Policy
Purpose: 

pTo describe the eligibility for and circumstances under which paid sick leave may be requested and granted.

Applies to: 

 Faculty and staff appointed to regular positions.

Campus: 
Edwards
Lawrence
Juniper Gardens
Parsons
Yoder
Topeka
Policy Statement: 

Faculty and staff appointed to regular positions are eligible for paid sick leave that is granted for the necessary absence from duty because of personal or family illness or disability, including pregnancy and recovery, injury, health care provider appointments, adoption, or legal/self-quarantine when the illness, exposure to a highly contagious illness/disease, disability, or stated condition reasonably requires absence from work.

Sick leave may also be granted to faculty, unclassified academic, and professional staff to care for other qualified adults living in the employee’s household whose illness, quarantine requirements, or disability reasonably requires absence from work. Sick leave cannot be granted until after it is accrued.

Sick leave may be used for medical related absences or circumstances created by a public health emergency as determined by the Centers of Disease Control (CDC), World Health Organization (WHO), or other applicable state or local government agencies. In addition, sick leave may be used for voluntary self-quarantine when the employee or employee’s family has been potentially exposed to the illness creating the public health emergency or when the employee has a pre-existing health condition which makes them more susceptible to the illness. Sick leave may also be used when a family member’s daycare, Pre-K, or K-12 school is closed for designated public health emergencies. Employees impacted by transportation service closures due to public health concerns should contact their supervisor to discuss alternate work options. 

If an employee or family member becomes ill while on vacation such that they are deprived of a significant portion of their vacation, sick leave may be substituted for vacation leave during the period of illness with departmental authorization.

Any departmental policies regarding sick leave must conform to University policy and be approved by the Director (or designee) of Human Resource Management (HRM).

Accruals/Balances

Faculty and staff appointed to temporary positions, including student employees, are not eligible for sick leave. The sick leave accrual rates for non-exempt employees are determined on the basis of hours in pay status in each pay period. Employees accrue sick leave only during the time periods when they are in pay status. Exempt employees will accrue sick leave if they are in pay status for any portion of the pay period. Part-time employees accrue sick leave on a prorated basis. Sick leave is accumulated on an unlimited basis.

Requests/Authorization

Employees requesting sick leave must notify their supervisor as soon as possible. A department head or supervisor may require that an employee requesting paid sick leave submit medical documentation from a health care provider (particularly when there is reason to believe that the use of sick leave has been abused). During periods of public health emergencies, supervisors do not need to require documentation from the medical provider unless the absence exceeds the suggested quarantine period for exposure or if the employee has been diagnosed with a non-public health-related illness and will be out for three or more work days.    

Employees who have been absent three (3) or more consecutive workdays due to self or family member’s illness may be required to produce medical documentation before being authorized to return to work. The employee shall pay the costs of such documentation. HRM may designate a leave of three (3) consecutive days or more as FMLA qualifying if appropriate.

Employees who do not have sick leave balances available to support the needed absence should speak with their supervisor and HRM for other available options (e.g., Vacation Leave, Shared Leave, Leave Without Pay). In order to support a healthier campus environment, employees should not report to the worksite if they are ill or believe that they, or a household family member, may have been exposed to a highly infectious virus or disease.

Sick Leave Balances Upon Termination/Reemployment

Unused sick leave is forfeited when employment from the State of Kansas is terminated for those who are not retirement eligible. The sick leave balance remaining at time of termination will be reinstated for persons re-employed by University or State of Kansas service within one year of termination.

Exclusions or Special Circumstances: 

Faculty and staff appointed to temporary positions, including student employees, are not eligible for sick leave. Unpaid time off should be granted for sick leave ineligible employees based upon the same criteria used for employees who accrue leave. Documentation of absence may be requested if there is a history of attendance issues or the absence exceeds three or more days (if appropriate).

Extra time worked cannot be substituted for time which should be reported as sick leave usage.
 
Sick leave payout amounts upon termination for faculty and staff who are retirement eligible are listed on the Sick Leave Overview
 
Persons who are retirement eligible at the time of termination are not eligible for reinstatement of sick leave upon rehire.
 
If a faculty or staff member has exhausted all forms of paid leave because of a continuing medical condition, the faculty or staff member may qualify for Shared Leave.
 
For faculty on tenure-track in some circumstances, FMLA qualifying leave may affect the tenure clock. Further information is available at Interruption of the Probationary Period (Tenure Clock).
 
Faculty and academic staff may have situations which qualify them for Modified Instructional Duties.
 
An exception to the sick leave accrual requirement does exist for highly contagious medical conditions. Further information is available at the Leave Advancement Policy.
Consequences: 

Excessive use of sick leave that affects productivity or abuse of sick leave privileges may result in restrictions of leave usage and/or disciplinary action. Chronic absenteeism procedures may be applied to staff who have excessive use of sick leave that is not FMLA qualifying.

Contact: 

Human Resource Management
103 Carruth-O’Leary Hall
1246 W. Campus Road
Lawrence, KS 66045
785-864-4946
hrdept@ku.edu

Approved by: 
Board of Regents, Office of the Provost, Department of Human Resource Management
Approved on: 
Saturday, October 1, 2005
Effective on: 
Saturday, October 1, 2005
Review Cycle: 
Annual (As Needed)
Definitions: 

"Employee's family" shall include persons related to the employee by blood, marriage, or adoption, and minors residing in the employee's household. (Kansas Board of Regents Policy, II, F.13.d(2)).

Quarantine: The restriction of movement for individuals which have been exposed, or have had potential exposure, or diagnosed with a communicable disease to prevent exposure of others.

Keywords: 
Sick, sick leave, family illness, family sick, accrual, leave accrual, quaratine, highly infectious, disease, public health emergency, illness
Change History: 

03/13/2020: Revised through an expedited process in order to provide guidance given concerns related to COVID-19.
07/11/2016: Updated to remove gendered pronouns.
04/28/2016: Updated Review Date
09/03/2015: Updated Review Date
08/13/2015: 

  • Updated Human Resources/HR to Human Resource Management/HRM
  • Added Purpose
  • Updated “Applies to” to reflect regular positions and campuses
  • Expanded on policy statement
  • Added exclusions and special circumstances
  • Added Consequences
  • Added Voluntary Leave without pay to related procedures
  • Added definition of “employee’s family”

01/21/2015: Policy formatting cleanup (e.g., bolding, spacing).
05/30/2013: Updated HR web links to sick leave charts and USS handbook; removed “Equal Opportunity” from department name in Contacts section.

Personnel: Faculty/Academic Staff Categories: 
Leaves & Holidays
Personnel: Staff Categories: 
Leaves & Holidays

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