554R - Leave of Absence

    1. General
      Applications for leave of absence must be submitted to the board through the principal of the school wherein the applicant works. The principal will forward the official application to the superintendent, who will present it to the board for action on or before the regular March meeting. Applicants filing after March (for leave during the following school year) will be considered only in extraordinary circumstances.

      Applicants should request a leave of absence by submitting an official application to the board. The application must include the following:

      1. Reasons for the leave of absence.

      2. Duration of leave of absence.

      3. Confirmation of the employee's intention to return to work for the Frederick County Public Schools.

      If applicable, professional and classified personnel on leave of absence may continue, at their own expense, participation in the group health and life insurance plans, and they may retain their accumulated sick leave and membership in the sick leave bank.

    2. Return to Duty
      When an employee returns to regular full-time duty within the same school year, he/she shall return to his/her same position unless a change in personnel allotment or staff organization necessitates his/her assignment to another position at no reduction in pay.

      If an employee, following a leave of absence, returns at the beginning of the following school year, he/she shall be subject to assignment in the same manner as all other returning employees. The employee will not be guaranteed an assignment to the same position held prior to the leave of absence.

    3. Working While on Leave of Absence (LOA)
      Employees are allowed to work part-time for Frederick County Public Schools during their LOA. This includes being on the substitute employee list or in a part-time position.

      An employee who wishes to seek employment elsewhere while on LOA from Frederick County Public Schools must resign their position with Frederick County Public Schools and, thereby, end their LOA by leaving the employment of the school system. Employees who wish to receive consideration for a waiver of this requirement must submit a written request to human resources in writing.

    4. Specific Leave of Absence for Debilitating or Life-threatening Illness or Injury
      A leave of absence, without pay, may be granted to employees of the school division who:

      1. have a verified debilitating or life-threatening illness or injury;

      2. are not eligible for Family Medical Leave because they have not met eligibility requirements for leave under the Act; and,

      3. have no benefits available under another FCPS policy or regulation.

      The leave, including available paid and unpaid time off, may not exceed the greater of:

      1. any available paid leave under any FCPS policy or regulation to which the employee is entitled; or,

      2. sixty (60) work days.

      If, after beginning leave under this section of the regulation, the employee becomes eligible for leave under another FCPS policy or regulation, the provisions of that leave become effective. Under such circumstances, the employee may use the greater of the newly available leave or that which this section provides.

      Leave under this section may only be taken in full-day increments and may not be intermittent.

    5. Specific Leave of Absence for Debilitating or Life-threatening Illness or Injury (continued)
      Employees must submit medical documentation of their need for leave prior to leave being taken unless the reason for the leave does not allow doing so. Prior approval must be obtained before taking leave unless prior approval is not possible due to the illness or injury. In such cases, approval must be requested within five (5) days of the first day of absence due to the illness or injury.

      The doctor providing documentation of the need for this leave will need to provide release to full duty prior to the employee’s return to work.
      All rights under this section (Section E) expire at the end of the employee’s first year of service.


    Legal Reference(s):
    Code of Virginia, Section(s) 22.1-296 (C)


    Cross Reference(s):
    Regulation 554 - Appendix: Leave of Absence Adopted: April 7, 1970


    Amended: September 7, 1976
    Amended: March 15, 1982
    Amended: June 1, 1982
    Amended: August 1, 1991
    Amended: November 8, 2005
    Amended: June 14, 2006
    Amended: September 23, 2009
    Amended: July 3, 2018
    Amended: September 12, 2018