Wednesday, June 11, 2014

The Cumulative Absence Reserve.



























Every school year educators get 10 days of paid "sick leave', credited on the 16th of every month during the school year (September to June).  On that day a sick day is added to the educator's Cumulative Absence Reserve (CAR).  Of the 10 days, up to 3 can be used as a "personal day".  However,the educator must receive prior approval from the Principal.

Contrary to what you may have heard, the teacher does not need to supply a medical note to take a "self-treated" sick day.  Even if its ten consecutive days!  However, if the teacher is caught using the time by taking a vacation or working another job, expect the DOE to file "theft of service" charges and seek termination under section 3020-a.

Teachers who exhaust their CAR days can borrow up to 20 sick days from the DOE for legitimate illnesses.  Beyond that, the teacher can take unpaid leave either through the Family Medical Leave Act or approved disability.  The maximum sick leave that a teacher can accumulate is 200 days.  Teachers who exceed the 200 day limit must use the extra sick days by the end of the school year or lose them.

Educators can donate unused sick days to a ill colleague on a two for one basis.  For every day given to a colleague, the donor loses two days in his or her CAR balance.  Educators can only donate days if the teacher has at least 50 days or no more than 180 days in his CAR.  For appointed teachers who are absent 20 consecutive days without notifying the DOE, the DOE will  assume that the teacher has resigned.  For ATRs, the new contract's special rules that will start in the 2014-15 school year will allow only two consecutive days for an ATR to not show up to the school and  since the ATR is absent without notification  the DOE will assume that the ATR resigned.

On occasion an appointed teacher who takes more than 10 days an, be rated either "Satisfactory" or "unsatisfactory due to attendance" by the Principal.  However, for ATRs, special rules already apply and if the ATR exceeds 10 days, the ATR will be automatically rated "unsatisfactory" by the field supervisor, regardless how many days the ATR has in the CAR.

For educators who retire the DOE will pay the retiree, 1 day for every 2 days of unused sick leave.and will distribute the payouts in three checks, usually every six months.  However, if the teacher decides to try out retirement , he or she can take terminal leave where the DOE will pay the teacher a day's pay as if the teacher is still an active member, for every two days in the CAR.  However, the payment ends when either the CAR balance is zero, or when the semester ends.  The remaining CAR balance will be paid out with a check.  If the teacher decides to unretire and still has CAR days in the bank, then the teacher must notify the DOE that he or she is coming back and must do it before January or June, depending which semester the teacher started the terminal leave.

For coaches, summer school teachers and other selected school activities  additional sick days are credited to the CAR for working in those and other programs after the school day or year.

23 comments:

Anonymous said...

Why are principals throughout NYC giving teachers letters to file for abuse of sick days, when a teacher has only taken 5 or so days? Is this allowable (actually I guess any things allowable). I received a letter to file 1 week ago as I had "at least" 5 days taken off for sick days. All other teachers who called out sick at least 5 days got letters to file too. Is this a grievance?

Anonymous said...

I believe you are incorrect on one matter. I think you need a doctor's note for over three consecutive days.
I am an ATR and was told by my supervisor that I would get a U if I was out ten days. I told her that we were entitled to those days. She didn't even answer me .

Anonymous said...

Didn't the uft win an arbitration allowing 3 consecutive days without a doctor's note?

Anonymous said...

10 consecutive self treated with no note IS allowed. More than 10 days need a doctor's note.

Anonymous said...

You do not need a sick note even if you are out 10 consecutive days. That is a myth. It has been posted on the uft site and many credible online sources.

Anonymous said...

It depends on your school. Last year I took 8 days and was called into a time and attendance meeting. Nothing happened as a result and I didn't take any days off as a result. A colleague of mine who was legitimately sick and took 10 days total got a letter in the file.

I remember one woman who was untenured and took well over the 10 days got unsatisfactory, then hired a lawyer and got it reversed as long as she was transferred. Seems that's the way to go.

This year I've taken a total of 4 days and haven't heard anything.

Anonymous said...

My field supervisor had shown up at one of my schools to inform me that I had been absent quite a bit and needed to have documentation or I would receive a U rating. She, like many, have no concept of what is right or wrong, nor do they care.

Anonymous said...

At Bronx hs for law and community service (Kennedy campus), the principal (Barakat) announced at the first faculty meeting in September, that any teacher absent more than 5 days would automatically receive a Ineffective for the year. The young staff doesn't know their rights and everyone there is a nervous wreck.

Anonymous said...

Meant Roosevelt campus. Don't work there.

Anonymous said...

As a long time NYC teacher, it really shocks me how many teachers have hardly any days in their CAR. I do my best to come in every day and I have close to a hundred days in my CAR. All it takes is a slip on the ice or a car accident and most teachers are going to be in a world of hurt. (pun intended) Having a CAR is one of the last decent things left in our contract and I think folks should see the importance of it.

