FACULTY/STAFF POLICY & PROCEDURE MANUAL

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5.11. Leaves


5.11.1 Board of Supervisors Policy

5.11.2 University Policy Concerning Personal Leaves

5.11.3 Leave and Leave Records

5.11.4 Leave for Civil and National Service

5.11.5 Military Leave

5.11.6 Sick Leave

5.11.7 Other Leave

5.11.7.1 Workers’ Compensation Payments

5.11.7.2 Temporary Appointment

5.11.7.3 Political Campaigns

5.11.7.4 Bereavement

5.11.7.5 Family and Medical Leave

5.11.7.6 Holiday Leave

5.11.7.7 Leave without Pay

5.11.7.8 Compensatory Time (Comp Time)

5.11.7.9 Flextime Schedules Policy

5.11.7.10 Emergency Absences

5.11.7.11 Educational Leave Policy

5.11.1 Board of Supervisors Policy

Chapter III, Section V and XXI of the Rules for the Board of Supervisors for the University of Louisiana System stipulates the following regarding leaves of absence for faculty/staff members:

  • Leaves of absence, other than for military leave, shall not exceed one year.
  • Faculty/staff on military leave (or special leave for war–connected service) from the institutions shall be re–employed by the institution at the beginning of the next semester (or quarter) after the date on which the institution head shall receive written notification that such person wishes to return to his or her position, provided that such notification shall be given within 40 days after honorable discharge from the armed forces.
  • Leave without pay may be granted for a maximum of one year at a time upon recommendation of the institution to the System President and with the approval of the Board.

Chapter III, Section XXI of the Rules also gives provisions for faculty/staff leave, annual leave, sick leave, and compensatory leave.

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5.11.2 University Policy Concerning Personal Leaves

Ranked faculty and staff must receive written permission of their Department Head or appropriate supervisor prior to taking leave unless absences are not anticipated. Unanticipated absences shall be reported to the Department Head or supervisor as soon as possible. Department Heads or supervisors are required to forward to the Department of Human Resources all approved requests for leave. The Personnel Office shall keep cumulative records of all personal leaves requested and used. For the purpose of policies dealing with leave, the term “day” shall mean any working day during which a faculty or staff member is employed by contract. Academic faculty and staff employed on fiscal year appointments are eligible for annual leave as defined and explained in relevant administrative policies.

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5.11.3 Leave and Leave Records

As provided by Louisiana Revised Statutes 17:3311 and Board of Supervisors Bylaws, “For the purposes of leave, appointing authorities shall establish work weeks of 40 hours per week for full–time employees. The purpose of establishing the 40–hour week is to provide appointing authorities a system for accounting for and the taking of leave. It is understood that some faculty work is done outside the office such as the library and laboratories as well as off–campus sites.”

The above provision has been clarified (March, 1991) by the Board of Supervisors as follows:

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“Neither the Act or the Board of Supervisors rule defines work schedule and work site. The purpose of the Act and the Rule is to ensure the reporting and accounting for sick leave. An employee’s work schedule and work site are determined by the employee’s supervisor. Thus, if it is determined that it is necessary for an employee to be physically present at his or her work site, the university may so require.

“Furthermore, both the Act and the Rule are limited to ‘academic teaching personnel.’ Therefore, the individuals holding academic rank who by virtue of their position with the university have other non–teaching responsibilities may be required to be physically present at their work station.”

Daily attendance and leave records are maintained for all unclassified employees. At Nicholls State University, the completed forms are forwarded to the Department of Human Resources for recording.

Annual leave is leave with pay granted to a 12–month employee for the purpose of rehabilitation, restoration, maintenance of work efficiency, or attention to other personal concerns. However, annual leave will be restricted during the academic year.

