contract days for that employee. Employees shall be paid their daily rate of pay for professional development hours earned at the request of the District that necessitate the employee work more than the number of days required by their contract.

 

Teachers and administrators who, for any reason, miss part or all of any scheduled professional development activity they were required to attend, must make up the required hours in comparable activities which are to be pre-approved by the building principal.

 

To receive credit for his/her professional development activity each employee is responsible for obtaining and submitting documents of attendance, or completion for each professional development activity he/she attends. Documentation is to be submitted to the Superintendent or designee. The District shall maintain all documents submitted by its employees which reflect completion of professional development programs, whether such programs were provided by the District or an outside organization.

 

To the extent required by ADE Rules, employees will receive up to six (6) hours of educational technology professional development which is to be integrated within other professional development offerings.

 

Beginning in the 2013-14 school-year and every fourth year thereafter, all mandated reporters and licensed personnel shall receive the training related to child maltreatment required under A.C.A. § 6-61-133(d)(e)(2).

 

For the purposes of this training, "mandated reporters" includes school social workers, psychologists, and nurses.

 

Beginning in school-year 2014-15 and every fourth year thereafter, teachers shall receive two (2) hours of professional development designed to enhance their understanding of effective parental involvement strategies.

 

Beginning in school-year 2014-15 and every fourth year thereafter, administrators shall receive two (2) hours of professional development designed to enhance their understanding of effective parental involvement strategies and the importance of administrative leadership in setting expectations and creating a climate conducive to parental participation.

 

Beginning in the 2015-16 school-year and every fourth year thereafter, all licensed personnel shall receive two (2) hours of professional development in teen suicide awareness and prevention which may be obtained by self-review of suitable suicide prevention materials approved by ADE.

 

Beginning in the 2016-17 school-year and every fourth year thereafter, teachers who provide instruction in Arkansas history shall receive at least two (2) hours of professional development in Arkansas history as part of the teacher's sixty (60) hours annual requirement.

 

Anticipated rescuers shall receive training in cardiopulmonary resuscitation and the use of automated external defibrillators as required by ADE Rule. Such training shall count toward the required annual hours of professional development.

 

At least once every three (3) years, persons employed as athletics coaches, shall receive training related to concussions, dehydration, or other health emergencies as well as students’ health and safety issues related to environmental issues and communicable diseases.

 

All licensed personnel shall receive training related to compliance with the District’s antibullying policies.

 

For each administrator, the sixty (60) hour professional development requirement shall include training in data disaggregation, instructional leadership, and fiscal management.

 

Superintendents and other District designees shall receive the Initial, Tier 1, and Tier 2 training required by ADE’s Rules Governing the Arkansas Financial Accounting and Reporting System and Annual Training Requirements.

 

Teachers' professional development shall meet the requirements prescribed under the Teacher Evaluation Support System (TESS).3

 

Teachers required by the superintendent, building principal, or their designee to take approved training related to teaching an advance placement class for a subject covered by the College Board and Educational Testing Service shall receive up to thirty (30) hours of credit toward the sixty (60) hours of professional development required annually.

 

Licensed personnel may earn up to twelve (12) hours of professional development for time they are required to spend in their instructional classroom, office or media center prior to the first day of student/teacher interaction provided the time is spent in accordance with the state law and current ADE rules that deal with professional development. The hours may be earned through online professional development approved by the ADE provided the professional development relates to the district’s ASCIP and the teacher’s professional growth plan.

 

Teachers are eligible to receive fifteen (15) professional development hours for a three-hour graduate level college course that meets the criteria identified in law and the applicable ADE rules. The Board shall determine if the hours earned apply toward the required sixty (60). A maximum of thirty (30) such hours may be applied toward the sixty (60) hours of professional development required annually.

 

Employees who do not receive or furnish documentation of the required annual professional development jeopardize the accreditation of their school and academic achievement of their students. Failure of an employee to receive sixty (60) hours of professional development in any given year, unless due to illness as permitted by law, ADE Rule, and this policy, shall be grounds for disciplinary action up to and including termination.

 

Approved professional development activities may include conferences, workshops, institutes, individual learning, mentoring, peer coaching, study groups, National Board for Professional Teaching Standards Certification, distance learning, internships, District /school programs, and approved college/university course work.

 

Professional development activities shall relate to the following areas: content (K-12); instructional strategies; assessment; advocacy/leadership; systemic change process; standards, frameworks, and curriculum alignment; supervision; mentoring/coaching; educational technology; principles of learning/developmental stages; cognitive research; parent involvement; building a collaborative learning community; and student health and wellness.

 

 Notes:                 A.C.A. § 6-17-704(e) lists two categories of possible professional development that may count toward the required 60 hours of PD, but that isn’t required and consequently have not been added to the body of this policy. The two categories are; skills needed to teach students with disabilities, including autism, and teaching culturally and linguistically diverse students.

 

1 The Rules Governing Professional Development 4.02 require the District to choose the option it will follow and “document” its choice. The documentation may be noted by the selection chosen for this policy and also in the district’s “plan” for professional development required by A.C.A. § 6-17-704(c)(1).

 

2 The number of contract days may vary between employees, but the concern here is with the number of contract days specified in each individual employee’s contract.

 

3 TESS includes different requirements and restrictions on PD that is not otherwise prescribed by law or rule and that varies by whether the teacher has a summative evaluation and/or is on Intensive Support Status. Consult A.C.A. § 6-17-2806 for specifics.

 

 

Cross-Reference:             Policy 5.4—STAFF DEVELOPMENT PROGRAM               

 

 

Legal References:            Arkansas State Board of Education: Standards of Accreditation 15.04

ADE Rules Governing Professional Development

ADE Rules Governing the Arkansas Financial Accounting and Reporting System

and Annual Training Requirements

A. C.A. § 6-10-122, 123

A.C.A. § 6-15-404(f)(2)

A.C.A. § 6-15-1004(c)

A.C.A. § 6-15-1703

A.C.A. § 6-16-1203

A.C.A. § 6-17-703

A.C.A. § 6-17-704

A.C.A. § 6-17-708

A.C.A. § 6-17-709

A.C.A. § 6-17-2806

A.C.A. § 6-17-2808

A.C.A. § 6-20-2204

A.C.A. § 6-20-2303 (15)

A.C.A. § 6-61-133

 

Date Adopted:

Last Revised: May 30, 2014

3.7 CERTIFIED PERSONNEL DRUG TESTING

Scope of Policy

Each person hired for a position which requires that the employee operate any type of motor vehicle which is privately owned and operated for compensation, or which is owned, leased or otherwise operated by, or for the benefit of the District, and is operated for the transportation of children to or from school or school sponsored activity shall undergo a physical examination, including a drug test.

Methods of Testing

The collection, testing methods and standards shall be determined by the agency or other medical organizations chosen by the School Board to conduct the collection and testing of samples. The drug and alcohol testing is to be conducted by a laboratory certified pursuant to the most recent guidelines issued by the United States Department of Health and Human Services for such facilities. (“Mandatory Guidelines for Federal Workplace Drug Testing Programs”).

Definition

Safety sensitive function includes:

a)    All time spent inspecting, servicing, and/or preparing the vehicle;

b)    All time spent driving the vehicle;

c)    All time spent loading or unloading the vehicle or supervising the loading or unloading of the vehicle; and

d)    All time spent repairing, obtaining assistance, or remaining in attendance upon a disabled vehicle.

Requirements

Employees shall be drug and alcohol free from the time the employee is required to be ready to work until the employee is relieved from the responsibility for performing work and/or any time they are performing a safety-sensitive function. In addition to the testing required as an initial condition of employment, employees shall submit to subsequent drug tests as required by law and/or regulation. Subsequent testing includes, and/or is triggered by, but is not limited to:

1.    Random tests;

2.    Testing in conjunction with an accident;

3.    Receiving a citation for a moving traffic violation; and

4.    Reasonable suspicion.

Prohibitions

A. No driver shall report for duty or remain on duty requiring the performance of safety-sensitive functions while having an alcohol concentration of 0.04 or greater;

B. No driver shall use alcohol while performing safety-sensitive functions;

C. No driver shall perform safety-sensitive functions within four (4) hours after using alcohol;

D. No driver required to take a post-accident alcohol test under #2 above shall use alcohol for eight (8) hours following the accident or until he/she undergoes a post-accident alcohol test, whichever occurs first;

E.    No driver shall refuse to submit to an alcohol or drug test in conjunction with # 1, 2, and/or 4 above;

F.    No driver shall report for duty or remain on duty requiring the performance of safety-sensitive functions when using any controlled substance, except when used pursuant to the instructions of a licensed medical practitioner, knowledgeable of the driver’s job responsibilities, who has advised the driver that the

substance will not adversely affect the driver’s ability to safely operate his/her vehicle. It is the employee’s responsibility to inform his/her supervisor of the employee’s use of such medication;  

G. No driver shall report for duty, remain on duty, or perform a safety-sensitive function if the driver tests positive or has adulterated or substituted a test specimen for controlled substances.

Violation of any of these prohibitions may lead to disciplinary action being taken against the employee, which could include termination or non-renewal.

Testing for Cause

Drivers involved in an accident in which there is a loss of another person’s life shall be tested for alcohol and controlled substances as soon as practicable following the accident. Drivers shall also be tested for alcohol within eight (8) hours and for controlled substances within thirty two (32) hours following an accident for which they receive a citation for a moving traffic violation if the accident involved: 1) bodily injury to any person who, as a result of the injury, immediately receives medical treatment away from the scene of the accident, or 2) one or more motor vehicles incurs disabling damage as a result of the accident requiring the motor vehicle to be transported away from the scene by a tow truck or other motor vehicle.

Refusal to Submit

Refusal to submit to an alcohol or controlled substance test means that the driver

Consequences for Violations

Drivers who engage in any conduct prohibited by this policy, who refuse to take a required drug or alcohol test, or who exceed the acceptable limits for the respective tests shall no longer be allowed to perform safety- sensitive functions. Actions regarding their continued employment shall be taken in relation to their inability to perform these functions and could include termination or non-renewal of their contract of employment.

Drivers who exhibit signs of violating the prohibitions of this policy relating to alcohol or controlled substances shall not be allowed to perform or continue to perform safety-sensitive functions if they exhibit those signs during, just preceding, or just after the period of the work day that the driver is required to be in compliance with the provisions of this policy. This action shall be based on specific, contemporaneous, articulatable observations concerning the behavior, speech, or body odors of the driver.

The Superintendent or his/her designee shall require the driver to submit to “reasonable suspicion” tests for alcohol and controlled substances. The direction to submit to such tests must be made just before, just after, or during the time the driver is performing safety-sensitive functions. If circumstances prohibit the testing of the driver the Superintendent or his/her designee shall remove the driver from reporting for, or remaining on, duty for a minimum of 24 hours from the time the observation was made triggering the driver’s removal from duty.

If the results for an alcohol test administered to a driver is equal to or greater than 0.02, but less than 0.04, the driver shall be prohibited from performing safety-sensitive functions for a period not less than 24 hours from the time the test was administered. Unless the loss of duty time triggers other employment consequence policies, no further other action against the driver is authorized by this policy for test results showing an alcohol concentration of less than 0.04.

Legal Reference:    A.C.A. § 6-19-108 49 C.F.R. § 382-101 ␣ 605

49 C.F.R. § part 40

Date Adopted: May 17, 2004

Last Revised:

3.8—CERTIFIED PERSONNEL SICK LEAVE

 

Definitions

 

1. ―Employee‖ is a full-time employee of the District.

 

2. ―Sick Leave‖ is absence from work due to illness, whether by the employee or a member of the employee’s immediate family, or due to a death in the family. The principal shall determine whether sick leave will be approved on the basis of a death outside the immediate family of the employee.

 

3. ―Current Sick Leave‖ means those days of sick leave for the current contract year, which leave is granted at the rate of one day of sick leave per contracted month, or major part thereof.

 

4. ―Accumulated Sick Leave‖ is the total of unused sick leave, up to a maximum of ninety (90) days accrued from previous contract, but not used.

 

Sick Leave

The Berryville Board of Education shall provide sick leave for its teachers at a minimum rate of one (1) day per month for which the teacher is contracted at full pay. The principal has the discretion to approve sick leave for an employee to attend the funeral of a person who is not related to the employee, under circumstances deemed appropriate by the principal.

 

Pay for sick leave shall be at the employee’s daily rate of pay, which is that employee’s total contracted salary, divided by the number of days employed as reflected in the contract. Absences for illness in excess of the employee’s accumulated and current sick leave shall result in a deduction from the employee’s pay at the daily rate as defined above.

 

At the discretion of the principal (or Superintendent), the District may require a written statement of the employee’s physician. Failure to provide such documentation of illness may result in sick leave not being paid, or in dismissal.

 

Should a teacher be absent frequently during a school year, and if such a pattern of absences continues, or is reasonably expected to continue, the Superintendent may relieve the teacher of his assignment (with Board approval) and assign the teacher substitute duty at the teacher’s daily rate of pay. Should the teacher fail, or otherwise be unable, to report for substitute duty when called, the teacher will be charged a day of sick leave, if available.

 

Excessive absenteeism, whatever the cause, to the extent that the employee is not carrying out his assigned duties to an extent that the education of students is substantially adversely affected (at the determination of the principal or Superintendent) may result in dismissal.

 

Sick Leave and Family Medical Leave Act (FMLA) Leave

 

Employees are entitled to 12(twelve) weeks leave by the Family Medical Leave Act.  20

Employees are entitled to 12 weeks leave by the FMLA.

 

When an employee takes sick leave, the district shall determine if the leave qualifies for FMLA leave. The district may request additional information from the employee to help make the applicability1  determination. If the leave qualifies under the FMLA, the district will notify the employee, either orally or in writing2 , of the decision within two workdays. If the leave is intermittent as defined in this policy and the circumstances of the leave don’t change, the district is only required to notify the employee once of the determination regarding the applicability of sick leave and/or FMLA leave. To the extent the employee has accrued paid leave, any leave taken that qualifies for FMLA leave shall be paid leave and charged against the employee’s accrued leave. FMLA will be based on a school year which will begin July 1 and finish on June 30 of each year.

 

REIMBURSEMENT OF UNUSED SICK LEAVE

 

The Berryville Public Schools shall reimburse full time staff members for unused sick leave in accordance with the following:

1. Reimbursement shall be paid to all full time personnel, both certified and non-certified, for those unused sick leave days after the maximum of ninety (90) days has been accumulated.  

2. Each employee will receive a sum equal to the rate of substitute pay per day for those unused leave days in excess of the ninety (90) accumulated days.

3. Employees who retire from the Berryville School System will receive a sum equal to the rate of substitute pay per day for unused leave days, at the completion of all required retirement paperwork. Such reimbursement shall not be given when an individual transfers to another school system.

4. Employees who retired from and are rehired at the Berryville School System will receive a sum equal to the rate of substitute pay per day for unused leave days upon retiring a second time.

5. All applicable taxes are to be deducted from the reimbursement.

 

Notes: This policy is similar to Policy 8.5. If you change this policy, review 8.5 at the same time to ensure applicable consistency between the two.

 

1 As used in this policy, ―applicable‖ is a very important word. Some leave taken under FMLA also applies to sick leave and therefore, the employee will get paid for the leave to the extent the employee has sick leave accrued. Other leave taken under FMLA is not applicable to sick leave and therefore the FMLA leave is unpaid. For instance, ―applicable leave‖ in terms of time taken under FMLA due to the birth of a child will vary depending on the language in your district’s policy on sick leave. For instance, if sick leave may be taken ―for reason of personal illness or illness in the immediate family‖ (based on the statutory definition in 6-17-1202, and an employee gives birth to a child, she may take sick leave for the amount of time that her personal physician deems it necessary for her to physically recover from childbirth. Once the medically necessary time has passed, sick leave is no longer appropriate and cannot  21 be used. While under the FMLA, the employee could take additional time off work, she would need to take unpaid FMLA leave for this purpose, unless she had personal days or vacation days available. However, if your district has a much more liberal definition of sick leave in district policy, the results could be entirely different.

Another example would be the potential for overlap between pregnancy complications that arise to the level of a ―serious health condition.‖ For instance, pregnancy complications that rose to the level of a ―serious health condition‖ would qualify for both, while missing work for a dentist’s appointment would qualify for sick leave, but would not qualify for FMLA leave. Consult policy 3.32—CERTIFIED PERSONNEL FAMILY MEDICAL LEAVE when making the determination of what sick leave qualifies under both policies. It may also be helpful to consult 29 CFR 825.114 which is attached at the end of this policy.

2 If the notice is oral, it must be confirmed in writing no later than the following payday (unless the payday is less than one week after the notice, in which case the notice must be no later than the subsequent payday). The written notice may be in any form, including a notation on the employee’s pay stub.

 

Cross Reference: Policy 3.32—CERTIFIED PERSONNEL FAMILY MEDICAL LEAVE

 

Legal References: A.C.A. § 6-17-1201 et seq.

 29 USC §§ 2601 et seq.

 29 CFR 825.100 et seq.

Date Adopted: May 17, 2004

Last Revised: May 30, 2014

3.9—LICENSED PERSONNEL SICK LEAVE BANK

A sick leave bank is established for the purpose of permitting employees, upon approval, to obtain sick leave in excess of accumulated and current sick leave, when the employee has exhausted all such leave. Only those employees who contribute to the sick leave bank during a given contract year shall be eligible to withdraw from the sick leave bank.  

