Policy 1338
Faculty Leave

Date of Current Revision: December 2017
Primary Responsible Officer: Director of Human Resources

1. PURPOSE

This policy provides a uniform method for faculty members to take leave from work.

2. AUTHORITY

The Board of Visitors has been authorized by the Commonwealth of Virginia to govern James Madison University. See Code of Virginia § 23.1-1600; § 23.1-1301. The Board has delegated the authority to manage the university to the president.

3. DEFINITIONS

10-month Instructional Faculty
Instructional faculty who are employed on the standard academic year faculty contract.

12-month Instructional Faculty
Instructional faculty members who are not employed on the standard academic year faculty contract, but instead are contracted on a 12-month basis.

Administrative & Professional (A&P) Faculty
Administrative faculty and professional faculty are normally referred to collectively, as both require advanced learning acquired by prolonged formal instruction and/or specialized training and work experience; however, the university recognizes administrative faculty and professional faculty as distinct position types. Administrative Faculty positions are generally senior administrators who perform work related to the management of the educational and general activities of the university, for at least fifty percent of their work. Typically, administrative faculty serve in executive leadership roles such as vice president, provost, vice provost, dean, assistant or associate vice president, assistant or associate vice provost, or assistant or associate dean. Other administrative faculty roles can include (1) those responsible for the administrative direction of separately designated divisions or departments of institutional activity; (2) positions whose primary responsibility is to attract external funds; or (3) positions that are characterized by active, continuing involvement in formulating, interpreting and implementing institutional policy and exercise substantial independence, authority and discretion in areas such as program planning, design and allocation of resources. The organizational reporting relationship for administrative faculty is normally not lower than three levels below Executive Council positions. For Academic Affairs, this would include: Vice Provost/Dean (level 1), Academic Unit Head/Director (level 2) and Associate Director (level 3). Professional Faculty require advanced learning and experience acquired by prolonged formal instruction and/or specialized work experience. Typical professional faculty positions are librarians, counselors, coaches, physicians, lawyers, engineers and architects. Other professional positions may support education, research, university life and other such activities. Professional faculty positions must require the incumbent to regularly exercise professional discretion and judgment and to produce work that is intellectual and varied and is not standardized.

Administrative Leave
Leave granted to serve on a jury or appear in court as a witness under subpoena, for testing or interviewing for other positions, or for other reasons approved in advance by the faculty member’s supervisor.

Administrative & Professional (A&P) Faculty Leave
Leave granted to A&P faculty, which can be taken for any purpose.

Compensatory Leave
Leave granted to a faculty member who is required to work on a scheduled holiday or inclement weather day.

Disability Leave
Leave granted to an employee who has a qualified, documented disability as an accommodation under the ADAAA (Americans with Disabilities Act Amendments Act) to ensure equal access and equal opportunities with regard to university employment.

Educational Leave
Leave granted to a faculty member to pursue full-time independent study, graduate/post-graduate study, research or creative activities that will enhance their teaching abilities, professional growth and intellectual renewal.

Emergency/Disaster Leave
Leave granted to employees who are called away from their regular jobs to provide specific kinds of emergency services during defined times of state and/or national disaster.

Faculty
References to “all faculty members” or simply “faculty” in this policy refer to:

  • All full-time instructional faculty on 12-month and 10-month contracts
  • All full-time administrative & professional faculty members 

Instructional Faculty
The members of the faculty who have responsibilities that include teaching, research and service as the majority of their duties.

Leave Through Peer Coverage
The allowance for a faculty member to be absent from work and be paid during the absence, with the stipulation that his or her critical assignments and work will be completed by other employees.

Military Leave
Leave granted for federally-funded military duty.

Political Activity Leave
Unpaid leave granted to serve on an election campaign or to serve a term of office.

Sick Leave
Leave taken when the faculty member is unavailable to work due to illness.

Virginia Sickness and Disability Program
The Virginia Sickness and Disability Program (VSDP) provides covered employees with income protection if they become unable to perform normal job duties because of an illness or injury. The program pays an income during periods of short and/or long-term disability. In addition to disability income, VSDP provides sick leave and family/personal leave that may be taken for short-term absences throughout the year.

Workers Compensation Leave
Leave granted to an employee for a certified job-related illness or injury.

4. APPLICABILITY

This policy applies to all faculty members as well as those who supervise them.

