Board of education considers establishing sick leave bank policy
The Carbon County Board of Education is considering adopting a policy providing classified employees with the opportunity to have a sick leave bank started in the next year.
The program would allow classified employees with a catastrophic illness to draw from a donated bank after they have used all their sick leave days.
The adoption of the policy came up during the regularly scheduled board meeting on Sept. 13.
Superintendent David Armstrong said the policy he presented to the board was a conglomeration of a number of programs he had examined from different school districts.
The other policy items had to do with hiring requirements and restrictions along with fundraising activities, which were slated for second readings by the board.
"The policy you have before you is very near to the one that Nebo School District has in place," explained Armstrong. "We thought this would be a good thing to have for classified employees who do not have any kind catastrophic illness sick leave coverage."
Classified employees in the school district include custodians, maintenance workers, secretaries and food service personnel .
Sick leave banks in public and higher education are not a unique concept. But the programs vary.
As board members asked questions, a number of issues surfaced at the meeting that are covered in the proposal or will have to be addressed.
One concern was for employees who have a lot of sick leave saved compared to others who have used all they could have accumulated.
The policy provides for the differences with a formula that says a 30-day wait period with no pay would be extended for those that have no sick leave a accumulated. It is a graduated formula that tops out with employees who have accumulated 30 days or more. Those employees would have no waiting period if they exhausted their accumulated sick leave.
The bank would be voluntary with employees donating one day per year. The bank would maintain a minimum of 200 days in it. Days would also be drawn from employees who terminate their employment.
Only employees who work more than 20 hours per week would be eligible to join the bank. Anyone who joins must also have completed 12 months of employment with the district.
Employees could not accrue personal, sick leave or vacation days while using the sick leave bank days. And if an employee faces an illness that extends past 180 calendar days, they would have to transition to the long term disability program the district has.
The proposed bank would be managed by a committee from the Carbon Classified Professional Association.
The reading of the policy was only the first reading by the board and they will have two more readings in subsequent meetings before they either vote to approve or disapprove the policy.
In another action the board voted to rescind approval of the administrative salary schedule they recently approved because of some problems with it.
"I just think we need to pull back on this and study it a little more," said board president Grady McEvoy before the vote. "There are some problems with equivalency in the schedule."
At present, McEvoy said, there are discrepancies in pay relating to duties of various administrators compared to one another. In addition there were also questions about both the amount of time a person who becomes an administrator has with the district and how the various sizes of schools should relate to the pay a principal gets.
"Years ago the district standardized principal salaries so when a schools size changed they weren't penalized," said Armstrong.
The board decided to form a committee to study the schedule and will have field administrators on it as well as district office personnel.