The Superintendent shall appoint a Sick Leave Bank Committee. That committee shall consist of six (6) members: five (5) teachers and one (1) principal.

The terms of the committee shall be for three years with two members being replaced each year.

The Committee shall meet as necessary for the purpose of reviewing requests for withdrawal from the bank. The determination of the committee shall be final.

Withdrawals

The Committee may grant sick leave up to 20 days per contract year for personal or family illness, disabilities or accidents (not including accidents for which the employee is receiving Workers’ Compensation), which cause the employee to be absent from work and when the employee has exhausted all accumulated and current sick leave.1   

Requests for withdrawal from the sick leave bank must state the reason(s) for the request and the number of days requested and must be accompanied by a detailed statement from an attending physician of the nature of the malady and the expected duration thereof.

If the information provided to the Committee is deemed by a majority of the Committee to be insufficient, the Committee may require additional information or deny the employee’s request, at its discretion.

The Committee shall have the authority to grant, reduce or deny any request. However, the Committee may grant no request, or any granted time may be withdrawn, when the employee accepts retirement; is eligible for Social Security Disability; or other disability insurance or the employee returns to work.

Spousal Donations

District employees who are husband and wife are eligible to utilize each other’s sick leave. Written permission must be received for each day of donated sick leave. If the employees are paid at different rates of pay, the lesser rate of pay shall be used for the purpose of the donated sick leave days.2

Notes:  This policy is TOTALLY optional. The law clearly permits, but does not require, the formation of a sick leave pool or bank. Before you adopt this policy, consider the following:

Can you afford it? Where are the sick leave days going to come from? Some districts give a sick leave committee the freedom to simply manufacture unearned sick leave days to distribute to applicants. Others take the more conservative route of requiring employees to donate earned days for redistribution. The most conservative route of all is to only allow donors to the bank to apply for a sick leave award, to strictly limit the number of days and/or the number of times any individual can request an award, or only permitting direct donation (individual to individual).

Our policy does not mix licensed and classified sick leave days, due to the value discrepancy. A $75 classified day could end up costing the district a $300 daily salary rate as well as the cost of the substitute, (transferring from a lower paying classified employee to a higher-paid teacher) and the difference would be absorbed by the school district. If you chose to merge sick leave banks, and have only one for all employees, please be mindful of this financial consideration. See footnote #2.

What will the effect be on instruction, and on your substitute costs? Any liberalization of sick leave results in more sick leave being used; the more liberal the policy or the more generous the sick leave pool or bank, the greater the demand for supplementary sick leave and the more days will be missed from work. A sick leave pool or bank takes a sick leave day away from someone who is highly unlikely to use it and transfers it to someone who is 100% likely to use it. Every teacher absence is a day of low or no student instruction.    

Sick leave, and a sick leave pool or bank was never intended to be a substitute for disability insurance in the event of a serious or long term illness. It simply cannot supply the long term income needs of persons who have become disabled and are unable to continue to work. Employees should be encouraged to consider purchasing supplemental disability insurance rather than rely on the pool or bank for such purposes. Districts may wish to consider adding this as a fringe benefit if the district’s financial condition permits.  

Some districts use a sick leave pool or bank like the appointed committee suggests in the model policy; others simply use the existing Personnel Policies Policy Committee rather than have to create an additional committee. Other districts have reported that committee members themselves dislike and are uncomfortable with the committee structure, and have asked for policy changes, giving the responsibility for administering sick leave bank requests to the superintendent or to another central office administrator. The decision-maker issue is something to consider carefully.  

This policy is similar to Policy 8.6. If you change this policy, please review policy 8.6 at the same time to ensure applicable consistency between the two.

1 

2 You may choose to include, or not include, this optional sentence. It is also allowable to have a stand-alone policy for this sentence if your district otherwise chooses not to have a sick leave bank. The rate of pay would be determined by the

employee receiving the lower wage. For example, one spouse might be licensed and the other classified. If the licensed employee received a day of sick leave from his/her spouse who is a classified employee making a lower wage, the sick leave would be valued at the lower wage. Example:  Teacher, whose daily rate is $150 a day, has a sick leave day transferred to her by her husband, who works as a custodian and whose daily rate is $75.  She would be credited $75 for the day instead of $150, due to her husband’s donation (or ½ the teacher’s rate for sick leave).

Legal Reference: A.C.A. § 6-17-1208

Date Adopted:  June 21, 2004

Last Revised:  July 1, 2013

3.10—LICENSED PLANNING TIME

The superintendent is responsible for ensuring master schedules are created which determine the timing and duration of each teacher’s planning and scheduled lunch periods. Planning time is for the purpose of scheduling conferences, instructional planning, and preparation. Each teacher will have the ability to schedule these activities during his/her designated planning time.1 Teachers may not leave campus during their planning time without prior permission from their building level supervisor.2

The planning time shall be in increments of not less than forty (40) minutes and shall occur during the student instructional day unless a teacher requests, in writing, to have his/her planning time occur outside of the student instructional day. For the purposes of this policy, the student instructional day means the time that students are required to be present at school.  

Notes: 

1 The Arkansas Attorney General Opinion 2005-299 has declared that the teacher must be in control of the scheduling of this time. Therefore, any time scheduled by the District that conflicts with the teacher’s 200 minutes of weekly planning time (for any purpose) must be compensated at the teacher’s hourly rate of pay.

2 This whole sentence is a local option. You can change it, if you desire, to let employees leave (or not be present) during their planning time without prior permission, or you could not allow them to leave at all during their planning time.

Legal Reference: ACA § 6-17-114 (a)(d)

Date Adopted:  May 27, 2004

Last Revised:  July 1, 2013

3.11—CERTIFIED PERSONNEL PERSONAL AND PROFESSIONAL LEAVE  

Personal Leave

For the district to function efficiently and have the necessary personnel present to effect a high achieving learning environment, employee absences need to be kept to a minimum. The district acknowledges that there are times during the school year when employees have personal business that needs to be addressed during the school day. Each full-time employee shall receive two (2) days of personal leave per contract year. The leave may be taken in increments of no less than half days.  

Employees shall take personal leave or leave without pay for those absences which are not due to attendance at school functions which are related to their job duties and do not qualify for other types of leave (for sick leave see Policy 3.9, for professional leave see below).  

School functions, for the purposes of this policy, means:

1. Athletic or academic events related to the school district; and

2. Meetings and conferences related to education.

For employees other than the superintendent, the determination of what activities meet the definition of a school function shall be made by the employee’s immediate supervisor or designee. For the superintendent, the school board of directors shall determine what activities meet the definition of a school function. In no instance shall paid leave in excess of allotted vacation days and/or personal days be granted to an employee who is absent from work while receiving remuneration from another source as compensation for the reason for their absence.  

Any employee desiring to take personal leave may do so by making a written request to his supervisor at least twenty-four (24) hours prior to the time of the requested leave. The twenty-four hour requirement may be waived by the supervisor when the supervisor deems it appropriate.  Personal leave shall not be taken the first two (2) or last two (2) weeks of school, and the days adjoining holidays, except for emergency.

Employees who fail to report to work when their request for a personal day has been denied or who have exhausted their allotted personal days, shall lose their daily rate of pay for the day(s) missed (leave without pay). While there are instances where personal circumstances necessitate an employee’s absence beyond the allotted days of sick and/or personal leave, any employee who requires leave without pay must receive advance permission (except in medical emergencies) from their immediate supervisor. Failure to report to work without having received permission to be absent is grounds for discipline, up to and including termination.  

Personal leave does not accumulate from one contract year to the next, unused personal days can be converted to sick leave days.

Professional Leave 

―Professional Leave‖ is leave granted for the purpose of enabling an employee to participate in professional activities (e.g., teacher workshops or serving on professional committees) which can serve to improve the school district’s instructional program or enhances the employee’s ability to perform his duties. Professional leave will also be granted when a school district employee is subpoenaed for a matter arising out of the employee’s employment with the school district. Any employee seeking professional leave must make a written request to his immediate supervisor, setting forth the information necessary for the supervisor to make an informed decision. The supervisor’s decision is subject to review and overruling by the superintendent. Budgeting concerns and the potential benefit for the district’s students will be taken into consideration in reviewing a request for professional leave.

Applications for professional leave should be made as soon as possible following the employee’s discerning a need for such leave, but, in any case, no less then two (2) weeks before the requested leave is to begin, if possible.

If the employee does not receive or does not accept remuneration for their participation in the professional leave activity and a substitute is needed for the employee, the district shall pay the full cost of the substitute. If the employee receives and accepts remuneration for their participation in the professional leave activity (e.g. scholastic audits or praxis assessments), the employee shall forfeit his/her daily rate of pay from the district for the time the employee misses.  

Notes:  While you are not required to provide employees with personal days, you are required to have a policy that requires employees who are absent from the district to take either personal days or leave without pay.

Please note that the provisions of Act 1028 of 2007 which gives state employees 8 hours of paid leave to attend their children’s school educational activities does NOT apply to public school employees.

  

Legal Reference: A.C.A. § 6-17-211  

Date Adopted:  May 17, 2004

Last Revised:  June 16, 2008

3.11B—CERTIFIED PERSONNEL PROFESSIONAL LEAVE

―Professional Leave‖ is paid leave granted for the purpose of enabling an employee to participate in professional activities (e.g., teacher workshops or serving on professional committees) which improve the instructional program or the employee’s ability to perform his duties.  

The Board of Education authorizes the Superintendent of Schools to grant professional personnel time to engage in educational activities related to the goals and needs of the school district without pay deductions.  A request for an educational leave of absence must be submitted in writing to the Superintendent at least thirty (30) days in advance.  The educational leave must identify programs and degrees to be attained.

In-service leave to attend workshops, seminars, professional meetings, etc. may be granted by the Superintendent.  The teacher should make the request at least one (1) month in advance.  The teacher shall be paid his regular salary for the days absent.  Such leaves will be generally limited to one (1) per year by any teacher.

Educational leave without pay may be granted for a period not to exceed one (1) year.

A person on extended contract, over nine (9) months must make up any time missed from his/her position in school while attending college during the summer terms.

Date Adopted:  May 17, 2004

Last Revised:  June 16, 2008

3.11C— CERTIFIED PERSONNEL VACATION POLICY  

Each employee working on a twelve (12) month, (240 day contract), shall be credited with one (1) day of vacation for each full month of employment completed.  Vacation days must be earned before they can be taken.  The maximum accumulation of vacation days is twelve (12) days per year.

Vacation days are to be taken at a time that is mutually agreeable with the school and the employee.  If a mutually agreeable time cannot be arranged, the needs of the school district, as determined by the superintendent, will receive primary consideration.  The superintendent will have the final authority in the approval of when vacations are taken.

Vacation days may not be carried over from one year to the next.  Vacation days may be taken from the beginning of the contract period through August 12th of the following year.

All school personnel on twelve (12) month contracts working two hundred forty (240) days shall have specified holidays plus twelve (12) days of annual vacation leave.  The specified holidays at this time are:  Independence Day, Labor Day, Thanksgiving (2 days) Day, Christmas Break (as determined by the superintendent), New Years Day, Spring Break (as determined by the superintendent), and Memorial Day (Monday).

Date Adopted:  October 26, 2009

Last Revised:     

3.12—CERTIFIED PERSONNEL RESPONSIBILITIES IN DEALING WITH SEX OFFENDERS ON CAMPUS  

Individuals who have been convicted of certain sex crimes must register with law enforcement as sex offenders. Arkansas law places restrictions on sex offenders with a Level 1 sex offender having the least restrictions (lowest likelihood of committing another sex crime), and Level 4 sex offenders having the most restrictions (highest likelihood of committing another sex crime).  

While Levels 1 and 2 place no restrictions prohibiting the individual’s presence on a school campus, Levels 3 and 4 have specific prohibitions. These are specified in Policy 6.10—SEX OFFENDERS ON CAMPUS (MEGAN’S LAW) and it is the responsibility of district staff to know and understand the policy and, to the extent requested, aid school administrators in enforcing the restrictions placed on campus access to Level 3 and Level 4 sex offenders.

It is the intention of the board of directors that district staff not stigmatize students whose parents or guardians are sex offenders while taking necessary steps to safeguard the school community and comply with state law. Each school’s administration should establish procedures so attention is not drawn to the accommodations necessary for registered sex offender parents or guardians.1  

Cross Reference: 6.10—SEX OFFENDERS ON CAMPUS (MEGAN’S LAW)

Notes:   This policy is similar to Policy 8.8. If you change this policy, review 8.8 at the same time to ensure applicable consistency between the two.

1 For example, if a sex offender parent will arrive for conferences at the same time as other parents, staff should escort additional parents to their student’s classroom, not just the sex offender parent.  All principals, designees, and school employees who will or may have contact with the sex offender parents shall be required to keep confidential both the sex offender status and sex offender accommodations made for a parent.

Legal Reference:   A.C.A. § 12-12-913 (g) (2)

  Arkansas Department of Education Guidelines for ―Megan’s Law‖

  A.C.A. § 5-14-132

Date Adopted:  June 16, 2008

Last Revised:

3.13—CERTIFIED PERSONNEL PUBLIC OFFICE

An employee of the District who is elected to the Arkansas General Assembly or any elective or appointive public office (not legally constitutionally inconsistent with employment by a public school district) shall not be discharged or demoted as a result of such service.

No paid leave will be granted for the employee’s participation in such public office. The employee may receive pay for personal leave or vacation (if applicable), if approved in advance by the Superintendent, during his absence.

Prior to taking leave, and as soon as possible after the need for such leave is discerned by the employee, he must make written request for leave to the Superintendent, setting out, to the degree possible, the dates such leave is needed.

An employee who fraudulently requests sick leave for the purpose of taking leave to serve in public office may be subject to non-renewal or termination of his employment contract.

Legal Reference: A.C.A. § 6-17-115, 116

Date Adopted:  May 17, 2004

Last Revised:

3.14—CERTIFIED PERSONNEL JURY DUTY

Employees are not subject to discharge, loss of sick leave, loss of vacation time or any other penalty due to absence from work for jury duty, upon giving reasonable notice to the District through the employee’s immediate supervisor.

The employee must present the original (not a copy) of the summons to jury duty to his supervisor in order to confirm the reason for the requested absence.

Employees shall receive their regular pay from the district while serving jury duty, and shall reimburse the district from the stipend they receive for jury duty, up to, but not to exceed, the cost of the substitute hired to replace the employee in his/her absence.1

Note: 1 This sentence is totally optional. Please note that public employees are exempt by law from jury duty recovery fees. Since school employees are not state employees, the law does not apply, but you may be asked about it by an employee.

This policy is similar to Policy 8.10.  If you change this policy, review 8.10 at the same time to ensure applicable consistency between the two.

Legal Reference: A.C.A. § 16-31-106

Date Adopted:  May 4, 2004

Last Revised:  April 19, 2010

3.15—CERTIFIED PERSONNEL LEAVE — INJURY FROM ASSAULT

Any teacher who, while in the course of their employment, is injured by an assault or other violent act; while intervening in a student fight; while restraining a student; or while protecting a student from harm, shall be granted a leave of absence for up to one (1) year from the date of the injury, with full pay.

A leave of absence granted under this policy shall not be charged to the teacher’s sick leave.

In order to obtain leave under this policy, the teacher must present documentation of the injury from a physician, with an estimate for time of recovery sufficient to enable the teacher to return to work, and written statements from witnesses (or other documentation as appropriate to a given incident) to prove that the incident occurred in the course of the teacher’s employment.

Legal Reference: A.C.A. § 6-17-1209

Date Adopted:  May 17, 2004

Last Revised:

3.16—CERTIFIED PERSONNEL REIMBURSEMENT FOR PURCHASE OF SUPPLIES

Pre-kindergarten through sixth grade teachers shall be allotted the amount required by law per student enrolled in the teacher’s class to be used for the purchase of classroom supplies and class activities. The amount shall be credited to an account from which the teacher shall be reimbursed for his/her covered purchases to the extent funds are available in the account.

Teachers may purchase supplies and supplementary materials from the district at the district’s cost to take advantage of the school’s bulk buying power. To do so, teachers shall complete and have approved by the principal, a purchase order for supplies which will then be purchased on their behalf by the school and subtracted from their total supply and material allocation. Teachers may also purchase materials and supplies using their own funds and apply for reimbursement by submitting itemized receipts. Receipts totaling less than $20.00 will be held until total receipts are equal to or greater than $50.00.  Supplies and materials purchased with school funds, or for which the teacher is reimbursed with school funds, are school property, and should remain on school property.

Reimbursement requests submitted by (15th) will be processed by (25th).

Unused allotments shall not be carried over from one fiscal year to the next.

Legal Reference: A.C.A. § 6-21-303(b)(1)

Date Adopted:  May 17, 2004

Last Revised:

3.17—INSULT OR ABUSE OF CERTIFIED PERSONNEL

Employees are protected from abusive language and conduct by state law. An employee may report to the police any language which is calculated to:

1. Cause a breach of the peace;

2. Materially and substantially interfere with the operation of the school; and/or

3. Arouse the person to whom the language is addressed to anger, to the extent likely to cause imminent retaliation.

Legal Reference: A.C.A. § 6-17-106  

Date Adopted:  May 17, 2004

Last Revised:

3.18—CERTIFIED PERSONNEL OUTSIDE EMPLOYMENT

An employee of the District may not be employed in any other capacity during regular working hours.