Annual leave is earned by each eligible unclassified employee employed on a twelve–month basis who has a regular tour of duty. The earning of annual leave is based on the equivalent of years of full–time State service and shall be creditable at the end of each pay period or calendar month in accordance with the following general schedule:

  • Less than three years of equivalent State service shall be compensated at the rate of one day of annual leave per month of full–time service, or the equivalent thereof in hours.
  • Three years, but less than five years, of State service shall be compensated at the rate of one and one–fourth days of annual leave per month of full–time service, or the equivalent thereof in hours.
  • Five years, but less than ten years, of State service shall be compensated at the rate of one and one–half days of annual leave per month of full–time service, or the equivalent thereof in hours.
  • Ten years, but less than 15 years of State service shall be compensated at the rate of one and three–fourth days of annual leave per month of full–time service, or the equivalent thereof in hours.
  • Fifteen or more years of State service shall be compensated at the rate of two days of annual leave per month of full–time service, or the equivalent thereof in hours.
  • No 12–month unclassified employee shall be credited with annual leave for any calendar month
    • until he or she has completed the calendar month in which he or she was employed.
    • during which he or she has been on leave without pay for ten or more working days
    • while serving in the military.
    • Accrued unused annual leave earned by an employee shall be carried forward to the succeeding years without limitation.
    • When an employee changes position from one state agency to another, the accumulated annual leave shall be forwarded to the new agency and shall be credited to the employee.
    • Legal holidays, state–designated holidays, days of local conditions and celebrations, and similar periods when designated, announced, and observed by the institution, shall not be charged to annual leave.
    • Annual leave shall be applied for in advance by the employee and may be taken only when approved by the appointing authority. Requirements concerning the use of annual leave include the following:
      • An appointing authority may require an employee who has sufficient credited annual leave to take annual leave whenever the authority feels that it is best for the employee or the appointing authority.
      • Except when given special advance approval for absence from duty, an employee must be at the work station for the day in order to be classified as on duty. A work station normally will be one’s office or elsewhere on the employer’s premises, or at other locations while representing the employer.
      • Upon resignation, death, removal, or other termination of employment of an unclassified employee, annual leave amounting to the same maximum as is provided for members of the classified service of the state by the Civil Service Commission and approved by the Governor, and accrued to the employee’s credit shall be computed and the value thereof shall be paid to the employee or the heirs, provided that the annual leave has been accrued under established leave regulations and attendance records have been maintained for the employee by the superior. Such pay shall be computed at the employee’s base rate of pay at the time of termination.

Except for cases of emergency approved by the President and the Board of Supervisors, the use of annual leave/compensatory leave shall be limited to a 30–day continuous period.

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5.11.4 Leave for Civil and National Service

Leaves for civil and national service are granted without loss of pay, annual leave or sick leave when

  • performing jury duty;
  • summoned to appear as a witness before a court, grand jury, or other public body or commission;
  • performing emergency civilian duty in relation to national defense;
  • the appointing authority determines that he or she is prevented by an act of God from performing duty;
  • voting in a primary, general, or special election which falls on a scheduled working day, provided that not more than two hours of leave shall be allowed an employee to vote in the parish where employed, and not more than one day to vote in a parish other than the one where employed.

The appointing authority shall determine when local conditions or celebrations make it impracticable for hi/her employees to work.

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5.11.5 Military Leave

The Board of Supervisors allows leaves of absence to employees who are members of a reserve component of the armed forces of the United States or the National Guard. These leaves are granted without loss of pay, time, or annual or sick leave when individuals are “ordered to active duty for field training or training authorized in lieu thereof when the individual is given constructive credit for such training” Such leaves shall be for periods not to exceed 15 working days in any calendar year, but an appointing authority may grant an employee annual leave or leave without pay or both, in accordance with provisions of these leave regulations for such periods which exceed 15 working days in any calendar year.

Employees who are inducted or ordered to active duty to fulfill reserve obligations or who are ordered to active duty in connection with activities in indefinite periods or for periods in excess of their annual field training shall be ineligible for leave with pay.

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5.11.6 Sick Leave

As provided by Louisiana Revised Statutes 17:3311 and Board of Supervisors Bylaws, for the purposes of leave, has established a workweek of 40 hours for full–time employees.

