Employee Handbook 2020-2021 - School District of Manatee ...

 
Employee Handbook 2020-2021 - School District of Manatee ...
Employee Handbook
2020-2021

Employee Handbook   1
Rev: Aug 6, 2020
Employee Handbook 2020-2021 - School District of Manatee ...
Purpose of the Handbook

The Department of Human Resources has developed this Employee Handbook as a guide to
help you during your employment with the School District of Manatee County. On behalf of the
members of the School Board and the Superintendent of Schools, we thank you for choosing
Manatee County as your employer. This handbook is designed to share important information
about Manatee County Schools. However, it is not intended to be all-inclusive or address every
situation that may arise during your employment, nor is it a substitute for Board policies or
official statements. If there is any conflict between this handbook and a Board Policy, the policy
takes precedence. All policies are accessible at ManateeSchools.net under “District”.

As policies and procedures may change during a school year, the Superintendent reserves the
right to alter the content or application of this Employee Handbook. While reasonable effort
will be made to inform you of changes as they occur, it is your responsibility to review District
policies and seek clarification as needed. This handbook supersedes all other Employee
Handbooks for Manatee County Public Schools effective upon the revision date as indicated.

For more information, please contact your worksite supervisor or access the Department of
Human Resources from the District’s website at: ManateeSchools.net and click on “Who do I
contact for HR help?” It is our goal to help you understand your rights, responsibilities, benefits
and the operation of our school district so that you can become a vital member of our
organization.

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Rev: Aug 6, 2020
Contents

Chapter I – Welcome .......................................................................................................................................................... 5
  Vision Statement.................................................................................................................................................................................................. 6
  Mission Statement .............................................................................................................................................................................................. 6
  Organization ............................................................................................................................................................................................................. 6
  The School District ............................................................................................................................................................................................. 7
  Contact School Board Members ........................................................................................................................................................... 7
  Written Communication ................................................................................................................................................................................ 7

Chapter II – Being a School Board Employee ...................................................................................................... 8
 Employee Definitions....................................................................................................................................................................................... 8
 Work Schedules................................................................................................................................................................................................... 8
 The Professional Code of Ethics ............................................................................................................................................................ 9
 Union Membership ............................................................................................................................................................................................ 9
 Dual and Outside Employment............................................................................................................................................................... 9
 Violations of Law ...............................................................................................................................................................................................10
 Personal Business on School Time....................................................................................................................................................10
 Gifts and Solicitation .......................................................................................................................................................................................10

Chapter III – Workplace Standards and Policies ...............................................................................................11
 Equal Opportunity Employment Policy Statement ..............................................................................................................11
 Alcohol and Drug Free Workplace .................................................................................................................................................... 12
 Tobacco-Free Environment ..................................................................................................................................................................... 12
 Emergency and Crisis Management ................................................................................................................................................ 13
 Child Abuse Reporting.................................................................................................................................................................................. 14
 Safety/Risk Reduction Program .......................................................................................................................................................... 14
 Visitors in the Workplace ........................................................................................................................................................................... 14
 Employees with Weapons ........................................................................................................................................................................ 14
 Bullying and Harassment ........................................................................................................................................................................... 15

Chapter IV – Attendance ............................................................................................................................................... 16
 Probationary Period ........................................................................................................................................................................................16
 Attendance ............................................................................................................................................................................................................. 17
 Job Abandonment............................................................................................................................................................................................ 17

Chapter V – Performance Management ............................................................................................................... 18
 Performance Evaluation ..............................................................................................................................................................................18
 Professional Development .......................................................................................................................................................................18
 Teacher Leaders ............................................................................................................................................................................................... 19
 Aspiring Leaders ............................................................................................................................................................................................... 19
 Assistant Principal Pool ............................................................................................................................................................................... 19
 Level II Principal Development............................................................................................................................................................. 19