Anonymous said...

Nice you have so many days Anonymous 5:24 but as a single mother most of my days were used to take care of my child when she was sick or to attend school functions. Very few were used for my own benefit. Don't be so smug.

Bronx ATR said...

All the schools are scurrying like mice to hire for next year. No ATR I know who has gone on an interview has gotten a position. One close friend (17 year teacher) said he gave the best interview of his life, showed the committee his published articles and was told they "loved him and would be contacting him in a day or two for a 10 minute demo". After a few days he called and was told they chose someone else. He has an acquaintance in the school who told him they picked a person right out of college with no experience. Thus will be the experience of 99% of any ATR who goes on an interview.
Today (Friday, June 13th) hundreds of excellent teachers will be excessed and become ATRs. Thank you Mr. Mulgrew for pushing through such a "Historic Contract"; you (shop teacher) would be an ATR right now if you weren't head of our pathetic union.

Anonymous said...

Any principal who gives a member of staff a letter for just taking off a few days should rot in hell and burn.

Anonymous said...

Bronx ATR
Your post is right on but I am not sure why this is the case. I mean, principals were told that you can hire an experienced educator and the cost of the larger salary would be picked up by central. We need to rid these pathetic bloomberg academy principals out of the system...they are the ones still carrying out =bloombergs brain washing scams....We need Farina to rid the system of these filthy, low life scum dirt bag so called principals (excuse me leadership team) and throw them out of here - that would be nice as principals have no tenure....I have friends and family here in NY who are police and fire man and they are laughing hysterically at how much our profession has deteriorated under the low life organizations such as our union and the city. The kids/students really are the ones who are losing out here people...contrary to belief, it truly is NOT students first but rather show me the money honey. The dollar rules once again....Why not pay a stupid teacher out of city college cause its cheap rather than an experienced teacher who has had papers published, etc...lol..cant make it up as they say....oh well money root to evil

Anonymous said...

Hey Anon 6:14, I was not being smug about having close to 100 days in my CAR. All I am saying is that I do what I need to do to try and come in to school as much as I can. (Keep fit and healthy, go to bed at a reasonable hour, etc) I was not trying to be smug. Oh yeah, I don't have any kids and I don't plan on having any. Having kids is a choice and if folks gotta use days from their CAR for that, then that is the way it goes. We are fortunate to have a CAR in the first place and the point is that we should be happy that we have that one decent aspect of our contract still in effect.

retired teacher said...

Here's something that new teachers may not know. If you see a doctor and come in with a note, the day comes out of your CAR and you don't lose a self treated day.

Incidentally, the HIPAA law says that you are not required to state the kind of illness you have - your records are confidential between you and your physician.

All an employer is entitled to, by Federal law, is a note saying you were under treatment and may return to school. Of course you may tell your principal or supervisor the nature of your medical issue if you so choose.

Chaz said...

Retired teacher:

I'm not sure your interpretation is correct. I did hear of a case where the teacher came in with doctor's notes for five days but received a "U rating" for taking 12 days off that year.

Chaz said...

Retired teacher:

I'm not sure your interpretation is correct. I did hear of a case where the teacher came in with doctor's notes for five days but received a "U rating" for taking 12 days off that year.

Anonymous said...

Check out this outdated document here: http://schools.nyc.gov/NR/rdonlyres/7E50C743-72E1-4BDC-8F40-E8DDED86570A/0/LaborFAQs200742407.pdf

"Q: Can I require that a teacher provide a doctor’s note for any or all of the self -treated sick days?

A: Normally no, that is why these days are called “self-treated” days. However you may require a note if (1) ... (2) the employee is absent for more than 3 consecutive days."

retired teacher said...

Chaz - I didn't mean to imply that the days with notes won't count. If a teacher took off seven days self treated and had five with a note that is still 12 absences. It's just a bookkeeping tool.

Unfortunately there are rat-turd principals willing to use anything to rate a teacher unsatisfactory.

I know of of a situation where a teacher's parent died in another state. The teacher was out a week and the principal used the "absences" to give a "U" rating and dock the teacher five days pay. The reality is that attendance at a funeral is non-attendance and should not be used against the teacher. Again it was another Leadership Academy genius doing the DOE's dirtywork. The teacher grieved and got the letter vacated and the sick days restored. Later that year, after winning the grievance, she got a nice job in a Nassau County school. Case closed.

Chaz said...

Anon 1:42

You're right, the document is no longer valid. The UFT won a grievance and you can take ten consecutive self-treated sick days consecutively without a doctor's note.

Chaz said...

Anon 12:37

Your field supervisor is wrong! Even with the new ATR rules, an ATR can take up to 10 days without a doctor's note.

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