An employee may not accept employment outside of his/her district employment which will interfere, or otherwise be incompatible with the District employment, including normal duties outside the regular work day.  

Legal Reference: A.C.A. § 6-24-106, 107, 111

Date Adopted:  May 17, 2004

Last Revised:  June 16, 2008

3.19—CERTIFIED PERSONNEL EMPLOYMENT

All prospective employees must fill out an application form provided by the District, in addition to any resume provided, all of which information is to be placed in the personnel file of those employed.

If the employee provides false or misleading information, or if he withholds information to the same effect, it may be grounds for dismissal.

The Berryville School District is an equal opportunity employer and shall not discriminate on the grounds of race, color, religion, national origin, sex, age, or disability.

STAFF HIRING:

The Board of Education shall require all teaching personnel employed by the school district to possess those qualifications set forth by the Arkansas State Board of Education and by all applicable accrediting agencies.  It is recognized by the Board that the above qualifications are set up to promote minimum standards.  Therefore, it is the policy of the Board to employ persons who exceed these minimum requirements whenever possible.

It shall be the duty of the Superintendent to recommend to the Board for appointment the applicant who, in his professional judgment, is best qualified for the position.  The Board may then vote to employ or not to employ the applicant or applicants recommended by the Superintendent.  If the Board does not accept the recommendation, the Superintendent shall make another recommendation.

The Superintendent shall prepare or cause to be prepared necessary regulations and procedures for reviewing and evaluating all applicants for vacant positions.

PROFESSIONAL PERSONNEL RECRUITMENT:

The Board of Education recognizes the Superintendent of Schools as the chief executive officer of the Board, and places upon him the responsibility of recommending the appointment of personnel.  Although the Superintendent may assign to others certain duties respecting the appraisal of the qualifications of candidates, the final decision concerning the recommendation of candidates shall be the responsibility of the Superintendent.  All recruitment and hiring practices shall adhere strictly to applicable equal employment opportunity policies and regulations.

PROBATION:

All newly hired certified employees shall be probationary for the maximum period of time as provided by state law, with new hires being probationary for a minimum of one year.

Date Adopted:  May 17, 2004

Last Revised:

3.20—CERTIFIED PERSONNEL REIMBURSEMENT OF TRAVEL EXPENSES

Employees shall be reimbursed for personal and/or travel expenses incurred while performing duties or attending workshops or other employment-related functions, provided that prior written approval for the activity for which the employee seeks reimbursement has been received from the Superintendent, principal (or other immediate supervision with the authority to make school approvals), or the appropriate designee of the Superintendent.

It is the responsibility of the employee to determine the appropriate supervisor from which he must obtain approval.

Reimbursement claims must be made on forms provided by the District and must be supported by appropriate, original receipts. Copies of receipts or other documentation are not acceptable, except in extraordinary circumstances.

Rates for Reimbursement

Mileage allowance shall be reimbursed at the same rate as Arkansas State employees.  Mileage shall be reimbursed on the basis of the shortest, most reasonable, route available.

When not provided as part of the conference or other approved reason for travel, meal expenses shall be reimbursed for activities which last at least three (3) hours and necessitate returning to the work site later than the customary meal time.  Reimbursement for dinner will occur only if the employee stays that night.  For example, if an employee went to a two day conference, dinner for the first day would be reimbursable, dinner for the second day would not be reimbursable.  Meals shall be reimbursed for the actual expense incurred up to a limit of $8.00 for breakfast, $12.00 for lunch, and $15.00 for dinner for a total daily reimbursement of $35.00 per day.    

When travel necessitates overnight lodging, reimbursement shall be equal to or less than the current IRS rate schedule. To the extent practicable, employees shall receive assistance from administrators or their designee in arranging travel plans to help keep expenses to a minimum.

Reimbursement at rates greater than those authorized by the IRS are considered wages.  Reimbursement rates vary and can be determined by going to www.irs.gov and downloading PDF file ―publication 1542.‖ The rate for Hot Springs is $60.00 for a motel and Little Rock $72.00 for a motel.  These rates are applicable only when the conference is housed in another motel.  Rates may vary when you are staying in the same motel where the conference is being held.

Expenses not covered

The district shall not reimburse the following items/categories of expenses.

Alcoholic beverages;

Entertainment expenses – including sports or sporting events or pay per view or game expenses at                          motels;

Replacement due to loss or theft;  

Discretionary expenses for items such as clothing or gifts;

Medical expenses incurred while on route to or from or at the destination of the reason for the travel;

Optional or supplementary insurance obtained by the employee for the period covered during the travel;

Tips

Credit Cards

Only those employees specifically issued credit cards to be used in the performance of their jobs to purchase goods, services, or supplies on behalf of the district shall be allowed to use such cards. Employees who incur reimbursable expenses as defined in this policy are expected to pay for them initially by any means they choose and then submit their request for reimbursement. The district assumes no responsibility for the payment of any personal credit card charges incurred by a district employee.

Airport Associated Expenses

All airline flights shall be by coach/economy class. Receipts are necessary to be reimbursed for airport parking. Upon arrival, the employee is expected to take the less expensive option between a taxi and an airport shuttle service to his hotel or meeting site. Receipts are necessary to be reimbursed. When circumstances dictate that a rental car is necessary and/or the most economical approach to the travel requirements, the least expensive car that will accomplish the job should be rented. A receipt is necessary to be reimbursed. The district shall not reimburse for any kind of rental car supplemental insurance.

The provisions of policy 7.12 – EXPENSE REIMBURSEMENT are incorporated by reference into this policy.

Cross Reference:  Policy 7.12 – EXPENSE REIMBURSEMENT

Date Adopted:  May 17, 2004

Last Revised:

3.21—LICENSED PERSONNEL TOBACCO USE

 

Smoking or use of tobacco or products containing tobacco in any form (including, but not limited to, cigarettes, cigars, chewing tobacco, and snuff) in or on any real property owned or leased by a District school, including school buses owned or leased by the District, or other school vehicles is prohibited.

 

With the exception of recognized tobacco cessation products, this policy’s prohibition includes any tobacco or nicotine delivery system or product. Specifically, the prohibition includes any product that is manufactured, distributed, marketed, or sold as e-cigarettes, e-cigars, e-pips, or under any other name or descriptor.

 

Violation of this policy by employees shall be grounds for disciplinary action up to, and including, dismissal.

 

Legal Reference:              A.C.A. § 6-21-609

 

Date Adopted:

Last Revised: May 30, 2014

3.22—DRESS OF CERTIFIED EMPLOYEES

Employees shall ensure that their dress and appearance are professional and appropriate to their positions.

Date Adopted:  May 17, 2004

Last Revised:

3.23—CERTIFIED PERSONNEL POLITICAL ACTIVITY

Employees are free to engage in political activity outside of work hours and to the extent that it does not affect the performance of their duties or adversely affect important working relationships.

It is specifically forbidden for employees to engage in political activities on the school grounds or during work hours. The following activities are forbidden on school property:

1. Using students for preparation or dissemination of campaign materials;

2. Distributing political materials;

3. Distributing or otherwise seeking signatures on petitions of any kind;

4. Posting political materials; and

5. Discussing political matters with students, in or out of the classroom, in other than circumstances appropriate to the nature of the class.

Date Adopted:  May 17, 2004

Last Revised:

3.24—CERTIFIED PERSONNEL DEBTS

All employees are expected to meet their financial obligations. If an employee writes ―hot‖ checks or has his income garnished, dismissal may result.

An employee will not be dismissed for having been the subject of one (1) garnishment. However, a second or third garnishment may result in dismissal.

At the discretion of the Superintendent, he or his designee may meet with an employee who has received a second garnishment for the purpose of warning the employee that a third garnishment will result in a recommendation of dismissal to the School Board.

At the discretion of the Superintendent, a second garnishment may be used as a basis for a recommended dismissal. The Superintendent may take into consideration other factors in deciding whether to recommend dismissal based on a second garnishment. Those factors may include, but are not limited to, the amount of the debt, the time between the first and the second garnishment, and other financial problems which come to the attention of the District.  

Date Adopted:  May 17, 2004

Last Revised:

3.25—CERTIFIED PERSONNEL GRIEVANCES

The purpose of this policy is to provide an orderly process for employees to resolve, at the lowest possible level, their concerns related to the personnel policies or salary payments of this district.

Definitions

Grievance: a claim or concern related to the interpretation, application, or claimed violation of the personnel policies, including salary schedules, federal or state laws and regulations, or terms or conditions of employment, raised by an individual employee of this school district. Other matters for which the means of resolution are provided or foreclosed by statute or administrative procedures shall not be considered grievances. Specifically, no grievance may be entertained against a supervisor for directing, instructing, reprimanding, or ―writing up‖ an employee under his/her supervision.  A group of employees who have the same grievance may file a group grievance.

Group Grievance: A grievance may be filed as a group grievance if it meets the following criteria: (meeting the criteria does not ensure that the subject of the grievance is, in fact, grievable)

1. More than one individual has interest in the matter; and

2. The group has a well-defined common interest in the facts and/or circumstances of the grievance; and

3. The group has designated an employee spokesperson to meet with administration and/or the board; and

4. All individuals within the group are requesting the same relief.

 

Employee: any person employed under a written contract by this school district.

Immediate Supervisor: the person immediately superior to an employee who directs and supervises the work of that employee.

Working day: Any weekday other than a holiday whether or not the employee under the provisions of their contract is scheduled to work or whether they are currently under contract.  

Process

Level One: An employee who believes that he/she has a grievance shall inform that employee’s immediate supervisor that the employee has a potential grievance and discuss the matter with the supervisor within five working days of the occurrence of the grievance. The supervisor shall offer the employee an opportunity to have a witness or representative who is not a member of the employee’s immediate family present at their conference. (The five-day requirement does not apply to grievances concerning back pay.) If the grievance is not advanced to Level Two within five working days following the conference, the matter will be considered resolved and the employee shall have no further right with respect to said grievance.

If the grievance cannot be resolved by the immediate supervisor, the employee can advance the grievance to Level Two. To do this, the employee must complete the top half of the Level Two Grievance Form within five working days of the discussion with the immediate supervisor, citing the manner in which the specific personnel policy was violated that has given rise to the grievance, and submit the Grievance Form to his/her immediate supervisor. The supervisor will have ten working days to respond to the grievance using the bottom half of the Level Two Grievance Form which he/she will submit to the building principal or, in the event that the employee’s immediate supervisor is the building principal, the superintendent.

 

Level Two (when appeal is to the building principal): Upon receipt of a Level Two Grievance Form, the building principal will have ten working days to schedule a conference with the employee filing the grievance. The principal shall offer the employee an opportunity to have a witness or representative who is not a member of the employee’s immediate family present at their conference. After the conference, the principal will have ten working days in which to deliver a written response to the grievance to the employee. If the grievance is not advanced to Level Three within five working days the matter will be considered resolved and the employee shall have no further right with respect to said grievance.

Level Two (when appeal is to the superintendent): Upon receipt of a Level Two Grievance Form, the superintendent will have ten working days to schedule a conference with the employee filing the grievance. The superintendent shall offer the employee an opportunity to have a witness or representative who is not a member of the employee’s immediate family present at their conference. After the conference, the superintendent will have ten working days in which to deliver a written response to the grievance to the employee.

Level Three: If the proper recipient of the Level Two Grievance was the building principal, and the employee remains unsatisfied with the written response to the grievance, the employee may advance the grievance to the superintendent by submitting a copy of the Level Two Grievance Form and the principal’s reply to the superintendent within five working days of his/her receipt of the principal’s reply. The superintendent will have ten working days to schedule a conference with the employee filing the grievance. The superintendent shall offer the employee an opportunity to have a witness or representative who is not a member of the employee’s immediate family present at their conference.  After the conference, the superintendent will have ten working days in which to deliver a written response to the grievance to the employee.

Appeal to the Board of Directors: An employee who remains unsatisfied by the written response of the superintendent may appeal the superintendent’s decision to the Board of Education within five working days of his/her receipt of the Superintendent’s written response by submitting a written request for a board hearing to the superintendent. If the grievance is not appealed to the Board of Directors within five working days of his/her receipt of the superintendent’s response, the matter will be considered resolved and the employee shall have no further right with respect to said grievance.  

The school board will address the grievance at the next regular meeting of the school board, unless the employee agrees in writing to an alternate date for the hearing. After reviewing the Level Two Grievance Form and the superintendent’s reply, the board will decide if the grievance, on its face, is grievable under district policy. If the grievance is presented as a ―group grievance,‖ the Board shall first determine if the composition of the group meets the definition of a ―group grievance.‖ If the Board determines that it is a group grievance, the Board shall then determine whether the matter raised is grievable. If the Board rules the composition of the group does not meet the definition of a group grievance, or the grievance, whether group or individual, is not grievable, the matter shall be considered closed. (Individuals within the disallowed group may choose to subsequently refile their grievance as an individual grievance beginning with Level One of the process.) If the Board rules the grievance to be grievable, they shall immediately commence a hearing on the grievance. All parties have the right to representation by a person of their own choosing who is not a member of the employee’s immediate family at the appeal hearing before the Board of Directors. The employee shall have no less than 90 minutes to present his/her grievance and both parties shall have the opportunity to present and question witnesses. The hearing shall be open to the public unless the employee requests a private hearing. If the hearing is open, the parent or guardian of any student under the age of eighteen years who gives testimony may elect to have the student’s testimony given in closed session. At the conclusion of the hearing, if the hearing was closed, the Board of Directors may excuse all parties except board members and deliberate, by themselves, on the hearing. At the conclusion of an open hearing, board deliberations shall also be in open session unless the board is deliberating the employment, appointment, promotion, demotion, disciplining, or resignation of the employee. A decision on the grievance shall be announced no later than the next regular board meeting.

Records

Records related to grievances will be filed separately and will not be kept in, or made part of, the personnel file of any employee.

Reprisals

No reprisals of any kind will be taken or tolerated against any employee because he/she has filed or advanced a grievance under this policy.

Legal Reference: ACA  § 6-17-208

Date Adopted:  May 17, 2004

Last Revised:

3.25F—CERTIFIED PERSONNEL LEVEL TWO GRIEVANCE FORM

Name: _______________________________________________

Date submitted to supervisor: ____________

Personnel Policy grievance is based upon:

__________________________________________________________________________

Grievance (be specific):  

What would resolve your grievance? _______________________________________________________

Supervisor’s Response

Date submitted to recipient:  

Date Adopted:  May 17, 2004

Last Revised:

3.26—CERTIFIED PERSONNEL SEXUAL HARASSMENT

 

The Berryville School District is committed to having an academic and work environment in which all students and employees are treated with respect and dignity. Student achievement and amicable working relationships are best attained in an atmosphere of equal educational and employment opportunity that is free of discrimination. Sexual harassment is a form of discrimination that undermines the integrity of the educational environment and will not be tolerated.  

 

Believing that prevention is the best policy, the district will periodically inform students and employees about the nature of sexual harassment, the procedures for registering a complaint, and the possible redress that is available. The information will stress that the district does not tolerate sexual harassment and that students and employees can report inappropriate behavior of a sexual nature without fear of adverse consequences.  

 

It shall be a violation of this policy for any student or employee to be subjected to, or to subject another person to, sexual harassment as defined in this policy. Any employee found, after an investigation, to have engaged in sexual harassment will be subject to disciplinary action up to, and including, termination.

 

Sexual harassment refers to unwelcome sexual advances, requests for sexual favors, or other personally offensive verbal, visual, or physical conduct of a sexual nature made by someone under any of the following conditions:

 

1. Submission to the conduct is made, either explicitly or implicitly, a term or condition of an individual’s education or employment;

2. Submission to, or rejection of, such conduct by an individual is used as the basis for academic or employment decisions affecting that individual; and/or

3. Such conduct has the purpose or effect of substantially interfering with an individual’s academic or work performance or creates an intimidating, hostile, or offensive academic or work environment.

 

The terms ―intimidating,‖ ―hostile,‖ and ―offensive‖ include conduct of a sexual nature which has the effect of humiliation or embarrassment and is sufficiently severe, persistent, or pervasive that it limits the student’s or employee’s ability to participate in, or benefit from, an educational program or activity or their employment environment.

 

Within the educational or work environment, sexual harassment is prohibited between any of the following: students; employees and students; non-employees and students; employees; employees and non-employees.

 

Actionable sexual harassment is generally established when an individual is exposed to a pattern of objectionable behaviors or when a single, serious act is committed. What is, or is not, sexual harassment will depend upon all of the surrounding circumstances. Depending upon such circumstances, examples of sexual harassment include, but are not are not limited

to: unwelcome touching; crude jokes or pictures; discussions of sexual experiences; pressure for sexual activity; intimidation by words, actions, insults, or name calling; teasing related to sexual characteristics or the belief or perception that an individual is not conforming to expected gender roles or conduct or is homosexual, regardless of whether or not the individual self-identifies as homosexual; and spreading rumors related to a person’s alleged sexual activities.

 

Employees who believe they have been subjected to sexual harassment are encouraged to file a complaint by contacting their immediate supervisor, administrator, or Title IX coordinator who will assist them in the complaint process. Under no circumstances shall an employee be required to first report allegations of sexual harassment to a school contact person if that person is the individual who is accused of the harassment. To the extent possible, complaints will be treated in a confidential manner. Limited disclosure may be necessary in order to complete a thorough investigation.