Chapter VI - Compensation .......................................................................................................................................... 19
 Salary ........................................................................................................................................................................................................................... 19

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Direct Deposit ....................................................................................................................................................................................................... 19
  Pay Day ...................................................................................................................................................................................................................... 19
  Overtime ................................................................................................................................................................................................................... 19
  Compensatory Time ...................................................................................................................................................................................... 20
  Shift Differential (AFSCME Employees) ........................................................................................................................................ 20
  Educational Salary Supplements ....................................................................................................................................................... 20

Chapter VII - Benefits ...................................................................................................................................................... 20
 Cafeteria Plan: Internal Revenue Code, Section 125 .......................................................................................................... 20
 Core Benefits ....................................................................................................................................................................................................... 20
 COBRA ........................................................................................................................................................................................................................ 21
 The Florida Retirement System (FRS) ............................................................................................................................................. 21
 The FRS Pension Plan ................................................................................................................................................................................... 21
 The FRS Investment Plan ........................................................................................................................................................................... 21
 Pre-Tax Deductions ........................................................................................................................................................................................ 21
 Health Insurance ................................................................................................................................................................................................22
 Preferred Provider Organization “PPO” Choices ....................................................................................................................22
 Health Maintenance Organization “HMO” Choices ..............................................................................................................22
 Dental Plan .............................................................................................................................................................................................................22
 Vision Care .............................................................................................................................................................................................................22
 Life Insurance ......................................................................................................................................................................................................22
 Supplemental Term Life Insurance ..................................................................................................................................................22
 Long Term Disability Insurance ...........................................................................................................................................................22
 Short Term Disability .....................................................................................................................................................................................23
 Voluntary Critical Illness Insurance ...................................................................................................................................................23
 Voluntary Accident Insurance ...............................................................................................................................................................23
 Dependent Care Flexible Spending Account ..........................................................................................................................23
 Health Care Flexible Spending Account ......................................................................................................................................23
 403(b) and 457(b) Tax Sheltered Annuities .................................................................................................................................23
 Employee Assistance Program (EAP) .............................................................................................................................................23
 Sick Leave Bank ................................................................................................................................................................................................ 24

Chapter VIII – Types of Leaves ................................................................................................................................... 24
 Paid Leaves of Absence (Instructional Employees) ........................................................................................................... 24

Chapter IX – Employee Rights .................................................................................................................................... 34
 Grievances ............................................................................................................................................................................................................. 34
 Progressive Discipline ................................................................................................................................................................................. 34
 Collective Bargaining ................................................................................................................................................................................... 34
 Reductions in Force and Recall .......................................................................................................................................................... 34

Chapter X - Recognition ................................................................................................................................................. 34
 Teacher of the Year ....................................................................................................................................................................................... 34
 School Related Employee of the Year .......................................................................................................................................... 35

Chapter XI - Communications ..................................................................................................................................... 35
 Telephones, Faxes, and Printing ........................................................................................................................................................ 35
Chapter XII – Ending the Relationship.................................................................................................................... 37
 Resignation ........................................................................................................................................................................................................... 37

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Termination........................................................................................................................................................................................................... 37
   Retirement ............................................................................................................................................................................................................. 37

Chapter XIII – Coronavirus / COVID-19 ................................................................................................................. 38
 Slow the Spread of Coronavirus .......................................................................................................................................................... 38
 Emergency Paid Sick Leave (EPSL).................................................................................................................................................. 38
 Telework .................................................................................................................................................................................................................. 39
 When to Stay at Home ................................................................................................................................................................................ 39
 Face Covering Mandate ............................................................................................................................................................................. 39

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rev: Aug 6, 2020
Chapter I – Welcome

Vision Statement
The School District of Manatee County will educate and develop all students today for their success
tomorrow.
Mission Statement
The School District of Manatee County will be an exemplary student-focused school system that develops
lifelong learners to be globally competitive.
Organization
The district leadership includes a five-member School Board and a Superintendent who is appointed by
The School District. Each Board Member represents a specific geographic district but is elected in a county-
wide vote.
Board members serve four-year terms. A Board Election is conducted every two years. Board members
are elected from two districts in one election and from the other three districts in the following election.
The Superintendent is the Chief Administrative Officer for the District. She directly supervises the Deputy
Superintendent of Instructional Services and Deputy Superintendent of Business Services Operations.