Sick leave is leave with pay granted an employee who is suffering with a disability which prevents him from performing his or her usual duties and responsibilities and who requires medical, dental or optical consultation or treatment.

Sick leave shall be earned by each employee who has a regular tour of duty. The earning of such leave shall be based on the equivalent of years of full–time State service and shall be creditable at the end of each calendar month in accordance with the following general schedule:

  • Less than three years of service shall be credited with sick leave at the rate of one day of sick leave per month, or the equivalent thereof in hours.
  • Three years, but less than five years, of State service shall be credited with sick leave at the rate of one and one–fourth days of sick leave per month of full–time service, or the equivalent thereof in hours.
  • Five years, but less than ten years, of State service shall be credited with sick leave at the rate of one and one–half days of sick leave per month of full–time service, or the equivalent thereof in hours.
  • Ten years, but less than 15 years of State service shall be credited with sick leave at the rate of one and three–fourth days of sick leave per month of full–time service, or the equivalent thereof in hours.
  • Fifteen or more years of State service shall be credited with sick leave at the rate of two days of sick leave per month of full–time service, or the equivalent thereof in hours.

No unclassified employee shall be credited with sick leave for any calendar month

  • until he or she has completed the calendar month in which employed (For example, a faculty member employed for nine weeks in the summer shall be credited with two and one–fourth days.)
  • during which he or she has been on leave without pay for ten or more working days
  • while serving in the military.

Accrued unused sick leave earned by an employee shall be carried forward to the succeeding years without limitation.

When an employee changes position from one state agency to another, accumulated sick leave shall be forwarded to the new agency and shall be credited.

Sick leave with pay may be taken by an employee with sufficient credited leave for the following:

  • Illness or injury which prevents performance of work duties.
  • Medical, dental, or optical consultation or treatment.

Sick leave should be applied for in advance for routine medical visits and exams. An employee may be required to furnish an excuse signed by a healthcare professional when applying for sick leave approval, at the discretion of the supervisor. In the event of excessive absenteeism, the appointing authority may require that for each absence, regardless of the number of days absent, the employee produce an excuse signed by a healthcare professional upon returning to work. Supervisors are responsible for administering this policy. Any excuse, if required, must be submitted along with the appropriate timesheet(s).

The minimum charge for sick leave shall be one–quarter hour. The minimum charge for annual leave shall be one–quarter hour.

The employee may use sick leave for maternity purposes when her postnatal or prenatal condition prevents the performance of usual duties, provided the employee has sufficient sick leave credit. The limit to the use of sick leave for a postnatal condition shall be six weeks unless a physician certifies the employee’s inability to return to work.

Upon death or retirement of an unclassified employee, sick leave accrued shall be computed and the value thereof shall be paid to the employee or heirs, provided that the sick leave has been accrued under established leave regulations and a daily attendance record has been maintained for the employee by the supervisor, except that such payment shall not exceed the value of 25 working days computed on the basis of a five–day week and on a four–week per month basis for personnel employed on less than the 12–month employment basis and on the basis of a five–day week and 52–week year for 12–month employees. The rate of pay shall be computed using the base rate the employee is receiving at the time of termination.

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5.11.7 Other Leave

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5.11.7.1 Workers’ Compensation Payments

When employees are absent from work owing to disabilities for which they are entitled to Workers’ Compensation, they may, at their option, use sick or annual leave or any appropriate combination of sick and annual leave (not to exceed the amount necessary) to receive a total payment for leave and Workers’ Compensation in accordance with law.

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5.11.7.2 Temporary Appointment

Leaves of absence without pay for the purpose of accepting a temporary appointment elsewhere shall not exceed one year. These appointments must be in the best interest of the University.

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5.11.7.3 Political Campaigns

Leaves without pay granted for the purpose of participation in a political campaign shall not exceed six months.