5. POLICY

Classification

Sick Leave

Annual Leave

10-month Instructional Faculty enrolled in VSDP

VSDP

None

12-month Instructional Faculty enrolled in VSDP

VSDP

Peer coverage

10-month Instructional Faculty not enrolled in VSDP

Peer Coverage

None

12-month Instructional Faculty not enrolled in VSDP

Peer Coverage

Peer Coverage

A&P Faculty enrolled in VSDP

VSDP

A&P Faculty Leave

A&P Faculty not enrolled in VSDP

Peer Coverage

A&P Faculty Leave

Less-than-12-month A&P Faculty

Peer Coverage

A&P Faculty Leave

Also see leave types for full-time faculty at http://www.jmu.edu/humanresources/benefits/leave/ft-faculty.shtml.

5.1 Supervisor Approval:
All leave, paid or unpaid, must be approved in advance (unless an emergency makes an advance request for leave impossible) by the supervisor.

5.2 A&P Faculty Leave:
Full-time A&P faculty receive 24 days (192 hours) of A&P Faculty Leave per fiscal year (July 1 – June 30) to be taken for any purpose. A&P faculty with contracts of less than 12 months or those hired during the academic year receive a prorated amount of A&P Faculty Leave. A&P faculty may carry over up to 10 days (80 hours) of leave from one fiscal year to the next, not to exceed the maximum carryover limit of 34 days (272 hours). Refer to frequently asked questions at http://www.jmu.edu/humanresources/benefits/leave/faculty-leave-faq.shtml.

5.3 Compensation for Unused A&P Faculty Leave:
A&P faculty members with 10 or more years of state service will receive a payout of unused A&P Faculty Leave hours when separating from the university or when transferring from an A&P faculty position to a classified position. This payout will be capped at 20 days (160 hours).

5.4 Sick Leave for All Faculty Members Not Enrolled in the Virginia Retirement System and the Virginia Sickness and Disability Program (VSDP):
Faculty members not enrolled in the VSDP will only be eligible for paid leave for qualifying illness through the peer coverage process and any limitations on sick leave granted will be related to the availability of peer coverage and the supervisor’s approval of the duration.

5.5 Sick Leave for All Faculty Members Enrolled in the Virginia Retirement System and the Virginia Sickness and Disability Program:
Faculty members who enroll in the Virginia Retirement System and the Virginia Sickness and Disability Program will have sick leave and disability-related benefits as provided by the VSDP and are not eligible for peer-coverage provisions. Faculty members may choose either VSDP or peer coverage, but not both. Specifics of the VSDP program are available on-line.

5.6 Annual Leave for 12-month Instructional Faculty Members:
All 12-month instructional faculty members are eligible to receive 24 days of annual leave to be used through the approval of their supervisor. There is no payout of unused leave upon separation.

5.7 No Annual Leave for Less-than-12-month Instructional Faculty Members:
Less-than-12-month instructional faculty members are not eligible to receive annual leave.

5.8 Family and Medical Leave:
Faculty members may be eligible for 12 workweeks of paid or unpaid leave for: 

  • the birth and care of a newborn child within one year of birth
  • the legal placement of a child with the employee for adoption or foster care within one year of placement
  • the care of an immediate family member: child, spouse or parent with a serious health condition
  • the employee’s own serious health condition, including an on-the-job injury or occupational disease covered by Workers’ Compensation, which causes the employee to be unable to perform the essential functions of his or her job
  • a child, spouse or parent being on active duty or having been notified of an impending call or order to active duty in the Armed Forces. Leave may be used for any qualifying exigency (as defined by the Department of Labor) arising out of the service member’s current tour of active duty or because the service member is notified of an impending call to duty in support of a contingency operation.

Faculty members may be eligible for 26 workweeks of paid or unpaid leave during a single 12-month period to care for a covered service member with a serious injury or illness if the eligible employee is the service member’s spouse, son, daughter, parent, or next of kin.

Departments are responsible for notifying Human Resources of any faculty member’s request to use FMLA qualifying leave. For details, see Policy 1308, Family and Medical Leave.

5.9 Disability Leave:
Faculty members who have a qualifying, documented disability may be eligible for paid or unpaid leave as an accommodation to ensure equal access and equal opportunities with regard to university employment. For details, see Policy 1331, Disabilities and Reasonable Accommodations.

5.10 Educational Leave:
Paid Educational Leave is granted to approximately 20 faculty members each year. Grants of education leave provide opportunities for faculty members to pursue full-time independent study, graduate/post-graduate study, research or creative activities that will enhance their teaching abilities, professional growth and intellectual renewal. For details, see Faculty Handbook, Sections III.J.1.a and III.J.1.h.