        Welcome to the School District of Manatee County!

        On behalf of our more than 49,000 students and 7,000 employees, it is an honor to welcome you to our district. If
        you are new to our community, I know you will not only come to love the natural beauty that surrounds us; you
        will also learn to treasure the relationships of people like you, who have devoted their careers to educating the
        children of Manatee County.

        You are joining our school district family during a very exciting time. During the last several years, we have
        established a significant trend of progress academically, financially and in terms of our ability to compete with
        other school districts in our area and around the state.

        Ultimately, this record of success led to increased community support which resulted in Manatee County voters
        approving two county-wide tax referendums during the last three years. Those additional funds have helped us
        increase pay for teachers and other employees like you, and helped us build three brand new schools to open this
        year.

        This employee handbook is an introduction to our District and will help you to be a successful employee. I hope it
        will prove to be a valuable resource and reference tool. We want you to feel comfortable and at home here, so if
        you have questions, just ask.

        We use the term “WeManatee.” It stands for “We are the School District of Manatee County.”

        The key word in that phrase is “We,” because it takes all of us working together to educate our students.

        We all stand stronger when We stand together.

        Sincerely,

        Cynthia Saunders
        Superintendent

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The School District
The School Board for the 2020-2021 School Year is composed of the members shown below.

From left: Rev. James Golden, Dr. Scott Hopes, Dave “Watchdog” Miner, Gina Messenger, Charlie Kennedy

Contact School Board Members
School Board members do not keep regular office hours, but are reachable and can be contacted here:
https://www.ManateeSchools.net/domain/1115
941.708.8770 x 41155

School District of Manatee County
215 Manatee Avenue West
Bradenton, FL 34205
Phone: 941.708.8770 x 41155
Fax: 941.708.8653.

Written Communication
Florida has a very broad Public Records Law. Virtually all written communications to or from School District
Personnel are public records available to the public and media upon request. E-mail sent or received on the
School District system will be considered public and will only be withheld from disclosure if deemed
confidential pursuant to State Law.

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Chapter II – Being a School Board Employee

All School District of Manatee County (SDMC) employees are responsible for knowing and following the
SDMC Policy and Procedure Manual and the Employee Handbook which are provided on the SDMC website
https://www.ManateeSchools.net/Page/1
Furthermore, all SDMC employees must abide by all Federal and State laws

Employee Definitions

The School District has four employee classifications:
Supervisors, Administrators, Managers, Professionals (SAMP)/Hourly Non-Bargaining: Includes personnel
who perform management activities such as developing board policies and procedures for the School
District and executing those policies at all levels within the School District. Administrative personnel are
generally senior level professionals who have been assigned the responsibilities of system-wide or school-
wide functions. Examples of administrative employees include: superintendent, deputy superintendents,
principals, assistant principals, executive directors, directors, managers, coordinators, analysts, project
managers and others who perform management activities and, hourly employees such as secretaries,
administrative assistants, and other support personnel
Paraprofessional: The Paraprofessional Unit includes all full time and part time teacher aides, teacher
assistants, technology assistants, library assistants, liaisons, interpreters, health aides. The bargaining agent
is the Manatee Education Association (MEA). A full listing of positions included in this unit can be found in
Article III of the negotiated contract.
Instructional: Includes employees whose positions require certification including, but not limited to:
Department Chairpersons; Grade Level Chairpersons; Guidance Counselors; Social Workers; Classroom
Teachers; Visiting Teachers; Homebound Teachers; Librarians; Psychologists; all Instructional Specialists;
Summer School Teachers; Guidance Counselors, Speech Language Pathologists; Adult and Community
Education Teachers. The bargaining agent is the Manatee Education Association (MEA). A full listing of
positions included in this unit can be found in Article III of the negotiated contract.
American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees (AFSCME): The AFSCME Unit includes all
custodians, food service workers, school bus drivers, bus monitors, bus aides, warehouse workers,
warehouse drivers, communication technicians, and maintenance workers. A full listing of positions included
in this unit can be found in the Article 1 of the AFSCME negotiated contract.