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5.11.7.4 Bereavement

Probationary or permanent employees may be given time off without loss of pay, annual leave, or sick leave when attending the funeral or burial rites of a parent, step–parent, child, step–child, brother, step–brother, sister, step–sister, spouse, mother–in–law, father–in–law, grandparent, step–grandparent, or grandchild provided such time off shall not exceed two days on any one occasion.

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5.11.7.5 Family and Medical Leave

The Family and Medical Leave Act of 1993 provides that the University grant an employee a total of twelve (12) weeks of unpaid leave (or applicable paid leave) in any 12–month period 1) to care for a newborn son or daughter; 2) for the placement of a son or daughter with the employee for adoption or foster care; 3) to care for a seriously ill spouse, child, or parent; 4) because of the employee’s own serious health condition. (See also Section 5.11.7.7)

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5.11.7.6 Holiday Leave

Holidays are established by the University and published in the annual academic calendar. No requests are necessary.

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5.11.7.7 Leave without Pay

Tenure and probationary contract faculty and staff may request leave without pay for a period not to exceed one (1) academic year. Authority to grant leaves without pay rests with the President with approval from the Board of Supervisors. Subject to Board of Supervisors approval, an extension of up to one additional academic year may be granted by the President upon recommendation of the administrative Vice President. All faculty leave without pay requests must be approved by the Vice President for Academic Affairs, Department Head and Dean.

It is important to note that time spent on leave without pay shall not count toward progress to tenure contract, promotion, or sabbatical leave. Faculty seeking leave without pay will be advised of this stipulation and will be asked to agree in writing. Faculty members on leave without pay shall not be eligible for promotion during the period of the leave and shall not, unless agreed to in writing prior to the commencement of such leave, be entitled to fringe benefits.

By special arrangements with the Controller’s Office faculty and staff members may continue those fringe benefits for which they are eligible at their own cost.

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5.11.7.8 Compensatory Time (Comp Time)

Nine–month employees are not eligible for compensatory leave (leave granted to employees for work during official closure of the University). In all other cases, Comp Time shall be earned and taken in accord with rules adopted by the Board of Supervisors.

The compensatory leave policy for unclassified professional staff (effective July 1, 1999) shall be as follows:

  • Compensatory leave may be granted for overtime hours worked outside the regularly assigned 40-hour work week, or when the employee has not worked in excess of 40 hours due to holidays observed or leave taken.
  • Earning of compensatory leave must have prior approval of the immediate supervisor and the appropriate vice president or president.
  • The amount of compensatory leave time earned shall equal the number of extra hours the employee is required to work (hour for hour).
  • Compensatory leave shall not be earned by the following employees: presidents, vice presidents, deans, athletic directors, and athletic coaches. Exceptions may be made to permit these employees to be exempted from having to take leave when the university is officially closed. Such exceptions shall be included in the appointment letter of the individuals involved. In all events, any employee who is entitled to earn compensatory leave under the Fair Labor Standards Act shall earn such leave in accordance with Civil Service Rules and Regulations.
  • Compensatory leave shall be promptly credited to the employee and may be used with the approval of the immediate supervisor and the appropriate vice president or president. Not more than 240 hours of accrued unused leave shall be carried forward into any fiscal year.
  • An appointing authority may require employees to use their earned compensatory leave at any time.
  • Employees will not be paid the value of their accrued compensatory leave upon separation from their unclassified position.
  • In the event that an employee transfers without a break in service to another position within the State service, compensatory leave may be credited to the employee at the discretion of the new appointing authority. Compensatory leave shall be terminated when an employee separates from State service.
  • Compensatory leave should not be confused with flex time, employees cannot arbitrarily determine their own work schedules, and work undertaken while at home does not constitute the earning of compensatory time. Granting the use of compensatory leave does not preclude the assignment of employees to perform those services which cannot be dispensed with on the days the University is closed or when it may be disruptive to the normal operation of the unit; in such cases, supervisors will make necessary arrangements for employees to be on duty.

For proper administration of this comp time policy the following procedures will apply.

