AB 2393 ESTABLISHES CHILD-BONDING LEAVE FOR BOTH CERTIFICATED AND CLASSIFIED EMPLOYEES
The Gist ● Paid child-bonding leave expanded to Classified Staff ● Paid leave may be at either the differential rate or 50% of the employee's pay depending on which form of leave has been adopted by the school district ● 1,250 hour eligibility requirement for child-binding leave removed ● Sick leave may be used for child-bonding purposes ● All AB 2393 provisions become effective January 1, 2017, regardless of whether they conflict with existing collective bargaining agreement language
The Details Just one year following implementation of differential pay for child-bonding time taken by certificated staff under the California Family Rights Act ("CFRA"), legislators have expanded that pay to classified staff through Assembly Bill ("AB") 2393. Effective January 1, 2017, as discussed below, AB 2393 also changes several aspects of the existing paid child-bonding leave and resolves many questions created by last year's legislation.
● Classified Employees Classified employees now qualify for paid child-bonding leave. Specifically, when a classified employee has exhausted all available sick leave, including all accumulated sick leave, and continues to be absent for child bonding purposes, he or she shall be paid at the differential rate or 50% of his or her salary (according to the extended illness leave adopted by the school district) for the remaining portion of the 12-workweek period of parental leave. Child-bonding leave extends to natural, adoptive, and foster parents. Pursuant to the CFRA, child-bonding leave may be used within one year of the child's birth or adoption.
● 50% Pay Last year's legislation, creating Education Code section 44977.5, provided differential pay for certificated staff who accessed child-bonding leave for up to 12 workweeks, created a dilemma for school districts that issue 50% pay for up to 100 days to certificated staff who access extended illness pay. AB 2393 clarifies that, for those districts implementing the 50% of his or her regular pay during that child-bonding leave. ● 1,250 Hour Requirement Eliminated Typically, employees must work 1,250 hours to qualify for child-bonding leave under the CFRA. However, AB 2393 removes this requirement for all employees who wish to access paid child-bonding leave. However, AB 2393 makes clear that the CFRA child-bonding leave requirements continue to apply, but only the 1,250-hour requirement has been eliminated.
● Sick Leave for Child-Bonding Last year's legislation left unclear whether certificated employees could use sick leave for child-bonding purposes. AB 2393 makes clear that both certificated and classified employees may use sick leave for child-bonding purposes.
● Collective Bargaining Unlike last year's legislation, that provided a period of time for school districts to negotiate in certain instances prior to implementation of pay for child-bonding leave, AB 2393 requires school districts to implement the new legislation on January 1, 2017. AB 2393 further clarifies that it provides a floor and does not diminish any greater rights created by a collective bargaining agreement. Practical Pointers ● Permit paid child-bonding leave for classified employees ● School districts implementing 50% pay for extended illness leave that developed procedures for differential leave following last year's legislation will transition to 50% pay for child-bonding leave ● Elimination of the 1,250 hour requirement will significantly increase the number of employees who qualify, especially for part-time classified employees ● Employees must be permitted to use sick leave for child-bonding purposes ● School districts must be prepared to implement AB 2393, in full, by January 1, 2017 as the negotiations exception in last year's legislation does not exist. ● If a conflict exists between AB 2393 and existing collective bargaining agreement language, the authority providing employees with the greatest rights will control
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