 

Employees who file a complaint of sexual harassment will not be subject to retaliation or reprisal in any form.

 

Employees who knowingly fabricate allegations of sexual harassment shall be subject to disciplinary action up to and including termination.

 

Individuals who withhold information, purposely provide inaccurate facts, or otherwise hinder an investigation of sexual harassment shall be subject to disciplinary action up to and including termination.

 

 

Legal References: Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972, 20 USC 1681, et seq.

   Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, 42 USC 2000-e, et seq.  

   A.C.A.  § 6-15-1005 (b) (1)

 

 

Date Adopted:  May 17, 2004

Last Revised:    July 1, 2011 

3.27—CERTIFIED PERSONNEL SUPERVISION OF STUDENTS

 

QUALIFICATIONS

 

The Board of Education requires that each teacher hold not less than a bachelor's degree from a regionally accredited college or university to be eligible for employment.  Each teacher shall hold a current and valid Arkansas teacher's certificate issued by the State Board of Education demonstrating proficiency in meeting all requirements necessary to obtain such a certificate.  Other professional personnel, including supervisory, administrative, and non-certified school employees, shall be required to meet those qualifications necessary for the position assigned as may be determined by the Board.

 

DUTIES

 

As part of and in addition to their normal work assignment, teachers, as well as other employees, shall perform duties as necessary to maintain the safety and welfare of students.  They shall at all times perform these duties in a reasonably prudent manner.  Teachers may also be required to attend or conduct such other functions or activities of their respective school as deemed appropriate by the principal within the guidelines of their job description and their job responsibilities.  

 

 

 

Date Adopted:  May 17, 2004

Last Revised: 

3.28—CERTIFIED PERSONNEL COMPUTER USE POLICY    

 

The Berryville School District provides computers and/or computer Internet access for many employees, to assist employees in performing work related tasks. Employees are advised that they enjoy no expectation of privacy in any aspect of their computer use, including email, and that under Arkansas law, both email and computer use records maintained by the district are subject to disclosure under the Freedom of Information Act. Consequently, no employee or student-related reprimands or other disciplinary communications should be made through email. 

 

Passwords or security procedures are to be used as assigned, and confidentiality of student records is to be maintained at all times. Employees must not disable or bypass security procedures, compromise, attempt to compromise, or defeat the district’s technology network security, alter data without authorization, disclose passwords to other staff members or students, or grant students access to any computer not designated for student use. It is the policy of this school district to equip each computer with Internet filtering software designed to prevent users from accessing material that is harmful to minors. The designated District Technology Administrator or designee may authorize the disabling of the filter to enable access by an adult for a bona fide research or other lawful purpose. 

 

Employees who misuse district-owned computers in any way, including excessive personal use, using computers for personal use during instructional time, using computers to violate any other policy, knowingly or negligently allowing unauthorized access, or using the computers to access or create sexually explicit or pornographic text or graphics, will face disciplinary action, up to and including termination or non-renewal of the employment contract.

 

 

 

 

Note:  This policy is similar to Policy 8.22. If you change this policy, review 8.22 at the same time to ensure applicable consistency between the two.

 

Legal References: Children’s Internet Protection Act; PL 106-554 

   20 USC 6777

   47 USC 254(h)

A.C.A. § 6-21-107  

   A.C.A. § 6-21-111

 

Date Adopted:  May 17, 2004

Last Revised:    October 26, 2009

3.28F—CERTIFIED PERSONNEL EMPLOYEE INTERNET USE AGREEMENT

 

Name (Please Print) _____________________________________________________________

 

School________________________________________________________Date____________

 

The Berryville School District agrees to allow the employee identified above (―Employee‖) to use the district’s technology to access the Internet under the following terms and conditions:

 

1. Conditional Privilege: The Employee’s use of the district’s access to the Internet is a privilege conditioned on the Employee’s abiding by this agreement.  

 

2. Acceptable Use: The Employee agrees that in using the District’s Internet access he/she will obey all federal and state laws and regulations. Internet access is provided as an aid to employees to enable them to better perform their job responsibilities. Under no circumstances shall an Employee’s use of the District’s Internet access interfere with, or detract from, the performance of his/her job-related duties.

 

3. Penalties for Improper Use: If the Employee violates this agreement and misuses the Internet, the Employee shall be subject to disciplinary action up to and including termination.  

 

4. ―Misuse of the District’s access to the Internet‖ includes, but is not limited to, the following:

a. using the Internet for any activities deemed lewd, obscene, vulgar, or pornographic as defined by prevailing community standards;

b. using abusive or profane language in private messages on the system; or using the system to harass, insult, or verbally attack others;

c. posting anonymous messages on the system;

d. using encryption software;

e. wasteful use of limited resources provided by the school including paper;

f. causing congestion of the network through lengthy downloads of files;

g. vandalizing data of another user;

h. obtaining or sending information which could be used to make destructive devices such as guns, weapons, bombs, explosives, or fireworks;

i. gaining or attempting to gain unauthorized access to resources or files;

j. identifying oneself with another person’s name or password or using an account or password of another user without proper authorization;

k. using the network for financial or commercial gain without district permission;

l. theft or vandalism of data, equipment, or intellectual property;

m. invading the privacy of individuals;

n. using the Internet for any illegal activity, including computer hacking and copyright or intellectual property law violations;

o. introducing a virus to, or otherwise improperly tampering with, the system;

p. degrading or disrupting equipment or system performance;

q. creating a web page or associating a web page with the school or school district without proper authorization;

r. attempting to gain access or gaining access to student records, grades, or files of students not under their jurisdiction;

s. providing access to the District’s Internet Access to unauthorized individuals; or

t. taking part in any activity related to Internet use which creates a clear and present danger of the substantial disruption of the orderly operation of the district or any of its schools;

u. making unauthorized copies of computer software;

v. personal use of computers during instructional time; or

w. Installing software on district computers without prior approval of technology director or his/her designee.

 

5. Liability for debts: Staff shall be liable for any and all costs (debts) incurred through their use of the District’s computers or the Internet including penalties for copyright violations.

 

6. No Expectation of Privacy: The Employee signing below agrees that in using the Internet through the District’s access, he/she waives any right to privacy the Employee may have for such use. The Employee agrees that the district may monitor the Employee’s use of the District’s Internet Access and may also examine all system activities the Employee participates in, including but not limited to e-mail, voice, and video transmissions, to ensure proper use of the system.  

 

7. Signature: The Employee, who has signed below, has read this agreement and agrees to be bound by its terms and conditions.

 

 

Employee’s Signature: ___________________________________Date _____________

 

 

 

Date Adopted:  July 1, 2011

Last Revised:

3.29—CERTIFIED PERSONNEL SCHOOL CALENDAR

 

The Superintendent and Personnel Policy Committee shall present to the Board, for its approval, the calendar for the succeeding year at a regular Board meeting. The Superintendent, in developing the calendar, shall accept and consider recommendations from any staff member or group wishing to make calendar proposals.  

 

The Berryville School District shall operate by the following calendar.

 

The calendar can be found at the school website -  bobcat.oursc.k12.ar.us

 

 

 

 

Legal Reference: A.C.A. § 6-17-201

 

 

 

 

Date Adopted:  May 17, 2004

Last Revised: 

3.30—PARENT-TEACHER COMMUNICATION

 

The district recognizes the importance of communication between teachers and parents/legal guardians.  To help promote positive communication, parent/teacher conferences shall be held one each semester.  Parent-teacher conferences are encouraged and may be requested by parents or guardians when they feel they need to discuss their child’s progress with his/her teacher.

 

Teachers are required to communicate during the school year with the parent(s) or legal guardians(s) of each of their students to discuss their academic progress.  More frequent communication is required with the parent(s) or legal guardian(s) of students who are performing below grade level.

 

All parent/teacher conferences shall be scheduled at a time and place to best accommodate those participating in the conference.  Each teacher shall document the participation or non-participation of parent(s)/legal guardian(s) for each scheduled conference.

 

If a student is to be retained at any grade level, notice of, and the reasons for retention shall be communicated promptly in a personal conference.

 

 

 

Legal Reference State Board of Education Standards of Accreditation 12.04.1, 12,04.2, and 12.04.3

   A.C.A. § 6-15-1701(b)(3)(C)

 

 

 

Date Adopted:  May 17, 2004

Last Revised:  June 30, 2005

3.31—DRUG FREE WORKPLACE - CERTIFIED PERSONNEL

 

The conduct of district staff plays a vital role in the social and behavioral development of our students. It is equally important that the staff have a safe, healthful, and professional environment in which to work. To help promote both interests, the district shall have a drug free workplace. It is, therefore, the district’s policy that district employees are prohibited from the unlawful manufacture, distribution, dispensation, possession, or use of controlled substances, illegal drugs, inhalants, alcohol, as well as inappropriate or illegal use of prescription drugs. Such actions are prohibited both while at work or in the performance of official duties while off district property; violations of this policy will subject the employee to discipline, up to and including termination.

 

To help promote a drug free workplace, the district shall establish a drug-free awareness program to inform employees about the dangers of drug abuse in the workplace, the district's policy of maintaining a drug-free workplace, any available drug counseling, rehabilitation, and employee assistance abuse programs, and the penalties that may be imposed upon employees for drug abuse violations. 

 

Should any employee be found to have been under the influence of, or in illegal possession of, any illegal drug or controlled substance, whether or not engaged in any school or school-related activity, and the behavior of the employee, if under the influence, is such that it is inappropriate for a school employee in the opinion of the superintendent, the employee may be subject to discipline, up to and including termination. This policy also applies to those employees who are under the influence of alcohol while on campus or at school-sponsored functions, including athletic events.

 

An employee living on campus or on school owned property is permitted to possess alcohol in his/her residence. The employee is bound by the restrictions stated in this policy while at work or performing his/her official duties.

 

Possession, use or distribution of drug paraphernalia by any employee, whether or not engaged in school or school-related activities, may subject the employee to discipline, up to and including termination. Possession in one’s vehicle or in an area subject to the employee’s control will be considered to be possession as though the substance were on the employee’s person.

 

It shall not be necessary for an employee to test at a level demonstrating intoxication by any substance in order to be subject to the terms of this policy. Any physical manifestation of being under the influence of a substance may subject an employee to the terms of this policy. Those physical manifestations include, but are not limited to: unsteadiness; slurred speech; dilated or constricted pupils; incoherent and/or irrational speech; or the presence of an odor associated with a prohibited substance on one’s breath or clothing.

 

Should an employee desire to provide the District with the results of a blood, breath or urine analysis, such results will be taken into account by the District only if the sample is provided within a time range that could provide meaningful results and only by a testing agency chosen or approved by the District. The District shall not request that the employee be tested, and the expense for such voluntary testing shall be borne by the employee.

 

Any employee who is charged with a violation of any state or federal law relating to the possession, use or distribution of illegal drugs, other controlled substances or alcohol, or of drug paraphernalia, must notify his immediate supervisor within five (5) week days (i.e., Monday through Friday, inclusive, excluding holidays) of being so charged.  The supervisor who is notified of such a charge shall notify the Superintendent immediately.

 

If the supervisor is not available to the employee, the employee shall notify the Superintendent within the five (5) day period.

 

Any employee so charged is subject to discipline, up to and including termination.  However, the failure of an employee to notify his supervisor or the Superintendent of having been so charged shall result in that employee being recommended for termination by the Superintendent.

 

Any employee convicted of any criminal drug statute violation for an offense that occurred while at work or in the performance of official duties while off district property shall report the conviction within 5 calendar days to the superintendent. Within 10 days of receiving such notification, whether from the employee or any other source, the district shall notify federal granting agencies from which it receives funds of the conviction. Compliance with these requirements and prohibitions is mandatory and is a condition of employment.

 

Any employee convicted of any state or federal law relating to the possession, use or distribution of illegal drugs, other controlled substances, or of drug paraphernalia, shall be recommended for termination.

 

Any employee who must take prescription medication at the direction of the employee’s physician, and who is impaired by the prescription medication such that he cannot properly perform his duties shall not report for duty. Any employee who reports for duty and is so impaired, as determined by his supervisor, will be sent home. The employee shall be given sick leave, if owed any. The District or employee will provide transportation for the employee, and the employee may not leave campus while operating any vehicle. It is the responsibility of the employee to contact his physician in order to adjust the medication, if possible, so that the employee may return to his job unimpaired. Should the employee attempt to return to work while impaired by prescription medications, for which the employee has a prescription, he will, again, be sent home and given sick leave, if owed any.  Should the employee attempt to return to work while impaired by prescription medication a third time the employee may be subject to discipline, up to and including a recommendation of termination.

 

Any employee who possesses, uses, distributes or is under the influence of a prescription medication obtained by a means other than his own current prescription shall be treated as though he was in possession, possession with intent to deliver, or under the influence, etc. of an illegal substance. An illegal drug or other substance is one which is (a) not legally obtainable; or (b) one which is legally obtainable, but which has been obtained illegally. The District may require an employee to provide proof from his physician and/or pharmacist that the employee is lawfully able to receive such medication. Failure to provide such proof, to the satisfaction of the Superintendent, may result in discipline, up to and including a recommendation of termination.

Notes:  This policy addresses the requirement for Safe and Drug Free Schools which is required for your district to be eligible to receive any federal grants. It is required that all employees receive a copy of the policy and be advised of the contents and requirements of the policy. In addition to publishing a policy statement, the statutes require employers to establish a drug-free awareness program to educate employees about the dangers of drug abuse as well as about the specifics of their policy. The statute does not specify a particular format for the awareness program, although it does state that the education effort must be ongoing and not just a one-time event. For assistance in constructing a drug awareness program the Department of Labor has the following web site: http://www.dol.gov/asp/programs/drugs/workingpartners/materials/materials.asp.  

 

This policy is similar to Policy 8.28. If you change this policy, review 8.28 at the same time to ensure consistency between the two.

 

 

 

Legal References: 41 USC § 702, 703, and 706

 

 

 

 

Date Adopted:  June 19, 2006

Last Revised:   October 26, 2009

3.31F—DRUG FREE WORKPLACE POLICY ACKNOWLEDGEMENT                                  

 (PENDING)  

3.32—LICENSED PERSONNEL FAMILY MEDICAL LEAVE *

 

The Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA) leave offers job protection for what might otherwise be considered excessive absences. Employees need to carefully comply with this policy to ensure they do not lose FMLA protection due to inaction or failure to provide the District with needed information. The FMLA provides up to 12 work weeks (or in some cases 26 weeks) of job-protected leave to eligible employees with absences that qualify under the FMLA. While an employee can request FMLA leave and has a duty to inform the District as provided in this policy of foreseeable absences that may qualify for FMLA leave, it is the District’s ultimate responsibility to identify qualifying absences as FMLA or non-FMLA. FMLA leave is unpaid, except to the extent that paid leave applies to any given absence as governed by the FMLA and this policy.  

 

SECTION ONE 

 

Definitions:

 

Eligible Employee: is an employee who has been employed by the District for at least twelve (12) months and for 1250 hours of service during the twelve (12) month period immediately preceding the commencement of the leave.1 

 

FMLA: is the Family and Medical Leave Act

 

Health Care Provider: is a doctor of medicine or osteopathy who is authorized to practice medicine or surgery (as appropriate) by the state in which the doctor practices. It also includes any other person determined by the U.S. Secretary of Labor to be capable of providing health care services.  

 

Instructional Employee: is an employee whose principal function is to teach and instruct students in a class, a small group, or an individual setting and includes athletic coaches, driving instructors, preschool teachers, and special education assistants such as signers for the hearing impaired. The term does not include, and the special rules related to the taking of leave near the end of a semester do not apply to, teacher assistants or aides who do not have as their principal job actual teaching or instructing, nor does it include administrators, counselors, librarians, psychologists, or curriculum specialists.  

 

Intermittent leave: is FMLA leave taken in separate blocks of time due to a single qualifying reason. A reduced leave schedule is a leave schedule that reduces an employee’s usual number of working hours per workweek, or hours per workday. A reduced leave schedule is a change in the employee’s schedule for a period of time, normally from full-time to part-time.  

 

Next of Kin: used in respect to an individual, means the nearest blood relative of that individual.  

 

Parent: is the biological parent of an employee or an individual who stood in loco parentis to an employee when the employee was a son or a daughter. This term does not include parents ―in-law.‖  

 

Serious Health Condition: is an injury, illness, impairment, or physical or mental condition that involves inpatient care in a hospital, hospice, or residential medical facility or continuing treatment by a health care provider.   

 

Son or daughter, for numbers 1, 2, or 3 below: is a biological, adopted, or foster child, a stepchild, a legal ward, or a child of a person standing in loco parentis, who is either under age 18, or age 18 or older and ―incapable of self-care because of a mental or physical disability‖ at the time that FMLA leave is to commence.2 

 

Year: the twelve (12) month period of eligibility shall begin on July first of each school-year. 3   

 

Policy

 

The provisions of this policy are intended to be in line with the provisions of the FMLA. If any conflict(s) exist, the Family and Medical Leave Act of 1993 as amended shall govern.