  1. Prior to earning compensatory leave employees must complete the “Application To Earn Compensatory Leave Form (CLl)” which shall be signed by the immediate supervisor and the appropriate vice president or president. Once completed this form must be attached to the corresponding time sheet in which the leave was earned and submitted to the Department of Human Resources.
  2. To use compensatory leave employees must complete the “Nicholls State University Request For Leave Form” which shall be signed by the immediate supervisor and the appropriate vice president or president.
  3. Employees will not earn compensatory leave while on “on call” status. However, if the employee is called back to work, that time shall be considered compensatory time.
  4. Employees while on approved official travel on a regular University work day can earn a maximum of five (5) hours of compensatory leave for time worked outside the normal work hours. During approved weekend official travel, an employee can earn a maximum of eight (8) hours per day.
  5. Compensatory leave will automatically be charged for designated University closings. Employees who do not have enough compensatory leave earned will be charged annual leave in lieu of compensatory leave. Employees whose compensatory and/or annual leave balances are not sufficient will be charged leave without pay Exceptions to this procedure are presidents, vice presidents, deans, athletic directors, and athletic coaches. These employees will be exempted from having to take leave when the university is officially closed.

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5.11.7.9 Flextime Schedules Policy

The University’s regular office hours are 8:00 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Monday through Friday.  However, the operation of classes normally runs from 7:30 a.m. to 9:00 p.m.  Flextime schedules are used to provide the greatest service opportunities to the University’s customers while trying to maximize the use of its limited resources.

However, some campus departments may have official office hours that differ from the University’s regular business/office hours in order to provide appropriate service to their clientele.  This may include departments with multiple shifts.  Departments are encouraged to consider flexible schedules when it is in the best interest of the University in providing services to students.  Nicholls State University also recognizes that flexible schedules can improve morale and productivity and recognizes the contributions made before and after normal work hours. Flextime is a work schedule which equals to 40 hours per week but has different beginning and ending times from the University’s regular business hours.  A flextime schedule is appropriate only when the work schedule is beneficial to the University and the individual.  Working a flexible schedule is a privilege—not an employee right—and flexible schedules are not appropriate for all job situations.

When developing a flextime schedule for any department or employee, the following guidelines should be used:

A. Service:

Normally, flextime provides a wider span of service and provides staff with an opportunity to modify their work schedules to fit individual and/or departmental needs.  The level of service provided by the department to their customer must not decrease.  The department head must consider the workload, flow of work, impact on quality and schedules as they relate to the mission and objectives of that department when considering the possibility of Flextime Schedules.

B. Coverage:

The implementation of a flextime schedule is contingent upon assuring at least minimal coverage during the normal business hours.  Supervisors/department heads should design flexible work schedules so that adequate supervision is provided.  Non-supervisory employees shall not be without supervision for long periods of time on a regular basis.  Supervisors/appropriate supervision should be present for each alternative schedule option.

C. Cross Training:

The department using flextime must take appropriate actions to ensure proper cross training/backup assignments in order to maintain normal levels of service for the duration of the normal operating hours of the office.

D. Policy Compliance:

Flextime schedules must be implemented in accordance with applicable University, State and Federal policies and regulations.  Flextime Schedules are not intended to alter the basic understanding that full-time staff employees are expected to work 40 hours per week, which include appropriate lunch periods. Flextime schedules do not change normal attendance requirements.

E. Approval of Flex Schedules:

The department head/director may approve flextime schedules.  A lunch period of at least one hour must be included.  Departments should document each employee’s flextime schedule in writing using the “Request for Flextime Schedule” form signed by the employee, supervisor, and department head/director with a copy provided to the departmental timekeeper and the Human Resources Office to ensure legal and administrative compliance and to maintain work schedule records.  The Department of Human Resources will provide copies of the approved request to the Payroll Department and the appropriate Vice President.  Employees must follow the established schedule or be placed on leave or leave without pay when not at work.  No additional approvals beyond the department head are required.

