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Sick Leave Provision Has Been Amended To Clarify That Teachers Cannot Use Unlimited Amount of Sick Leave

K-12 Education Publications

The Illinois legislature recently enacted Public Act 96-0051 which amends the Illinois School Code to clarify the amount of sick leave that school employees may take following a birth or adoption of a child.  
In August 2007, the legislature intended to provide equal rights to adoptive parents and birth parents by amending Section 24-6 of the School Code to include within the scope of “sick leave” the “birth, adoption, or placement for adoption” of a child. The effect, however, arguably allowed birth parents and adoptive parents the right to use an unlimited amount of sick leave following the birth or adoption of a child.
Public Act 96-0051 aligns the language of Section 24-6 with the legislature’s original intent. The new language permits school boards to place limits on an employee’s use of sick leave. School boards are now expressly permitted to require employees to present medical certification as a basis for pay during leave after his or her absence of 30 days for the birth of a child and after 3 days for personal illness.  The amendment also limits the amount of sick leave that can be taken for adoption or placement of adoption to 30 days unless a longer leave is negotiated with the school district’s exclusive bargaining representative. The new law was effective July 23, 2009.