5.11 Emergency/Disaster Leave:
Faculty members may qualify for paid leave if they are called away from their regular jobs to provide specific kinds of emergency services during defined times of state and/or national disaster. For details, see Policy 1113, Emergency/Disaster Leave.

5.12 Compensatory and Overtime Leave:
Faculty members may qualify for compensatory leave for hours worked on a scheduled holiday (up to 8 hours). If the faculty member is considered a “designated employee” they may also earn compensatory leave for an inclement weather closing. Faculty who are considered non-exempt under the overtime provisions of the federal Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) are also eligible for compensatory leave for holidays (up to 8 hours) and for hours worked outside of their regular workweek, but haven’t physically worked more than 40 hours. They may also earn Compensatory Leave for an inclement weather closing if considered a “designated employee.” Non-exempt faculty may earn overtime pay, or if offered, overtime leave at one and one-half times the regular rate of pay/leave when physically working more than 40 hours within a workweek. For details on overtime pay and overtime leave, see Policy 1303, Provisions for Granting Overtime and Compensatory Leave.

5.13 Workers Compensation Leave:
Faculty members may be eligible for Workers Compensation if they suffer a work-related illness or injury. For details, see Policy 1312, Workers Compensation/Return to Work.

5.14 Administrative Leave:
Faculty members may be eligible for administrative leave to serve on a jury or appear in court as a witness under subpoena, for testing or interviewing for other positions, or for other reasons approved in advance by the faculty member’s supervisor. Such leave may be paid or unpaid, depending on the circumstances. For details, see Faculty Handbook, Section III.J.1.b.

5.15 Military Duty Leave:
Faculty members may be eligible for military-duty leave for federally-funded military duty. For details, see Faculty Handbook, Section III.J.1.e.

5.16 Political Activity Leave:
Faculty members may be eligible for unpaid leave for political activity on an individually negotiated basis. For details, see Faculty Handbook, Section III.J.1.f.

5.17 Personal Leave:
A faculty member may be granted a leave with or without pay with the approval of the department head, dean, AVP, vice provost and provost & senior vice president for academic affairs for personal reasons. For details, see Faculty Handbook, Section III.J.1.h.

6. PROCEDURES

6.1 Leave Tracking:
All faculty members enrolled in both the VRS and VSDP must track sick leave in MyMadison.

All Administrative & Professional faculty must track A&P Faculty Leave using MyMadison to ensure accurate carryover and payout amounts.

6.2 Requests for Leave:
A faculty member who is requesting leave must make the request in a timely manner to allow the faculty member’s supervisor an opportunity to arrange for coverage of the faculty member’s duties and obligations during the term of the leave. If an emergency prohibits a timely request, the supervisor must be notified as soon as possible of the request for leave.

The supervisor must notify Human Resources of the faculty member’s request for use of Family and Medical Leave. Human Resources will determine whether the faculty member meets the eligibility criteria. The supervisor must notify the faculty member of this determination in a timely manner.

If the faculty member is not eligible for the leave requested or if the leave is not approved, the supervisor will notify the faculty member as soon as possible. Any absence of the faculty member from regular duties that is not pursuant to approved leave may be considered a disciplinary matter.

7. RESPONSIBILITIES

Supervisors are responsible for approving and overseeing their employee's use of leave under the provisions of this policy. They are also responsible for ensuring that the leave report is appropriately signed and submitted to Human Resources by the end of each month in which the faculty member enrolled in VSDP uses sick leave.

Faculty members are responsible for complying with this policy; including reporting and tracking leave as described in this policy. They are also responsible for requesting leave in a timely manner, unless an emergency makes a timely request impossible.

8. SANCTIONS

Sanctions will be commensurate with the severity and/or frequency of the offense and may include termination of employment.

9. EXCLUSIONS

This policy does not apply to adjunct faculty, graduate assistants, classified employees, or wage employees.

Faculty members enrolled in the Virginia Retirement System and the Virginia Sickness and Disability Program before August 1, 2002 will be allowed to continue in the sick-leave-through-peer-coverage program. All other faculty members who enroll in the Virginia Retirement System must choose between either sick-leave-through-peer-coverage or the Virginia Sickness and Disability Program.

10. INTERPRETATION

The interpretation of this policy is the responsibility of the president and is normally delegated to the director of human resources.

Previous Version: July 2011
Approved by the President: December 2017

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