Sick Leave Benefits Frequently Asked Questions and Usage Guidelines

How many days of sick leave are available to employees?

  • 10 month employees earn 10 sick leave days each year of employment. Eleven month employees earn 11 days per year and twelve month employees earn 12 days per year.
  • This full complement of sick days is available for use at the beginning of the work year.
  • Unused sick days are carried over to the following school year.
  • There is no limit to the number of sick leave days that may be accrued.
  • Sick leave may be used in 1 hour, half day, or full day increments.

Under what circumstances can sick leave be used?

  • Sick days may be used for your own personal illness or appointments with a health care provider.
  • Sick days may be used to provide care for a family member who is ill and not able to care for themselves.  In this case, certification of medical necessity may be required.
  • Family members include a parent, child, sibling or partner. Sick leave may also be used to provide care to any member of the immediate household.

Is documentation always required to authenticate sick leave?

  • Not on every occasion. Teachers absent 4 or more consecutive days may be asked to submit a doctor’s note.  This allows the Benefits Office to determine if the leave qualifies for Family Medical Leave.
  • There are also occasions where the superintendent may request documentation of sick leave from a health care provider.  This may happen in cases where the reason for or the frequency of an absence is in question.

What happens if I exhaust all the sick leave in my account due to personal and/or family illness and I still have a legitimate need for additional leave?

  • If you have been employed with FCPS for 5 years or more, you may request that the Board consider granting 10 additional sick days.  These additional days are provided on an as needed basis to support your need for sick leave for your own illness or as you support a family member.  This request may be made once every 5 years.
  • Regarding your own personal illness, additional support to cover your absence due to a prolonged, catastrophic, incapacitating personal illness is available if you are a member of the FCTA, FASSE, or FCASA Sick Leave Bank. 
  • The Family Crisis Leave Exchange program is available to employees who have exhausted their sick, personal and annual leave and need additional leave to care for a member of their immediate family who is experiencing a prolonged, catastrophic incapacitating personal illness.

If I “dip forward” and access the leave I will earn during the school year and then go on an unpaid leave or actually resign from my position do I have to “pay back” the leave I used but didn’t actually earn? 

  • Yes.  Unearned leave does have to be paid back to the school system.  This pay back could be in the form of a deduction on your last paycheck or some other repayment program authorized by the Finance Department.

Where in the Negotiated Agreement can I find more information about sick leave benefits for teachers?

  • Article XXIV  Sick Leave
  • Article XXV  Sick Leave Bank
  • Article XXVI FCPS-FCTA Family Crisis Leave Exchange

Where in the Negotiated Agreement can I find more information about sick leave benefits for support employees?

  • Article VI Leave Provisions 6.2a Sick Leave
  • Article VI Leave Provisions 6.2b Sick Leave Bank
  • Article VI Leave Provisions 6.2a Sick leave
  • Article VI Leave Provisions 6.6 Family Crisis Leave Exchange

Where in the Negotiated Agreement can I find more information about sick leave benefits for A&S and AMT employees?

  • ARTICLE VIII – LEAVE BENEFITS Section 8.2 – Sick Leave
  • ARTICLE VIII – LEAVE BENEFITS Section 8.10 – Family Crisis Leave Exchange (FCLE)BOE Policy 319
  • ADMINISTRATIVE, MANAGEMENT AND TECHNICAL (AMT) GROUP Benefits 319.2

Source: Human Resources, October 2017