 

Leave Eligibility 

 

The District will grant up to twelve (12) weeks of leave in a year in accordance with the FMLA, as amended, to its eligible employees for one or more of the following reasons:

 

1. Because of the birth of a son or daughter of the employee and in order to care for such son or daughter;

2. Because of the placement of a son or daughter with the employee for adoption or foster care;  

 

3. To care for the spouse, son, daughter, or parent, of the employee, if such spouse, son, daughter, or parent has a serious health condition; and

 

4. Because of a serious health condition that makes the employee unable to perform the functions of the position of such employee.  

 

5. Because of any qualifying exigency arising out of the fact that the spouse, son, daughter, or parent of the employee is on covered active duty (or has been notified of an impending call or order to covered active duty) in the Armed Forces. (See Section Two)

 

6. To care for a spouse, child, parent or next of kin who is a covered servicemember with a serious illness or injury. (See Section Two)

The entitlement to leave for reasons 1 and 2 listed above shall expire at the end of the twelve (12) month period beginning on the date of such birth or placement.  

 

A husband and wife who are both eligible employees employed by the District may not take more than a combined total of 12 weeks of FMLA leave for reasons 1, 2, 3 and 5.  

 

Provisions Applicable to both Sections One and Two

 

District Notice to Employees  

The District shall post, in conspicuous places in each school within the District where notices to employees and applicants for employment are customarily posted, a notice explaining the FMLA’s provisions and providing information about the procedure for filing complaints with the Department of Labor.4 

 

Designation Notice to Employee 

 

When an employee requests FMLA leave or the District determines that an employee’s absence may be covered under the FMLA, the District shall provide written notice within five (5) business days (absent extenuating circumstances) to the employee of the District’s determination of his/her eligibility for FMLA leave. 5 If the employee is eligible, the District may request additional information from the employee and/or certification from a health care provider to help make the applicability6 determination. After receiving sufficient information as requested, the District shall provide a written notice within five (5) business days (absent extenuating circumstances) to the employee of whether the leave qualifies as FMLA leave and will be so designated.7

 

If the circumstances for the leave don’t change, the District is only required to notify the employee once of the determination regarding the designation of FMLA leave within any applicable twelve (12) month period. 

 

Concurrent Leave Under the FMLA 

 

All FMLA leave is unpaid unless substituted by applicable accrued leave. The District requires employees to substitute any applicable accrued leave (in the order of sick, personal, or vacation leave as may be applicable) for any period of FMLA leave.6 

 

Health Insurance Coverage 

 

The District shall maintain coverage under any group health plan for the duration of FMLA leave the employee takes at the level and under the conditions coverage would have been provided if the employee had continued in active employment with the District. Additionally, if the District makes a change to its health insurance benefits or plans that apply to other employees, the employee on FMLA leave must be afforded the opportunity to access additional benefits and/or the same responsibility for changes to premiums. Any changes made to a group health plan which apply to other District employees, must also apply to the employee on FMLA leave. The District will notify the employee on FMLA leave of any opportunities to change plans or benefits. The employee remains responsible for any portion of premium payments customarily paid by the employee. When on unpaid FMLA leave, it is the employee’s responsibility to submit his/her portion of the cost of the group health plan coverage to the district’s business office on or before it would be made by payroll deduction.8  

 

The District has the right to pay an employee’s unpaid insurance premiums during the employee’s unpaid FMLA leave to maintain the employee’s coverage during his/her leave. The District may recover the employee's share of any premium payments missed by the employee for any FMLA leave period during which the District maintains health coverage for the employee by paying the his/her share. Such recovery shall be made by offsetting the employee’s debt through payroll deductions or by other means against any monies owed the employee by the District.  

An employee who chooses to not continue group health plan coverage while on FMLA leave, is entitled to be reinstated on the same terms as prior to taking the leave, including family or dependent coverages, without any qualifying period, physical examination, exclusion of pre-existing conditions, etc.9 

 

If an employee gives unequivocal notice of intent not to return to work, or if the employment relationship would have terminated if the employee had not taken FMLA leave, the District’s obligation to maintain health benefits ceases.  

 

If the employee fails to return from leave after the period of leave to which the employee was entitled has expired, the District may recover the premiums it paid to maintain health care coverage unless:  

 

a. The employee fails to return to work due to the continuation, reoccurrence, or onset of a serious health condition that entitles the employee to leave under reasons 3 or 4 listed above; and/or

b. Other circumstances exist beyond the employee’s control.  

Circumstances under ―a‖ listed above shall be certified by a licensed, practicing health care provider verifying the employee’s inability to return to work.

 

Reporting Requirements During Leave 

 

Unless circumstances exist beyond the employee’s control, the employee shall inform the district every two weeks10 during FMLA leave of their current status and intent to return to work.  

 

Return to Previous Position  

 

An employee returning from FMLA leave is entitled to be returned to the same position the employee held when leave commenced, or to an equivalent position with equivalent benefits, pay, and other terms and conditions of employment. An equivalent position must involve the same or substantially similar duties and responsibilities, which must entail substantially equivalent skill, effort, and authority. Specifically, upon returning from FMLA leave, a teacher may be assigned to another position that is not necessarily the same as the teacher’s former job assignment. The employee may not be restored to a position requiring additional licensure or certification.  

 

The employee’s right to return to work and/or to the same or an equivalent position does not supersede any actions taken by the District, such as conducting a RIF, which the employee would have been subject to had the employee not been on FMLA leave at the time of the District’s actions.

 

Provisions Applicable to Section One

 

Employee Notice to District

 

Foreseeable Leave:  

When the need for leave is foreseeable for reasons 1 through 4 listed above, the employee shall provide the District with not less than 30 days' notice, before the date the leave is to begin, of the employee's intention to take leave for the specified reason. An eligible employee who has no reasonable excuse for his/her failure to provide the District with timely advance notice of the need for FMLA leave may delay the FMLA coverage of such leave until 30 days after the date the employee provides notice.

 

If there is a lack of knowledge of approximately when the leave will be required to begin, a change in circumstances, or an emergency, notice must be given as soon as practicable. As soon as practicable means as soon as both possible and practical, taking into account all of the facts and circumstances in the individual case.

 

When the need for leave is for reasons 3 or 4 listed above, the eligible employee shall make a reasonable effort to schedule the treatment so as not to disrupt unduly the operations of the District subject to the approval of the health care provider of the spouse, son, daughter, or parent of the employee.  

 

If the need for FMLA leave is foreseeable less than 30 days in advance, the employee shall notify the District as soon as practicable. If the employee fails to notify as soon as practicable, the District may delay granting FMLA leave for the number of days in advance that the employee should have provided notice and when the employee actually gave notice.  

 

Unforeseeable Leave:  

 

When the approximate timing of the need for leave is not foreseeable, an employee shall provide the District notice of the need for leave as soon as practicable given the facts and circumstances of the particular case.  

 

Ordinarily, the employee shall notify the District within two (2) working days of learning of the need for leave, except in extraordinary circumstances where such notice is not feasible. Notice may be provided in person, by telephone, telegraph, fax, or other electronic means. If the eligible employee fails to notify the District as required, unless the failure to comply is justified by unusual circumstances, the FMLA leave may be delayed or denied.

 

Medical Certification  

 

Second and Third Opinions: In any case where the District has reason to doubt the validity of the initial certification provided, the District may require, at its expense, the employee to obtain the opinion of a second health care provider designated or approved by the employer. If the second opinion differs from the first, the District may require, at its expense, the employee to obtain a third opinion from a health care provider agreed upon by both the District and the employee. The opinion of the third health care provider shall be considered final and be binding upon both the District and the employee.  

 

Recertification: The District may request, either orally or in writing, the employee obtain a recertification in connection with the employee’s absence, at the employee’s expense, no more often than every thirty (30) days unless one or more of the following circumstances apply;  

 

H. The original certification is for a period greater than 30 days. In this situation, the District may require a recertification after the time of the original certification expires, but in any case, the District may require a recertification every six (6) months.

I. The employee requests an extension of leave;

J. Circumstances described by the previous certification have changed significantly; and/or

K. The district receives information that casts doubt upon the continuing validity of the certification.

The employee must provide the recertification in fifteen (15) calendar days after the District’s request.  

 

No second or third opinion on recertification may be required.

 

The District may deny FMLA leave if an eligible employee fails to provide requested certification.  

 

Substitution of Paid Leave 

 

When an employee’s leave has been designated as FMLA leave for reasons 1 (as applicable), 2, 3, or 4 above, the District requires employees to substitute accrued sick, vacation, or personal leave for the period of FMLA leave. 11 

 

To the extent the employee has accrued paid vacation or personal leave, any leave taken that qualifies for FMLA leave for reasons 1 or 2 above shall be paid leave and charged against the employee’s accrued leave.  

 

Workers Compensation: FMLA leave may run concurrently with a workers’ compensation absence when the injury is one that meets the criteria for a serious health condition. To the extent that workers compensation benefits and FMLA leave run concurrently, the employee will be charged for any paid leave accrued by the employee at the rate necessary to bring the total amount of combined income up to 100% of usual contracted daily rate of pay. If the health care provider treating the employee for the workers compensation injury certifies the employee is able to return to a ―light duty job,‖ but is unable to return to the employee’s same or equivalent job, the employee may decline the District’s offer of a ―light duty job.‖ As a result, the employee may lose his/her workers’ compensation payments, but for the duration of the employee’s FMLA leave, the employee will be paid for the leave to the extent that the employee has accrued applicable leave.

 

Return to Work12 

 

If the District’s written designation determination that the eligible employee’s leave qualified as FMLA leave under reason 4 above stated that the employee would have to provide a ―fitness-for-duty‖ certification from a health care provider for the employee to resume work, the employee must provide such certification prior to returning to work. The employee’s failure to do so voids the District’s obligation to reinstate the employee under the FMLA and the employee shall be terminated.  

 

If the District’s written designation determination that the eligible employee’s leave qualified as FMLA leave under reason 4 above stated that the employee would have to provide a ―fitness-for-duty‖ certification from a health care provider for the employee to resume work and the designation determination listed the employee’s essential job functions, the employee must provide certification that the employee is able to perform those functions prior to returning to work. The employee’s failure to do so or his/her inability to perform his/her job’s essential functions voids the District’s obligation to reinstate the employee under the FMLA and the employee shall be terminated.

 

Failure to Return to Work:  

 

In the event that an employee is unable or fails to return to work within FMLA's leave timelines, the superintendent will make a determination at that time regarding the documented need for a severance of the employee’s contract due to the inability of the employee to fulfill the responsibilities and requirements of their contract.

Intermittent or Reduced Schedule Leave

 

To the extent practicable, employees requesting intermittent or reduced schedule leave shall provide the District with not less than 30 days' notice, before the date the leave is to begin, of the employee's intention to take leave.

 

Eligible employees may only take intermittent or reduced schedule leave for reasons 1 and 2 listed above if the District agrees to permit such leave upon request of the employee. If the District agrees to permit an employee to take intermittent or reduced schedule leave for such reasons, the agreement shall be consistent with this policy’s requirements governing intermittent or reduced schedule leave. The employee may be transferred temporarily during the period of scheduled intermittent or reduced leave to an alternative position for which the employee is qualified and which better accommodates recurring periods of leave than does the employee's regular position. The alternative position shall have equivalent pay and benefits but does not have to have equivalent duties.  

 

Eligible employees may take intermittent or reduced schedule FMLA leave due to reasons 3 or 4 listed above when the medical need is best accommodated by such a schedule. The eligible employee shall make a reasonable effort to schedule the treatment so as not to disrupt unduly the operations of the employer, subject to the approval of the health care provider.  

 

When granting leave on an intermittent or reduced schedule for reasons 3 or 4 above that is foreseeable based on planned medical treatment, the District may temporarily transfer non-instructional, eligible employees for the period of scheduled intermittent or reduced leave to an alternative position for which the employee is qualified and which better accommodates recurring periods of leave than does the employee's regular position. The alternative position shall have equivalent pay and benefits but does not have to have equivalent duties. When the employee is able to return to full-time work, the employee shall be placed in the same or equivalent job as he/she had when the leave began. The employee will not be required to take more FMLA leave than necessary to address the circumstances requiring the need for the leave.  

 

If an eligible employee who meets the definition of an instructional employee requests intermittent or reduced schedule leave for reasons 3 or 4 above that is foreseeable based on planned medical treatment and the employee would be on leave for greater than 20 percent of the total number of working days in the period during which the leave would extend, the district may require the employee to elect either

 

a. to take medical leave for periods of a particular duration, not to exceed the duration of the planned medical treatment; or  

b. to transfer temporarily to an available alternative position offered by the employer for which the employee is qualified and that has equivalent pay and benefits and better accommodates recurring periods of leave than the regular employment position of the employee.  

If the employee chooses to transfer to an alternative position it shall have equivalent pay and benefits but does not have to have equivalent duties. When the employee is able to return to full-time work, the employee shall be placed in the same or equivalent job as he/she had when the leave began. The employee will not be required to take more FMLA leave than necessary to address the circumstances requiring the need for the leave.  

 

An eligible instructional employee who needs intermittent leave or leave on a reduced leave schedule for reasons 3 or 4 above may not be transferred to an alternative position during the period of the employee's intermittent or reduced leave schedule if, based on the foreseeable planned medical treatment, the employee would be on leave for 20 percent or less of the total number of working days over the period the leave would extend.  

 

Leave taken by eligible instructional employees near the end of the semester

 

In any of the following scenarios, if the District chooses to require the eligible, instructional employee to stay on leave until the end of the semester, only the portion of the leave until the employee is ready and able to return to work shall be charged against the employee’s FMLA leave entitlement. The required non-FMLA leave will not be considered excessive absenteeism.  

 

Leave more than 5 weeks prior to end of the semester 

 

If the eligible, instructional employee begins leave, due to reasons 1 through 4 listed above, more than 5 weeks prior to the end of the academic term, the District may require the employee to continue taking leave until the end of the semester, if

(A) the leave is of at least 3 weeks duration; and  

(B) the return to employment would occur during the 3-week period before the end of the semester.

 

Leave less than 5 weeks prior to end of the semester 

 

If the eligible, instructional employee begins leave, due to reasons 1, 2,  or 3 listed above, during the period that commences 5 weeks prior to the end of the academic term, the District may require the employee to continue taking leave until the end of the semester, if

(A) the leave is of greater than 2 weeks duration; and  

(B) the return to employment would occur during the 2-week period before the end of the semester.

 

Leave less than 3 weeks prior to end of the semester 

 

If the eligible, instructional employee begins leave, due to 1, 2, or 3 listed above, during the period that commences 3 weeks prior to the end of the semester and the duration of the leave is greater than 5 working days, the District may require the employee to continue to take leave until the end of the semester.  

 

SECTION TWO

 

FMLA LEAVE CONNECTED TO MILITARY SERVICE 

 

Leave Eligibility 

 

The FMLA provision of military associated leave is in two categories. Each one has some of its own definitions and stipulations. Therefore, they are dealt with separately in this Section of the policy. Definitions different than those in Section One are included under the respective reason for leave. Definitions that are the same as in Section One are NOT repeated in this Section.

 

QUALIFYING EXIGENCY 

 

An eligible employee may take FMLA leave for any qualifying exigency arising out of the fact that the spouse, son, daughter, or parent of the employee is on covered active duty (or has been notified of an impending call or order to covered active duty) in the Armed Forces. Examples include issues involved with short-notice deployment, military events and related activities, childcare and school activities, the need for financial and legal  arrangements, counseling, rest and recuperation, post-deployment activities, and other activities as defined by federal regulations.13 

 

Definitions: 

 

Covered active duty means  

 in the case of a member of a regular component of the Armed Forces, duty during deployment of the member  with the armed forces to a foreign country;  and  

 in the case of a member of a reserve component of the  Armed Forces, duty during deployment of the member with the armed forces to a foreign country under a call to order to active duty under a provision of law referred to in section 101(a)(13)(B) of title 10, United States Code.  

Son or daughter on active duty or call to active duty status means the employee's biological, adopted, or foster child, stepchild, legal ward, or a child for whom the employee stood in loco parentis, who is on active duty or call to active duty status, and who is of any age.

 

Certification14  

 

The District may require the eligible employee to obtain certification to help the district determine if the requested leave qualifies for FMLA leave for the purposes of a qualifying exigency. The District may deny FMLA leave if an eligible employee fails to provide requested certification.  

Employee Notice to District

 

Foreseeable Leave:  

 

When the necessity for leave for any qualifying exigency is foreseeable, whether because the spouse, son, daughter, or parent of the employee is on covered active duty, or because of notification of an impending call or order to covered active duty, the employee shall provide such notice to the District as is reasonable and practicable regardless of how far in advance the leave is foreseeable. As soon as practicable means as soon as both possible and practical, taking into account all of the facts and circumstances in the individual case.  

 

Unforeseeable Leave:  

 

When the approximate timing of the need for leave is not foreseeable, an employee shall provide the District notice of the need for leave as soon as practicable given the facts and circumstances of the particular case. Ordinarily, the employee shall notify the District within two (2) working days of learning of the need for leave, except in extraordinary circumstances where such notice is not feasible. Notice may be provided in person, by telephone, telegraph, fax, or other electronic means. If the eligible employee fails to notify the District as required unless the failure to comply is justified by unusual circumstances, the FMLA leave may be delayed or denied.  

 

Substitution of Paid Leave 

 

When an employee’s leave has been designated as FMLA leave any qualifying exigency, the District requires employees to substitute accrued vacation, or personal leave for the period of FMLA leave.

