Information on COVID-19 Accommodations and Leave Options
The following message was emailed to staff today, Nov. 11, and discusses employee expectations once MCPS returns to in-person, in-building instruction, and applying for accommodations or leave for those with qualifying or dependent care concerns.
As we continue planning for the safe, phased-in return to in-building instruction, MCPS is providing staff with qualifying health or dependent care concerns related to COVID-19 with information on their options.
It is important to provide this information to all staff, even though most of you will not return to in-person, in-building instruction until the second semester at the earliest. We must reiterate that any transition to in-person, in-building instruction will occur only when health and safety conditions allow as defined by our local health officials.
Accommodation and Leave Options
To best support our staff and provide our students a high-quality instructional program, it is important that staff members who believe they may qualify for an accommodation are encouraged to submit their requests prior to December 3, 2020, to ensure a timely review of their request. Information to help determine whether you may qualify for an accommodation based on qualifying health concerns or dependent care needs related to COVID-19 is available at our Applying for COVID-19 Related Accomodations and Leave website. This site provides a one-stop location to learn about the processes for requesting such an accommodation, as well as the ability to submit your application and supporting documentation. The site also provides information regarding:
- eligibility for reasonable accommodations under the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) for COVID-19 related health concerns in accordance with CDC guidelines;
- how the Families First Coronavirus Response Act (FFCRA) may provide for additional paid sick leave and expanded family and medical leave for specified reasons related to COVID-19—(through December 31, 2020, pending further congressional authorization to extend this benefit).
- leave options for staff who do not qualify for ADA accommodations based on an individual health condition:
- Family and Medical Leave Act
- Leave of Absences (LOAs)
Staff is expected to return to in-person, in-building instruction at the designated time unless specifically approved not to do so. Staff members should make every effort to submit the requests as soon as possible for accommodations or leave for qualifying health concerns or dependent care needs related to COVID-19. Remember that requests for COVID-19-related accommodations are required even if your return to in-person, in-building instruction will not occur until the second semester. Early submission of accommodation requests allows MCPS to ensure we are considering the needs of our staff members and planning accordingly for in-building instruction.
The safety of students and staff is our top priority. MCPS staff is continuing to work with county health officials to assess and define appropriate steps for the safe return to buildings for identified groups of staff and students. If you have questions about ADA accommodations, email ADAmatters@mcpsmd.org, or contact the Office of Employee Engagement and Labor Relations at 240-740-2888. If you have questions regarding leave options, email ERSC@mcpsmd.org or call 301-517-8100.
To apply for the appropriate COVID-19 accommodation or leave, please visit the Applying for COVID-19 Related Accomodations and Leave webpage to begin.