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Eau Claire (WQOW) - With the removal of collective bargaining, school districts across Wisconsin have been seeing changes.
In the Eau Claire Area School District, one of those changes has to do with sick leave. Previously, if an employee ran out, they were eligible for an extended sick leave. In that case, most employees were given 30 additional days as long as they paid for their substitute. Now, the board is talking about a new method, one that relies on the generosity of other employees.
The proposal the board has been discussing is the idea that employees would donate their sick days to other colleagues in the district; it would be considered a district-wide sick leave bank.
This would be a formal process; any employee wishing to donate hours would need to submit their request to a board of district representatives. In order to take sick leave from the donation bank an employee would need to provide medical verification.
Kay Marks, the Executive Director of Human Resources for the school board says, "It's employees helping employees, it's not the district just opening up another thirty to forty days of leave and saying here you go, we'll pay you for another thirty to forty days. So it's not coming at the cost of the district to say, here's an additional on top of what you already have. It's days that have already been allocated to employees and it is just shifting from one employee to another based on their good natured generosity to be able to help out a colleague."
None of these changes will go into effect this year, they would start July 1, of the 2013- 14 school year.
Sick leave can be rolled over from year to year, up to 120 days. In other districts, employees may be able to cash out their unused sick leave when they retire. That's not a perk in the Eau Claire School District. The board could vote on the donation bank at its next meeting which is in August.
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