HCEA and HCPSS have agreed to a Memorandum of Understanding related to COVID-19 (“COVID-19 MOU”). CLICK HERE TO READ THE MEMO. The COVID-19 MOU is intended to clarify employee and employer responsibilities; protect the health and safety of employees; provide needed access to telework resources; provide assurance to employees regarding assignments and continuation of pay, benefits, and earned leave; and to protect employee rights during the period of school closure related to COVID-19. Please click here to read the MOU in its entirety.
The following are highlights of the COVID-19 Memorandum of Understanding:
- Compensation will continue for all full and part-time employees who are available to work (e.g. not on an unpaid leave of absence) for the remainder of the fiscal year.
- Employees will not be charged for their earned leave during the two week period in which schools were closed and employees were not working (3/16/2020 – 3/27/2020)
- Employees currently on leave due to a disability have the option to return to work for Continuity of Learning.
- Qualifying employees may utilize COVID-19 leave under the Families First Coronavirus Response Act. Employees are not required to provide medical documentation of illness.
- In recognition that employees may be caring for their families at home, and our students have challenges as well, all employees will have reasonable flexibility in scheduling and performing duties.
- As needed, employees will be provided teleworking equipment in order to perform their assigned duties.
- Employees will not be responsible for providing technological assistance to students beyond what is necessary to access the curriculum.
- Online observations of employee work done by administrators will not count as part of the evaluation cycle.
- In recognition of the uncertainty around student attendance, teachers are not required to make excessive attempts to make contact with students who may not log on for instruction.
- Parents and students will be notified that audio and video recordings of online instruction is strictly prohibited. A student who makes a recording, especially in a way that is inappropriate, will be held responsible for violations in accordance with the student code of conduct.
- In recognition of the evolving impact of COVID-19, HCPSS and HCEA may revisit the memorandum as applicable.
We want to thank members who have reached out to us with their questions, concerns, and suggestions. We also want to extend our appreciation to school system leaders who worked collaboratively with us on this MOU for their ongoing partnership on behalf of employees and the students who we serve. Please continue to share with us both your questions and concerns, and also share with us what has been working well so far. We also want to recognize and extend our thanks to our affiliate organizations, the Maryland State Education Association and the National Education Associations, for their support and advice. As always, please reach out to the UniServ Director assigned to your worksite for assistance.
Josh Lenes and Dawn Pipkin, MSEA/HCEA UniServ Directors
on behalf of HCEA