It is the responsibility of the department to ensure that the Flextime Schedule Policy is administered in an equitable and consistent manner.  Failure to do so may result in termination of the use of flextime schedules within that department.

F. Administration:

When a department is creating/filling a position, flextime schedules must be listed on the “Request for Authorization to Begin Process for Filling Position” (R-1) form since this may impact the applicant pool.

Flextime is intended for long-term change in schedules (60 days or more) and not intended to permit swapping hours/days or as a mechanism to adjust for missed hours during the day or week.

Temporary or short-term flextime schedules may be permitted to facilitate class attendance or accommodate ADA or FMLA requests.

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5.11.7.10 Emergency Absences

At the discretion of the appointing authority, a full–time faculty or staff member may be granted leave with pay to attend to personal emergencies. Such time may be charged against sick leave. In the event of an emergency, the absent faculty or staff member is responsible for notifying the Department Head or appropriate supervisor immediately. Emergency absence requires the Department Head or appropriate supervisor to cover the absentee’s classes in the most appropriate manner possible.

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5.11.7.11 Educational Leave Policy

Nicholls State University’s purpose is to distinguish itself as an institution of the highest quality in higher education.  As such, it also encourages the academic growth and development of its employees by providing them with the opportunity to complete one academic course a semester during their regular work hours.  Complying with the following conditions and procedures will allow the employees of Nicholls State University the opportunity to continue their education.

With supervisor approval, an employee may be granted educational leave with pay during his or her regular work hours to take one class per academic session. In certain circumstances, a request for educational leave may not be approved by the supervisor due to departmental workload requirements, scheduling conflicts, etc. This policy does not allow educational leave for programs such as the Nicholls Europe program, or study programs abroad.  Employees must apply for annual leave, compensatory leave, or leave without pay for any additional classes taken during their regular work hours.  Such leave will be granted only when it is not disruptive to the normal operation of the department or unit.

Classes taken that fall within the “one class per academic session” must be job related.  The University recognizes that an employee working toward a degree, and having a degree plan on file with the University, will be considered to be taking courses that are job related in accordance with the goals and objectives of higher education when these courses apply to the degree program on file.

An employee will be allowed to adjust his/her lunch hour with supervisor approval when an approved class per this policy is scheduled during the normal lunch hour.

Employees will not be allowed to change either their work schedules or their lunch hours for the purpose of taking courses in addition to the “one class per academic session” during their regular work hours.  An employee who wishes to take an additional course that falls entirely within his or her normal lunch hour, with no overlap into his or her work hours, will be allowed to do so.  Unless otherwise noted and for the purpose of this policy, an employee’s lunch period of one hour may be moved to fall between the hours of 11:30AM to 1:30PM for the purpose of taking an additional class; thus, with supervisor approval, the lunch hour of an individual may fall anywhere within this time period.  (Note: the lunch hour is composed of one half hour without pay, and two 15-minute break periods with pay.)  When an employee chooses to take a class during this hour, he or she is not entitled to any breaks or additional lunch time during the day.

Courses taken before and after normal work hours are not affected by this policy.

Employees working outside of normal work hours (8:00 AM – 4:30 PM) will be reviewed on a case by case basis.

Leave without pay for educational purposes may be granted to an employee for a period equivalent to the period of enrollment in the course or degree program, provided that it is in accordance with established agency policy.

Educational leave requests must be submitted on the Educational Leave Form (available on the internal administrators’ drive, V drive, in the policy and procedure forms folder) and must be approved prior to taking the leave.  Part II of the Educational Leave Form must be submitted to the Office of Human Resources upon completion of the class.

In addition to employee participation in educational leave, additional training may be attained by employee participation at conferences or meetings relating to an employee’s work or office functions.  These are not formally requested on the Educational Leave Form.  Verification of these trainings should be provided to Human Resources for inclusion in the employee’s personnel record.  Also, participation of an employee in agency-sponsored or mandatory training is made a part of each participant’s personnel record.

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