General Guidelines Regarding Maternity/Sick Leave
By providing a doctor’s note showing your due date, you are entitled to use your accumulated sick days for the 4 weeks before and 4 weeks after the birth of your baby. Many doctors will approve 6 weeks after, or 8 weeks in the event you have a c-section. Of course, all dates are subject to adjustment should you experience a differing period of actual disability, as certified by your physician. You cannot use your sick days for purposes of child-rearing beyond the period of your own disability.
If you run out of sick time while you are still disabled, you can request an unpaid leave of absence under the Family Medical Leave Act. Once your doctor releases you from your disability, you can request an unpaid leave of absence under the New Jersey Family Leave Act for up to 12 weeks for the purposes of caring for your newborn. Benefits are maintained during this time period, but you must remit to the Board, in advance, that portion of the premiums you normally pay. During this unpaid leave period, you can apply for New Jersey Family Leave Insurance (max. 2/3 of salary or $570, for six weeks). Following this 12 week period, you may request an unpaid childrearing leave of absence for the balance of that school year. Refer to Article XXI of the REA contract for more information. Beyond the initial 12 week period, the employee will be eligible to continue their health, dental and prescription coverage under COBRA, at the employee’s expense.
It is requested that you:
1. Notify the Superintendent of your pregnancy as soon as it is medically confirmed,
2. Provide documentation of the “due date”, for use in identifying the presumptive period of personal disability prior to and immediately following the birth, to which accumulated sick days may be applied,
3. Provide 30 days advance notice and medical certification for any other anticipated pregnancy-associated temporary disability leave,
4. Request any period of additional unpaid leave time to be used for child-rearing following the disability/sick leave at least 3 months in advance of the anticipated date of delivery.
5. As soon as practicable, notify the Board of the actual date of birth; this may result in an adjustment of the dates of leave.
Please contact Susan Woodrow in Central Office at (732) 396-1010 if you have any questions.