 

Intermittent or Reduced Schedule Leave

 

Eligible employees may take intermittent or reduced schedule leave for any qualifying exigency. The employee shall provide the district with as much notice as is practicable.  

 

Leave taken by an eligible instructional employees more than 5 weeks prior to end of the semester  

 

If an eligible, instructional employee begins leave due to any qualifying exigency more than 5 weeks prior to the end of the semester, the District may require the employee to continue taking leave until the end of the semester, if

(A) the leave is of at least 3 weeks duration; and  

(B) the return to employment would occur during the 3-week period before the end of the semester.

If the District chooses to require the eligible, instructional employee to stay on leave until the end of the semester, only the portion of the leave until the employee is ready and able to return to work shall be charged against the employee’s FMLA leave entitlement.

 

SERIOUS ILLNESS 

 

An eligible employee is eligible for leave to care for a spouse, child, parent or next of kin who is a covered servicemember with a serious illness or injury under the following conditions and definitions.  

 

Definitions:

 

Covered Service Member is

1. a member of the Armed Forces, including a member of the National Guard or Reserves, who is a undergoing medical treatment, recuperation, or therapy, is otherwise in outpatient status, or is otherwise on the temporary disability retired list, for a serious injury or illness; or

2. a veteran who is undergoing medical treatment, recuperation, or therapy, for a serious injury or illness and who was a member of the Armed Forces (including a member of the National Guard or Reserves) at any time during the period of five (5) years preceding the date on which the veteran undergoes that medical treatment, recuperation, or therapy.

Outpatient Status: used in respect to a covered service member, means the status of a member of the Armed Forces assigned to  

A) a military medical treatment facility as an outpatient; or

B) a unit established for the purpose of providing command and control of members of the Armed Forces receiving medical care as outpatients.  

 

Parent of a covered servicemember: is a covered servicemember’s biological, adoptive, step or foster father or mother, or any other individual who stood in loco parentis to the covered servicemember. This term does not include parents ―in law.‖  

 

Serious Injury or Illness:  

(A) in the case of a member of the Armed Forces, including the National Guard or Reserves, it means an injury or illness incurred by the member in the line of duty on active duty in the Armed Forces (or existed before the beginning of the member’s active duty and was aggravated by service in line of duty on active duty in the Armed Forces) and that may render the member medically unfit to perform the duties of the member’s office, grade, rank, or rating and

(B) in the case of a veteran who was a member of the Armed Forces, including a member of the National Guard of Reserves, at any time during a period as a covered service member defined in this policy, it means a qualifying (as defined by the U.S. Secretary of Labor) injury or illness that was incurred by the member in the line of duty on active duty in the Armed Forces (or existed before the beginning of the member’s active duty and was aggravated by service in the line of duty on active duty in the Armed Forces) and that manifested itself before or after the member became a veteran.

Son or daughter of a covered servicemember means a covered servicemember's biological, adopted, or foster child, stepchild, legal ward, or a child for whom the covered servicemember stood in loco parentis, and who is of any age.2 

 

Year: for leave to care for the serious injury or illness of a covered service member, the twelve (12) month period begins on the first day the eligible employee takes FMLA leave to care for a covered servicemember and ends 12 months after that date.  

 

An eligible employee who is the spouse, son, daughter, parent, or next of kin of a covered service member shall be entitled to a total of 26 weeks of leave during one 12-month period to care for the service member who has a serious injury or illness as defined in this policy. An eligible employee who cares for such a covered  

 

service member continues to be limited for reasons 1 through 4 in Section One and for any qualifying exigency to a total of 12 weeks of leave during a year as defined in this policy. For example, an eligible employee who cares for such a covered service member for 16 weeks during a 12 month period could only take a total of 10 weeks for reasons 1 through 4 in Section One and for any qualifying exigency. An eligible employee may not take more than 12 weeks of FMLA leave for reasons 1 through 4 in Section One and for any qualifying exigency regardless of how little leave the eligible employee may take to care for a spouse, child, parent or next of kin who is a covered servicemember with a serious illness or injury.

 

If husband and wife are both eligible employees employed by the District, the husband and wife are entitled to a combined total of 26 weeks of leave during one 12-month period to care for their spouse, son, daughter, parent, or next of kin who is a covered service member with a serious injury or illness as defined in this policy. A husband and wife who care for such a covered service member continues to be limited to a combined total of 12 weeks FMLA leave for reasons 1 through 3 in Section One and for any qualifying exigency during a year as defined in this policy. For example, a husband and wife who are both eligible employees and who care for such a covered service member for 16 weeks during a 12 month period could only take a combined total of 10 weeks for reasons 1 through 3 in Section One and for any qualifying exigency.

 

Medical Certification15 

 

The District may require the eligible employee to obtain certification of the covered service member’s serious health condition to help the District determine if the requested leave qualifies for FMLA leave. The District may deny FMLA leave if an eligible employee fails to provide requested certification.

 

Employee Notice to District

 

Foreseeable Leave:  


When the need for leave to care for a spouse, child, parent or next of kin who is a covered servicemember with a serious illness or injury is clearly foreseeable at least 30 days in advance, the employee shall provide the District with not less than 30 days' notice before the date the leave is to begin of the employee's intention to take leave for the specified reason. An eligible employee who has no reasonable excuse for his/her failure to provide the District with timely advance notice of the need for FMLA leave may delay the FMLA coverage of such leave until 30 days after the date the employee provides notice.

 

If the need for FMLA leave is foreseeable less than 30 days in advance, the employee shall notify the District as soon as practicable. If the employee fails to notify as soon as practicable, the District may delay granting FMLA leave for the length of time that the employee should have provided notice and when the employee actually gave notice.  

 

When the need for leave is to care for a spouse, child, parent or next of kin who is a covered servicemember with a serious illness or injury, the employee shall make a reasonable effort to schedule the treatment so as not to disrupt unduly the operations of the district subject to the approval of the health care provider of the spouse, son, daughter, or parent of the employee.  

 

Unforeseeable Leave:  

 

When the approximate timing of the need for leave is not foreseeable, an employee shall provide the District notice of the need for leave as soon as practicable given the facts and circumstances of the particular case. Ordinarily, the employee shall notify the District within two (2) working days of learning of the need for leave, except in extraordinary circumstances where such notice is not feasible. Notice may be provided in person, by telephone, telegraph, fax, or other electronic means. If the eligible employee fails to notify the District as required unless the failure to comply is justified by unusual circumstances, the FMLA leave may be delayed or denied.

 

Substitution of Paid Leave 

 

When an employee’s leave has been designated as FMLA leave to care for a spouse, child, parent or next of kin who is a covered servicemember with a serious illness or injury, the District requires employees to substitute accrued sick, vacation, or personal leave for the period of FMLA leave.

 

Intermittent or Reduced Schedule Leave 

 

To the extent practicable, employees requesting intermittent or reduced schedule leave to care for a spouse, child, parent or next of kin who is a covered servicemember with a serious illness or injury shall provide the District with not less than 30 days' notice, before the date the leave is to begin, of the employee's intention to take leave.  

 

Eligible employees may take intermittent or reduced schedule FMLA leave to care for a spouse, child, parent or next of kin who is a covered servicemember with a serious illness or injury when the medical need is best accommodated by such a schedule. The eligible employee shall make a reasonable effort to schedule the treatment so as not to disrupt unduly the operations of the employer, subject to the approval of the health care provider.  

When granting leave on an intermittent or reduced schedule to care for a spouse, child, parent or next of kin who is a covered servicemember with a serious illness or injury that is foreseeable based on planned medical treatment, the District may temporarily transfer non-instructional eligible employees for the period of scheduled intermittent or reduced leave to an alternative position for which the employee is qualified and which better accommodates recurring periods of leave than does the employee's regular position. The alternative position shall have equivalent pay and benefits but does not have to have equivalent duties. When the employee is able  

to return to full-time work, the employee shall be placed in the same or equivalent job as he/she had when the leave began. Specifically, upon returning from FMLA leave, an employee may be assigned to another position that is not necessarily the same as the employee's former job assignment. The employee will not be required to take more FMLA leave than necessary to address the circumstances requiring the need for the leave.  

 

If an eligible employee who meets the definition of an instructional employee requests intermittent or reduced schedule leave to care for a spouse, child, parent or next of kin who is a covered servicemember with a serious illness or injury that is foreseeable based on planned medical treatment and the employee would be on leave for greater than 20 percent of the total number of working days in the period during which the leave would extend, the District may require the employee to choose either

 

 

a. to take medical leave for periods of a particular duration, not to exceed the duration of the planned medical treatment; or  

b. to transfer temporarily to an available alternative position offered by the employer for which the employee is qualified and that has equivalent pay and benefits and better accommodates recurring periods of leave than the regular employment position of the employee.  

If the employee chooses to transfer to an alternative position it shall have equivalent pay and benefits but does not have to have equivalent duties. When the employee is able to return to full-time work, the employee shall be placed in the same or equivalent job as he/she had when the leave began. Specifically, upon returning from FMLA leave, a teacher may be assigned to another position that is not necessarily the same as the teacher’s former job assignment. The employee will not be required to take more FMLA leave than necessary to address the circumstances the required the need for the leave.

 

An eligible instructional employee, who needs intermittent leave or leave on a reduced leave schedule leave to care for a spouse, child, parent or next of kin who is a covered servicemember with a serious illness or injury, may not be transferred to an alternative position during the period of the employee's intermittent or reduced leave schedule if, based on the foreseeable planned medical treatment, the employee would be on leave for 20 percent or less of the total number of working days over the period the leave would extend.  

 

Leave taken by eligible instructional employees near the end of the academic the semester 

 

In any of the following scenarios, if the district chooses to require the eligible, instructional employee to stay on leave until the end of the semester, only the portion of the leave until the employee is ready and able to return to work shall be charged against the employee’s FMLA leave entitlement. The excess non-FMLA leave will not be considered excessive absenteeism.  

 

Leave more than 5 weeks prior to end of the semester 

 

If the eligible, instructional employee begins leave, for any qualifying exigency or to care for a spouse, child, parent or next of kin who is a covered servicemember with a serious illness or injury more than 5 weeks prior to the end of the semester, the District may require the employee to continue taking leave until the end of the semester, if

(A) the leave is of at least 3 weeks duration; and  

(B) the return to employment would occur during the 3-week period before the end of the semester.

 

Leave less than 5 weeks prior to end of the semester 

 

If the eligible, instructional employee begins leave to care for a spouse, child, parent or next of kin who is a covered servicemember with a serious illness or injury during the period that commences 5 weeks prior to the end of the semester, the District may require the employee to continue taking leave until the end of the semester, if

(A) the leave is of greater than 2 weeks duration; and  

(B) the return to employment would occur during the 2-week period before the end of the semester.

 

Leave less than 3 weeks prior to end of the semester 

 

If the eligible, instructional employee begins leave to care for a spouse, child, parent or next of kin who is a covered servicemember with a serious illness or injury during the period that commences 3 weeks prior to the end of the semester and the duration of the leave is greater than 5 working days, the District may require the employee to continue to take leave until the end of the semester.

 

Notes: This policy is similar to Policy 8.23. If you change this policy, review 8.23 at the same time to ensure applicable consistency between the two.

 

 Determining whether an absence qualifies as FMLA leave is a DISTRICT responsibility and not the employee’s. While much of the statutes’ language refers to an employee’s request for FMLA leave, the employee has NO mandatory responsibility for initiating the exchange of information that might relate his/her absence to that of the FMLA. The District has the right and the duty to ask for enough information concerning an employee’s absence to make a determination. The employee has the responsibility and duty to respond to questions asked in an effort for the District to make the initial determination. Any issue of medical certification to be provided by the employee is secondary to that of informal questioning to determine whether the absence does in fact, fall under the FMLA umbrella. The District must fulfill its responsibility for the posting of employee FMLA notice requirements to make those requirements enforceable. This is done through posting the notices available at the link in footnote #4 AND by the employee’s receipt of this policy in the employee handbook.  

 

 1 It is possible for a full time employee to be eligible for FMLA leave one year and not the next. For example, if an employee on a 190 day contract takes the full 12 weeks of FMLA leave in year one, that would mean the employee only worked 130 days. Assuming the employee is credited for 8 hours per workday, the employee would have only worked 1040 (130 x 8=1040) which would make the employee ineligible for FMLA leave for the year following the year in which the employee took the leave.

 

2 The Wage and Hour Division of the Department of Labor has issued a Guidance to help interpret the scope of the definition of "son or daughter" as it applies to an employee standing ―in loco parentis‖ to a child. The following quote from the Guidance is offered to give an idea of the complexity of the definition. (The Guidance, in full, is available by calling the ASBA office or at the link in footnote #4.)  

 Congress intended the definition of “son or daughter” to reflect “the reality that many children in the United States today do not live in traditional „nuclear‟ families with their biological father and mother. Increasingly, those who find themselves in need of workplace accommodation of their child care responsibilities are not the biological parent of the children they care for, but their adoptive, step, or foster parents, their guardians, or sometimes simply their grandparents or other relatives or adults.” Congress stated that the definition was intended to be “construed to ensure that an employee who actually has day-to-day responsibility for caring for a child is entitled to leave even if the employee does not have a biological or legal relationship to that child.”

 

 3 Districts can choose one of four possible ―12-month periods.‖ Each one has possible advantages and disadvantages. Choose the one that will work best for your district. The four options are:

1) the calendar year;

2) Any fixed 12-month leave year such as a fiscal year or a year starting on an employee’s ―anniversary‖ date;

3) The 12-month period measured forward from the date any employee’s first FMLA leave for reasons 1 through 5 begins;

4) A rolling 12-month period measured backward from the date an employee uses any FMLA leave for reasons 1 through 5.

 

 4 A Department of Labor poster along with several additional forms that are necessary to fulfill FMLA’s requirements are available at http://www.dol.gov/whd/fmla/index.htm. Please note that the  DOL forms lack the required disclaimer required by the Genetic Information Nondiscrimination Act (GINA). We suggest that you include the following language taken from the final rule implementing the  GINA:

  The Genetic Information Nondiscrimination Act of 2008 (GINA) prohibits employers and other entities covered by GINA Title II from requesting or requiring genetic information of an individual or family member of the individual, except as specifically allowed by this law. To comply with this law, we are asking that you not provide any genetic information when responding to this request for medical information. “Genetic information,” as defined by GINA, includes an individual‟s family medical history, the results of an individual‟s or family member‟s genetic tests, the fact that an individual or an individual‟s family member sought or received genetic services, and genetic information of a fetus carried by an individual or an individual‟s family member or an embryo lawfully held by an individual or family member receiving assistive reproductive services. 

 

 5 We suggest you use the Department of Labor’s Notice of Eligibility and Rights and Responsibilities form (otherwise known as Appendix D) to help you fulfill the requirements of this section. It’s available at the link in footnote #4 or by calling the ASBA office. When making the determination, we suggest initially erring on the side of granting it. Retroactively designating leave as FMLA has more potential liability for the district if the employee can demonstrate the initial failure to grant the leave under FMLA caused him/her harm or injury. If due to receipt of the medical certification, it turns out that the leave does not qualify, you will need to readjust the available FMLA leave accordingly.

 

6 As used in this policy, ―applicable‖ is a very important word. Some leave taken under FMLA also applies to sick leave and therefore, the employee will get paid for the leave to the extent the employee has sick leave accrued. Other leave taken under FMLA is not applicable to sick leave and therefore the FMLA leave is unpaid. For instance, ―applicable leave‖ in terms of time taken under FMLA due to the birth of a child will vary depending on the language in your District’s policy on sick leave.  For instance, if sick leave may be taken ―for reason of personal illness or illness in the immediate family‖ (based on the statutory definition in 6-17-1202, and an employee gives birth to a child, she may take sick leave for the amount of time that her personal physician deems it necessary for her to physically recover from childbirth.  Once the medically necessary time has passed, sick leave is no longer appropriate and cannot be used.  While under the FMLA, the employee could take additional time off work, she would need to take unpaid FMLA leave for this purpose, unless she had personal days or vacation days available.  However, if your district has a much more liberal definition of sick leave in  

 

District policy, the results could be entirely different. Another example would be the potential for overlap between pregnancy complications that arise to the level of a ―serious health condition.‖ For instance, pregnancy complications that rose to the level of a ―serious health condition‖ would qualify for both, while missing work for a dentist’s appointment would qualify for sick leave, but would not qualify for FMLA leave. Consult policy 3.8—LICENSED PERSONNEL SICK LEAVE when making the determination of what sick leave qualifies under both policies.  

 

 7 There are several issues that must be addressed in the written notice. Appendix E of Part 825 available from the Wage and Hour Division of the US Department of Labor is a good way to both give your employee written notice and help ensure you have included the necessary information in the notice. Appendix E is available at the link contained in footnote #4 or by calling the ASBA office.

 

 8 The District cannot cancel an employee’s insurance for the employee’s failure to pay his/her share of the premium until the payment is 30 or more days late. The District must give prior, written notice to the employee at least 15 days prior to the cancelation of the policy stating that the policy will be terminated on a given date if payment is not received by that date which must be at least 15 days from the date of the letter.

 

 9 Due to the district’s liability for meeting the requirement of this paragraph and similar obligations for life insurance premiums or other benefits, the District needs to consider picking up the costs of such premiums during an employee’s unpaid FMLA leave if the employee fails to pay his/her share of the costs. If the District elects to maintain such benefits during the leave, at the conclusion of leave the District is entitled to recover only the costs incurred for paying the employee's share of any premiums whether or not the employee returns to work. To help you decide if you should choose to pay premium costs in such a situation, the following except from 29 CFR 825.212(c):

 

  If coverage lapses because an employee has not made required premium payments, upon the employee's return from FMLA leave the employer must still restore the employee to coverage/benefits equivalent to those the employee would have had if leave had not been taken and the premium payment(s) had not been missed, including family or dependent coverage. See § 825.215(d)(1) through (5). In such case, an employee may not be required to meet any qualification requirements imposed by the plan, including any new preexisting condition waiting period, to wait for an open season, or to pass a medical examination to obtain reinstatement of coverage. If an employer terminates an employee's insurance in accordance with this section and fails to restore the employee's health insurance as required by this section upon the employee's return, the employer may be liable for benefits lost by reason of the violation, for other actual monetary losses sustained as a direct result of the violation, and for appropriate equitable relief tailored to the harm suffered. 

 

10 You may choose the time interval of the required duty to report, but it must be reasonable.

 

11 ASBA model policy 3.8—LICENSED PERSONNEL SICK LEAVE includes language entitling employees with up to 15 days of sick leave in a school-year for issue relating to the adoption of child. I you have not adopted this provision, delete #2 from this sentence. Include reason #1 if you have a liberal sick leave policy that would permit leave to be taken for bonding with a new born son or daughter.

 

12 The Department of Labor’s Designation Notice has entries that address this section’s requirements. It’s very helpful. Unfortunately, the titles of the DOL forms leave a lot to be desired. The Designation notice and the Medical Condition Certification form are both listed as Appendix E. For this section you will actually need both of them; the Designation Notice to fulfill your notice requirements and the medical certification form to enable you to determine if the employee’s leave is actually covered under the FMLA. They are both available at the link in footnote #4 or by calling the ASBA office.

 

13 The types and amounts of leave available for a particular type of qualifying exigency are covered in 29 C.F.R. § 825.126. Call the ASBA office for a copy. While the current CFR has not been updated  

since the FMLA law was amended, it can still be helpful to give an idea of the types of circumstances that trigger leave eligibility.  

 

14 You can use Appendix G, Certification of Qualifying Exigency for Military Family Leave to obtain the certification. (It hasn’t been updated to meet the changes in the FMLA law, but it will work. It’s available at the link in footnote #4 or by calling the ASBA office.

 

15 You can use Appendix H, Covered Service Member Serious Injury form to obtain the certification. It’s available at the link in footnote #4 or by calling the ASBA office.

 

 Cross Reference: 3.8—LICENSED PERSONNEL SICK LEAVE

Legal References: 29 USC §§ 2601 et seq.

   29 CFR part 825  

 

Date Adopted:  May 17, 2004

Last Revised:  July 1, 2013

3.33—ASSIGNMENT OF EXTRA DUTIES FOR CERTIFIED PERSONNEL

 

From time to time extra duties may be assigned to certified personnel by the school principal or the Superintendent as circumstances dictate.

 

 

 

Legal Reference: A.C.A. § 6-17-201 

 

 

 

 

Date Adopted:  May 17, 2004

Last Revised: 

3.34—LICENSED PERSONNEL CELL PHONE USE

 

Use of cell phones or other electronic communication devices by employees during instructional time for other than instructional purposes is strictly forbidden unless specifically approved in advance by the superintendent, building principal, or their designees.1 

 

District staff shall not be given cell phones or computers for any purpose other than their specific use associated with school business. School employees who use a school issued cell phones and/or computers for non-school purposes, except as permitted by District policy, shall be subject to discipline, up to and including termination. School employees who are issued District cell phones due to the requirements of their position may use the phone for personal use on an ―as needed‖ basis provided it is not during instructional time.2 

 

All employees are forbidden from using school issued cell phones while driving any vehicle at any time. Violation may result in disciplinary action up to and including termination.3

 

 

Notes:  This policy is similar to Policy 8.25. If you change this policy, review 8.25 at the same time to ensure applicable consistency between the two.

 

1 The goal is to eliminate the use of cell phones during instructional time for other than instructional purposes. You may change who has the authority to approve the use of cell phones if you so wish.

 

2 The IRS has changed its position regarding the use of district issued cell phones for personal use for those employees who have a genuine need for a cell phone due to their job’s duties. Cell phones cannot be issued as a fringe benefit, but only as a ―legitimate‖ need related to their job’s responsibilities. There is no longer a need to keep track of personal calls and claim their value as income. The district has the option of supplying the phone directly to the employee or of reimbursing the employee for the cost of his/her personal phone that is used for both District and personal purposes. Any such reimbursement can only be for the specific employee and not any other individuals associated with that employee’s cell phone plan. There has been no change to the use of school computers for personal purposes.

 

When considering the pros and cons of school issued technology, keep in mind that any correspondence made on such technology (cell phone, iPad, computer) would be subject to inspection under the Freedom of Information Act. Because it is district issued, there would be no differentiation between personal and school use.

 

3 This sentence is included because insurance companies have ruled that injuries occurring while driving and talking on school issued cell phones are subject to workers comp awards.

 

Cross References:  4.47— POSSESSION AND USE OF CELL PHONES, BEEPERS, ETC.

   7.14—USE OF DISTRICT CELL PHONES AND COMPUTERS

 

Legal Reference: IRS Publication 15 B

Date Adopted:  May 17, 2004

Last Revised:  July 1, 2013

3.35—CERTIFIED PERSONNEL BENEFITS

 

 

The Berryville School District provides its certified personnel benefits consisting of the following. 

 

1. The priceless reward of helping shape the life and future of our children;

2. Health insurance assistance;

3. Contribution to the teacher retirement system;

4. One sick leave day per contract calendar month, or greater portion thereof;

5. 2 Personal days;

6. Dental Insurance.

Legal Reference: A.C.A. § 6-17-201

 

 

Date Adopted:  May 17, 2004

Last Revised:    July 1, 2011 

3.36—LICENSED PERSONNEL DISMISSAL AND NON-RENEWAL

 

For procedures relating to the termination and non-renewal of teachers, please refer to the Arkansas Teacher Fair Dismissal Act (A.C.A. §§ 6-17-1501 et seq and the Teacher Evaluation Support System (A.C.A. §§ 6-17-2801 et seq.). The Acts specifically are not made a part of this policy by this reference.

 

A copy of the statutes are available for review in the office of the principal of each school building.

 

 

 

Legal Reference: A.C.A. § 6-17-201

A.C.A. §§ 6-17-1501 et seq.

A.C.A. §§ 6-17-2801 et seq.

 

 

 

Date Adopted:

Last Revised: May 30, 2014

 

3.37—ASSIGNMENT OF TEACHER AIDES

 

The assignment of teacher aides shall be made by the principal or his/her designee. Changes in the assignments may be made as necessary due to changes in the student population, teacher changes, and to best meet the educational needs of the students.

 

 

 

 

Legal Reference: A.C.A. § 6-17-201

 

 

 

 

Date Adopted:  May 17, 2004

Last Revised: 

3.38—CERTIFIED PERSONNEL RESPONSIBILITIES GOVERNING BULLYING

 

Teachers and other school employees who have witnessed, or are reliably informed that, a student has been a victim of bullying as defined in this policy, including a single action which if allowed to continue would constitute bullying, shall report the incident(s) to the principal. The principal or his/her designee shall be responsible for investigating the incident(s) to determine if disciplinary action is warranted.

 

The person or persons reporting behavior they consider to be bullying shall not be subject to retaliation or reprisal in any form.

 

District staff are required to help enforce implementation of the district’s anti-bullying policy. The district’s definition of bullying is included below. Students who bully another person are to be held accountable for their actions whether they occur on school equipment or property; off school property at a school-sponsored or school-approved function, activity, or event; or going to or from school or a school activity. Students are encouraged to report behavior they consider to be bullying, including a single action which if allowed to continue would constitute bullying, to their teacher or the building principal. The report may be made anonymously.

 

Definitions:

 

Bullying means the intentional harassment, intimidation, humiliation, ridicule, defamation, or threat or incitement of violence by a student against another student or public school employee by a written, verbal, electronic, or physical act that causes or creates a clear and present danger of:

 

 Physical harm to a public school employee or student or damage to the public school employee's or student's property;

 Substantial interference with a student's education or with a public school employee's role in education;

 A hostile educational environment for one (1) or more students or public school employees due to the severity, persistence, or pervasiveness of the act; or

 Substantial disruption of the orderly operation of the school or educational environment;

Electronic act means without limitation a communication or image transmitted by means of an electronic device, including without limitation a telephone, wireless phone or other wireless communications device, computer, or pager that results in the substantial disruption of the orderly operation of the school or educational environment.  

 

Electronic acts of bullying are prohibited whether or not the electronic act originated on school property or with school equipment, if the electronic act is directed specifically at students or school personnel and maliciously intended for the purpose of disrupting school, and has a high likelihood of succeeding in that purpose;

 

Harassment means a pattern of unwelcome verbal or physical conduct relating to another person's constitutionally or statutorily protected status that causes, or reasonably should be expected to cause, substantial interference with the other's performance in the school environment; and

 

Substantial disruption means without limitation that any one or more of the following occur as a result of the bullying:

 

 Necessary cessation of instruction or educational activities;

 

 Inability of students or educational staff to focus on learning or function as an educational unit because of a hostile environment;

 

 Severe or repetitive disciplinary measures are needed in the classroom or during educational activities; or

 

 Exhibition of other behaviors by students or educational staff that substantially interfere with the learning environment.

 

Examples of "Bullying" may include but are not limited to a pattern of behavior involving one or more of the following:

1. Sarcastic "compliments" about another student’s personal appearance,

 

2. Pointed questions intended to embarrass or humiliate,

 

3. Mocking, taunting or belittling,

 

4. Non-verbal threats and/or intimidation such as ―fronting‖ or ―chesting‖ a person,

 

5. Demeaning humor relating to a student’s race, gender, ethnicity or personal characteristics,

 

6. Blackmail, extortion, demands for protection money or other involuntary donations or loans,

 

7. Blocking access to school property or facilities,

 

8. Deliberate physical contact or injury to person or property,

 

9. Stealing or hiding books or belongings, and/or

10. Threats of harm to student(s), possessions, or others.

 

11. Sexual harassment, as governed by policy 3.26, is also a form of bullying,

12. Teasing or name-calling based on the belief or perception that an individual is not conforming to  expected gender roles (Example: ―Slut‖) or conduct or is homosexual, regardless of whether the student self-identifies as homosexual (Examples: ―You are so gay.‖ ―Fag‖ ―Queer‖).

Notes:  A school employee who has reported violations under the school district's policy shall be immune from any tort liability which may arise from the failure to remedy the reported incident.

 

This policy is similar to Policy 8.26. If you change this policy, review 8.26 at the same time to ensure consistency between the two.

 

 

Legal Reference: A.C.A. § 6-18-514

 

 

Date Adopted:  February 16, 2004

Last Revised:     July 1, 2011

3.39—PERSONNEL POLICY COMMITTEE ELECTION PROCEDURES

 

Personnel Policy Committee elections will be held during no later than the last day of September, and a list of committee members will be posted.

 

The committee will be composed of one building representative from each of the following:  K-2, 3-5, 6-8, 9-12, two at-large members, two principals, and the superintendent.  Each member elected will serve one two-year term, beginning with the at-large representatives in the 2002-03 school year.  No member shall serve two consecutive terms.  After one year off the committee individuals are eligible for re-election.  In the event a building representative term cannot be completed, a new election at the appropriate building level will be held to fill the vacancy for the remainder of the term.

 

 

 

Date Adopted:  May 17, 2004

Last Revised:  July 1, 2013

3.40—CERTIFIED PERSONNEL DUTY TO REPORT CHILD ABUSE, MALTREATMENT OR NEGLECT 

 

It is the statutory duty of certified school district employees who have reasonable cause to suspect child abuse or maltreatment to directly and personally report these suspicions to the Arkansas Child Abuse Hotline, by calling 1-800-482-5964. Failure to report suspected child abuse, maltreatment or neglect by calling the Hotline can lead to criminal prosecution and individual civil liability of the person who has this duty.  Notification of local or state law enforcement does not satisfy the duty to report; only notification by means of the Child Abuse Hotline discharges this duty.  

 

The duty to report suspected child abuse or maltreatment is a direct and personal duty, and cannot be assigned or delegated to another person.   There is no duty to investigate, confirm or substantiate statements a student may have made which form the basis of the reasonable cause to believe that the student may have been abused or subjected to maltreatment by another person; however, a person with a duty to report may find it helpful to make a limited inquiry to assist in the formation of a belief that child abuse, maltreatment or neglect has occurred, or to rule out such a belief1. Employees and volunteers who call the Child Abuse Hotline in good faith are immune from civil liability and criminal prosecution.

 

By law, no school district or school district employee may prohibit or restrict an employee or volunteer from directly reporting suspected child abuse or maltreatment, or require that any person notify or seek permission from any person before making a report to the Child Abuse Hotline.  

 

Notes: This policy is similar to Policy 8.34. if you change this policy, review 8.34 at the same time to ensure applicable consistency between the two.

1 This is a delicate matter and the district would be wise to avail itself of professional development in this area available from DHS and other sources.

 

 

Legal References:  A.C.A. § 12-12-504, 507, 517

 

 

Date Adopted:  June 16, 2008

Last Revised:

3.41—CERTIFIED PERSONNEL VIDEO SURVEILLANCE AND  

OTHER MONITORING

 

The Board of Directors has a responsibility to maintain discipline, protect the safety, security, and welfare of its students, staff, and visitors while at the same time safeguarding district facilities, vehicles, and equipment. As part of fulfilling this responsibility, the board authorizes the use of video/audio surveillance cameras, automatic identification, data compilation devices, and technology capable of tracking the physical location of district equipment, students, and/or personnel.  

 

The placement of video/audio surveillance cameras shall be based on the presumption and belief that students, staff and visitors have no reasonable expectation of privacy anywhere on or near school property, facilities, vehicles, or equipment, with the exception of places such as rest rooms or dressing areas where an expectation of bodily privacy is reasonable and customary.  

 

Signs shall be posted on district property and in or on district vehicles to notify students, staff, and visitors that video cameras may be in use. Violations of school personnel policies or laws caught by the cameras and other technologies authorized in this policy may result in disciplinary action.  

 

The district shall retain copies of video recordings until they are erased which may be accomplished by either deletion or copying over with a new recording.  

 

Videos, automatic identification, or data compilations containing evidence of a violation of district personnel policies and/or state or federal law shall be retained until the issue of the misconduct is no longer subject to review or appeal as determined by board policy or staff handbook; any release or viewing of such records shall be in accordance with current law.  

 

Staff who vandalize, damage, defeat, disable, or render inoperable (temporarily or permanently) surveillance cameras and equipment, automatic identification, or data compilation devices shall be subject to appropriate disciplinary action and referral to appropriate law enforcement authorities.

 

Video recordings and automatic identification or data compilation records may become a part of a staff member’s personnel record.

 

Note: This policy is similar to policies 4.48 and 8.29. If you change this policy, review 4.48 and 8.29 at the same time to ensure applicable consistency between the policies.  

 

Date Adopted:  June 16, 2008

Last Revised:  July 1, 2011

3.42—RELEASE of STUDENT’S FREE and REDUCED PRICE MEAL ELIGIBLITY INFORMATION

 

As part of the district’s participation in the National School Lunch Program and the School Breakfast Program, the district collects eligibility data from its students. The data’s confidentiality is very important and is governed by federal law. The district has made the determination to release student eligibility status or information1 as permitted by law. Federal law governs how eligibility data may be released and to whom. The district will take the following steps to ensure its confidentiality:

 

Some data may be released to government agencies or programs authorized by law to receive such data without parental consent, while other data may only be released after obtaining parental consent. In both instances, allowable information shall only be released on a need to know basis to individuals authorized to receive the data. The recipients shall sign an agreement with the district specifying the names or titles of the persons who may have access to the eligibility information. The agreement shall further specify the specific purpose(s) for which the data will be used and how the recipient(s) shall protect the data from further, unauthorized disclosures.

 

The superintendent shall designate the staff member(s) responsible for making eligibility determinations. Release of eligibility information to other district staff shall be limited to as few individuals as possible who shall have a specific need to know such information to perform their job responsibilities. Principals, counselors, teachers, and administrators shall not have routine access to eligibility information or status.

 

Each staff person with access to individual eligibility information shall be notified of their personal liability for its unauthorized disclosure and shall receive appropriate training on the laws governing the restrictions of such information.2 

 

 

 

Notes:  The Children’s Nutrition Unit of the ADE website (http://cnn.k12.ar.us) has the referenced Commissioner’s Memos as well as helpful information to develop your policy statement packet. Additionally, Commissioner’s Memos FIN 09-041 has two attachments that will go a long way toward explaining the restrictions on the release of eligibility information and status.

 

1 The district owns the data and has the right to choose whether or not to release it to anyone. (Isn’t that interesting!) Therefore, the district must make the decisions concerning its release. With the ownership comes the responsibility to ensure proper security of the data.  

 

2 The penalty for improper disclosure of eligibility information is a fine of not more than $1000 and/or imprisonment of not more than one year.

 

 

Legal References: Commissioner’s Memos IA-05-018, FIN 09-041, and IA 99-011

   

ADE Eligibility Manual for School Meals Revised July 2008

7 CFR 210.1 – 210.31

   7 CFR 220.1 – 220.22

   42 USC 1758(b)(6)

 

 

Date Adopted:  October 26, 2009

Last Revised:

3.43—DUTY OF LICENSED EMPLOYEES TO MAINTAIN LICENSE IN GOOD STANDING

 

It is the responsibility of each teacher, and not the district, to keep his/her teaching license continuously renewed with no lapses in licensure, and in good standing with the State Board of Education.  Failure of a teacher to do so will be grounds for termination.

 

Legal References: A.C.A. § 6-17-401

   

 

 

 

Date Adopted:  October 26, 2009

Last Revised:  July 1, 2013 

3.44—CERTIFIED PERSONNEL WORKPLACE INJURIES and WORKERS’ COMPENSATION

 

The district provides Workers’ Compensation Insurance, as required by law. Employees who sustain any injury at work must immediately notify their immediate supervisor, or in the absence of their immediate supervisor notify Superintendent’s Office. An injured employee must fill out a Form N and the employee’s supervisor will determine whether to report the claim or to file the paperwork if the injury requires neither medical treatment or lost work time. While many injuries will require no medical treatment or time lost at work, should the need for treatment arise later, it is important that there be a record that the injury occurred. All employees have a duty to provide information and make statements as requested for the purposes of the claim assessment and investigation.  

 

For injuries requiring medical attention, the district will exercise its right to designate the initial treating physician and an injured employee will be directed to seek medical attention, if necessary, from a specific physician or clinic.

 

Workers’ Compensation absences may be designated as FMLA absences when the criteria are met under FMLA for a serious health condition.

 

An employee who is absent from work due to a workplace injury or receiving temporary disability benefits due to a Workers’ Compensation claim will utilize any sick leave accumulation he or she may have at the rate of 1/3 of a sick leave day for day of absence to bring the total amount of combined income up to 100% of usual contracted pay, unless the employee gives the school district written notice to not use sick leave days in this manner.  No employee may realize a net compensation gain from a combination of Workers’ Compensation benefits and sick leave in excess of contracted pay. Sick leave days used for workplace injuries will not be restored to the employee.

 

 

 

Note:   This policy is similar to policy 8.36. If you change this policy, review 8.36 at the same time to ensure applicable consistency between the two.

 

 

 

Cross Reference: 8.23—NONCERTIFIED PERSONNEL FAMILY MEDICAL LEAVE

 

 

 

Legal References: Ark. Workers Compensation Commission RULE 099.33 - MANAGED CARE  

   A.C.A. § 11-9-508(d)(5)(A)

A.C.A. § 11-9-514(a)(3)(A)(i)

 

Date Adopted:  October 26, 2009

Last Revised:

3.45—LICENSED PERSONNEL SOCIAL NETWORKING AND ETHICS

Definitions

 

Social Media Account: a personal, individual, and non-work related account with an electronic medium or service where users may create, share, or view user-generated content, including videos, photographs, blogs, podcasts, messages, emails or website profiles or locations, such as FaceBook, Twitter, LinkedIn, MySpace, Instagram.

 

Professional/education Social Media Account:  an account with an electronic medium or service where users may create, share, or view user-generated content, including videos, photographs, blogs, podcasts, messages, emails or website profiles or locations, such as FaceBook, Twitter, LinkedIn, MySpace, Instagram.

 

Blogs: are a type of networking and can be either social or professional in their orientation. Professional blogs are encouraged and can provide a place for teachers to post homework, keep parents up-to-date, and interact

with students concerning school related activities. Social blogs are discouraged to the extent they involve teachers and students in a non-education oriented format.

 

Policy

 

Technology used appropriately gives faculty new opportunities to engage students. District staff  are encouraged to use educational technology, the Internet, and professional/education social networks to raise student achievement and to improve communication with parents and students. Technology and social media accounts also offer staff many ways they can present themselves unprofessionally and/or interact with students inappropriately.  

 

It is the duty of each staff member to appropriately manage all interactions with students, regardless of whether contact or interaction with a student occurs face-to-face or by means of technology, to ensure that the appropriate staff/student relationship is maintained. This includes instances when students initiate contact or behave inappropriately themselves.

 

Public school employees are, and always have been, held to a high standard of behavior. Staff members are reminded that whether specific sorts of contacts are permitted or not specifically forbidden by policy, they will be held to a high standard of conduct in all their interactions with students. Failure to create, enforce and maintain appropriate professional and interpersonal boundaries with students could adversely affect the District’s relationship with the community and jeopardize the employee’s employment with the district.

 

The Arkansas Department of Education Rules Governing the Code of Ethics for Arkansas Educators requires District staff to maintain a professional relationship with each student, both in and outside the classroom. The School Board of Directors encourages all staff to read and become familiar with the Rules.  Conduct in violation of the Rules Governing the Code of Ethics for Arkansas Educators, including, but not limited to conduct relating to the inappropriate use of technology or online resources, may be reported to the Professional License Standards Board (PLSB) and may form the basis for disciplinary action up to and including termination.

 

Staff members are discouraged from creating personal social media accounts to which they invite students to be friends or followers.1 Employees taking such action do so at their own risk and are advised to monitor the site’s privacy settings regularly.

 

District employees may set up blogs and other professional/education social media accounts using District resources and following District guidelines1 to promote communications with students, parents, and the community concerning school-related activities and for the purpose of supplementing classroom instruction. Accessing professional/education social media during school hours is permitted.

 

Staff are reminded that the same relationship, exchange, interaction, information, or behavior that would be unacceptable in a non-technological medium, is unacceptable when done through the use of technology. In fact, due to the vastly increased potential audience digital dissemination presents, extra caution must be exercised by staff to ensure they don’t cross the line of acceptability. A good rule of thumb for staff to use is, “if you wouldn’t say it in class, don’t say it online.”

 

Whether permitted or not specifically forbidden by policy, or when expressed in an adult-to-adult, face-to-face  context, what in other mediums of expression could remain private opinions, including “likes” or comments that endorse or support the message or speech of another person, when expressed by staff on a school-based social media website, have the potential to be disseminated far beyond the speaker’s desire or intention. This could undermine the public’s perception of the individual’s fitness to educate students, thus undermining the teacher’s effectiveness. In this way, the expression and publication of such opinions could potentially lead to disciplinary action being taken against the staff member, up to and including termination or nonrenewal of the contract of employment.

 

Accessing social media websites for personal use during school hours is prohibited, except during breaks or preparation periods. Staff are discouraged from accessing social media websites on personal equipment during their breaks and/or preparation periods because, while this is not prohibited, it may give the public the appearance that such access is occurring during instructional time. Staff shall not access social media websites using district equipment at any time, including during breaks or preparation periods, except in an emergency situation or with the express prior permission of school administration. All school district employees who participate in social media websites shall not post any school district data, documents, photographs taken at school or of students without written permission by parent, logos, or other district owned or created information on any website.  Further, the posting of any private or confidential school district material, on such websites is strictly prohibited.

 

 

Specifically, the following forms of technology based interactivity or connectivity are expressly permitted or forbidden:2

 

Privacy of Employee's Social Media Accounts

 

In compliance with A.C.A. § 11-2-124, the District shall not require, request, suggest, or cause a current or prospective employee to:

1.              Disclose the username and/or password to his/her personal social media account;

2.              Add an employee, supervisor, or administrator to the list of contacts associated with his/her personal social media account;

3.              Change the privacy settings associated with his/her personal social media account; or

4.              Retaliate against the employee for refusing to disclose the username and/or password to his/her personal social media account.

 

Notwithstanding any other provision in this policy, the District reserves the right to view any information about a current or prospective employee that is publicly available on the Internet.

 

In the event that the district inadvertently obtains access to information that would enable the district to have access to an employee’s personal social media account, the district will not use this information to gain access to the employee’s social media account. However, disciplinary action may be taken against an employee in accord with other District policy for using district equipment or network capability to access such an account.  Employees have no expectation of privacy in their use of District issued computers, other electronic device, or use of the District's network. (See policy 3.28—LICENSED PERSONNEL COMPUTER USE POLICY)

 

 

Notes:        While only the Privacy of Employee's Social Media Accounts section of this policy is required by statute, ASBA strongly recommends adopting the policy in its entirety after consulting with staff for localizing purposes.

 

This policy is similar to policy 8.37. If you change this policy, review 8.37 at the same time to ensure applicable consistency between the two.

 

1 The policy’s separate definitions for “social media websites” and “professional/education social media accounts” are important. Districts are encouraged to establish “professional/education social media accounts” as an acceptable means of teacher and district communication with students and parents. This can serve to discourage inappropriate staff/student interactions on “social media websites.” ASBA strongly suggests using the discussions for

 

modifying/personalizing this policy as a means for generating the acceptable guidelines and procedures for staff creation of private “professional/education social networks”. We recommend NOT incorporating the guidelines into the policy, but have them available for all staff to review. Incorporating them into the policy will make it much harder to change them if the need arises.

 

2 What is and is not acceptable staff/student interaction on social networking websites is an education community decision, and will vary from district to district. As a general rule, the greater the degree of real-life connections and interactivity between staff and students that normally occur in the community, the greater the tolerance will be for virtual connections and interactivity. Use the following list to help guide discussions with staff to determine which items should be included in the policy and with what modifications/stipulations. It is as important to include in the policy what is permitted as what is not permitted. Your discussions may elicit additional bullets to include in the policy.

·                  Sharing personal landline or cell phone numbers with students;

·                  Text messaging students;

·                  Emailing students other than through and to school controlled and monitored accounts;

·                  Soliciting students as friends or contacts on social networking websites;

·                  Accepting the solicitation of students as friends or contacts on social networking websites;

·                  Creation of administratively approved and sanctioned  “groups” on social networking websites that permit the broadcast of information without granting students access to staff member’s personal information;

·                  Sharing personal websites or other media access information with students through which the staff member would share personal information and occurrences.

 

 

Cross reference:   3.28—LICENSED PERSONNEL COMPUTER USE POLICY

 

 

Legal Reference:                     A.C.A. § 11-2-124

RULES GOVERNING THE CODE OF ETHICS FOR ARKANSAS EDUCATORS

 

 

Date Adopted:

Last Revised: May 31, 2014

3.47—DEPOSITING COLLECTED FUNDS  

 

From time to time, staff members may collect funds in the course of their employment. It is the responsibility of any staff member to deposit such funds they have collected daily1 into the appropriate accounts for which they have been collected. The Superintendent or his/her designee shall be responsible for determining the need for receipts for funds collected and other record keeping requirements and of notifying staff of the requirements.

 

Staff that use any funds collected in the course of their employment for personal purposes, or who deposit such funds in a personal account, may be subject to discipline up to and including termination.

 

 

 

Notes: This policy is similar to policy 8.39—DEPOSITING COLLECTED FUNDS. If you change this policy, review 8.39 at the same time to ensure consistency between the two.

 

1 ―Daily‖ is a suggested length of time that aligns with policy 7.7. You may select a different time period, but if you change it, be sure to change policy 7.7 to match.  The reason for this policy and the shorter timeline is to protect both the district and the teachers from possible overnight theft which is only covered by insurance if there are receipts to prove the existence of the funds and even then, there is a deductible (often $1000).  It could often be the case that the receipts and the funds would be in the same envelope and be stolen at the same time.  Bottom line is that the daily timeline is to protect both the district and the teacher.  

 

 

 

Date adopted:  July 1, 2011

Last Revised:  July 1, 2013 

3.48—LICENSED PERSONNEL WEAPONS ON CAMPUS

 

Firearms1

 

Except as permitted by this policy, no employee of this school district, including those who may possess a “concealed carry permit,” shall possess a firearm on any District school campus or in or upon any school bus or at a District designated bus stop.

 

Employees who meet one or more of the following conditions are permitted to bring a firearm onto school property.

·                  He/she is participating in a school-approved educational course or program involving the use of firearms such as ROTC programs, hunting safety or military education, or before or after-school hunting or rifle clubs;

·                  The firearms are securely stored and located in an employee’s on-campus personal residence and/or immediately adjacent parking area;2

·                  He/she is a registered, commissioned security guard acting in the course and scope of his/her duties.

 

Possession of a firearm by a school district employee anywhere on school property, including parking  areas and in or upon a school bus, will result in disciplinary action being taken against the employee, which may include termination or nonrenewal of the employee.

 

Other Weapons3

 

An employee may possess a pocket knife which for the purpose of this policy is defined as a knife that can be folded into a case and has a blade or blades of less than three (3) inches or less each. An employee may carry, for the purpose of self-defense, a small container of tear gas4 or mace which for the purpose of this policy is defined as having a capacity of 150cc or less.  Employees are expected to safeguard such items in such as way as to ensure they are not possessed by students.  Such items are not to be used against students, parents or other school district employees. Possession of  weapons,  knives or self-defense items that do not comply with the limits contained herein, the failure of an employee to safeguard such items, or the use of such items against students, parents or other school district employees may result in disciplinary action being taken against the employee, which may include termination or nonrenewal of the employee. 

 

 

 Notes:    This policy is similar to Policy 8.40. If you change this policy, review Policy 8.40 at the same time to                 ensure consistency between the two.

 

 1 The possession of handguns and firearms is a very hot topic. In Arkansas, the laws governing their possession on school grounds are both complicated and less than clear. The two statutes most directly affecting schools are A.C.A. § 5-73-119 (herein after 119) and A.C.A. § 5-73-306 (herein after 306).

 119 governs firearms (including handguns) while 306 deals strictly with concealed handguns (those guns having a barrel length of 12" or less). The conflicts between the two statutes and, we believe, the unintended consequences of the amendments to 119 need to be resolved in the 2015 legislative session. Until that time, we have to deal with the statutes as they exist.

 

The language of the two applicable statutes (119 and 306) governing guns on school campuses is not the same. 119 prohibits firearms on "developed school property" while 306 prohibits concealed handgun permit holders from carrying their handguns into school buildings or events. Even with the amendments contained in Act 746 of 2013, the broader definition of the restriction on gun possession on school campuses contained in 119 trumps the more narrow definition in 306. Hence, concealed handguns are forbidden under the broader definition of "developed school property." This prohibition even applies to concealed handgun permit holders who are registered commissioned security guards acting in the course and scope of his or her duties.

 

119 permits those who are on a "journey beyond the county in which a person lives" to carry handguns and firearms on school property. Technically, this would allow those employees who commute from outside the county in which they teach to bring their firearms to school. We see this as complicated to enforce and generally problematic. Also, as we interpret the statute, parents visiting the school for an athletic or other event can bring their firearms with them. We cannot control that through policy. District policy, however, can be more restrictive toward its employees than what is otherwise statutorily permitted. The policy is written from this perspective.

 

2 If your district has housing for any employee and that employee chooses to have any firearms  in the house, they should be kept in a very secure place. It would be wise to keep them in a locked gun safe so that no one other than the employee has access to them.

 

3 Select the option that works best for your district. In making your decision, note that in Option #2, you can choose to include only the first or the second sentence or you can keep both sentences. If you keep the first sentence, the length of the blade allowed is limited by Act 746 of 2013 to less than 3". Also, A.C.A. § 5-73-120(a) prohibits individuals from carrying a weapon "with a purpose to employ the…weapon against a person." Presumably, an employee could possess a small pocket knife with no intent to use it against another person. Inherent in making the decision on either sentence in Option #2 is the possibility of a student taking the knife or the tear gas and misusing it.

 

4 You can replace "tear gas" with "pepper spray" or leave "tear gas" in the policy and add "pepper spray."

 

 

 

Legal References:                   A.C.A. § 5-73-119

                                                    A.C.A. § 5-73-120

 

A.C.A. § 5-73-124(a)(2)

                                                    A.C.A. § 5-73-301

                                                    A.C.A. § 5-73-306

 

Date Adopted:

Last Revised: May 31, 2014

3.50—ADMINISTRATOR EVALUATOR CERTIFICATION

 

Continuing Administrators

The Superintendent or designee shall determine and notify in writing by August 31 of any current or prior contract year. those currently employed administrators who will be responsible for conducting Teacher Excellence Support System (hereinafter TESS) evaluations. All currently employed administrators so notified shall have until December 31 of the contract year to successfully complete all training and certification requirements for evaluators as set forth by the Arkansas Department of Education.  It shall constitute just and reasonable cause for nonrenewal of the contract of employment for any administrator  who is required to obtain and maintain TESS evaluator certification, as a term and condition of employment, to fail to do so by December 31 of any contract year.

 

Newly Hired or Promoted Administrators

All newly hired or newly promoted administrators, as a term and condition of their acceptance of their contract of employment for their administrative position, are required to obtain and maintain evaluator certification for TESS on or before December 31 of the initial administrative contract year, unless they are explicitly excused from such a contractual requirement by board action at the time of the hire or promotion. It shall constitute just and reasonable cause for nonrenewal of the contract of employment for any newly hired or newly promoted administrator  who is required to obtain and maintain TESS evaluator certification, as a term and condition of employment, to fail to do so by December 31 of any contract year.

 

 

 

 

Legal Reference:                     Arkansas Department Of Education Rules Governing The Teacher Excellence And Support System 4.05

 

 

Date Adopted:

Last Revised: May 31, 2014