Work Schedules
Employees are hired for various work schedules. Employee work schedules vary from 243 working
days to 185 working days. The number of days in a working schedule is dependent upon the job. For
example, Cafeteria Managers work a 191-day schedule while a school clerk works 197-day schedule.
Check with your manager to determine your specific schedule.

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The Professional Code of Ethics
Because our business involves children, the community holds us to a higher standard than many other
professions. As a result, a Professional Code of Ethics governs all employees of the School Board of
Manatee County. Separate Codes of Ethics govern Support and Instructional staffs, but the spirit and intent
of each is the same: to maintain the worth and dignity of people. Please ensure you are familiar with its
contents, as violations can lead to disciplinary action - up to and including termination.
REF: Instructional Staff: https://go.boarddocs.com/fl/mancofl/Board.nsf/Public#
REF: Florida Administrative Code Rule 6A-10.081 (FAC) Principles of Professional Conduct for the Education
Profession in Florida
REF: Support Staff: https://go.boarddocs.com/fl/mancofl/Board.nsf/Public#

Nepotism
Nepotism is defined as showing favoritism or patronage to relatives. During the formal screening process, an
applicant, who would be supervised by a close relative, must be eliminated from consideration. An employee
may not transfer to a cost center if he/she may supervise or be supervised by a close relative.

"Relative" means an individual who is related to the supervisor as father, mother, son, daughter, brother,
sister, uncle, aunt, first cousin, nephew, niece, husband, wife, father-in-law, mother-in-law, son-in-law,
daughter-in-law, brother-in-law, sister-in-law, stepfather, stepmother, stepson, stepdaughter, stepbrother,
stepsister, half-brother, half-sister, grandfather, grandmother, grandchild, or member of the same household.

Instructional staff members may not nominate for employment, or directly supervise, relatives at the same
work location. The instructional staff member of any District entity or office shall disclose to the
Superintendent any relative for whom the instructional staff member is responsible with respect to
employment decisions, payroll authorization, or job performance evaluations. All employees shall disclose
to the Superintendent, the names of all relatives working at the same work location. Failure to immediately
make such disclosures shall be grounds for disciplinary action, up to and including termination.

Work location is defined to include payroll cost center or any administrative unit under the direct supervision
of a permanent employee of the District.

Union Membership
The Manatee Education Association (MEA) and AFSCME are the labor unions that represents those eligible
school board employees who elect to join. Employees have the right, without fear of penalty or reprisal, to
join or assist the Union or to refrain from such activity. While MEA and AFSCME represents its members,
they bargain on behalf of all AFSCME and MEA employees. Those interested in joining the Union should
contact their local MEA or AFSCME representative directly.

Dual and Outside Employment
As an employee, you may not perform any duties related to an outside job during regular working hours or
during the additional time that is needed to fulfill the responsibilities of the position. Similarly, you may not
use the School District’s facilities, equipment, or materials in performing outside work.

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Violations of Law
As required by the provisions of State Board of Education Rule 6B-1.006(5) and The Principles of
Professional Conduct of the Education Profession in Florida 6A-10.081 FAC, a professional employee is
required to self-report within 48 hours to the Chief Human Resources Officer any arrests/charges involving
the abuse of a child or the sale and/or possession of a controlled substance. Such notice shall not be
considered an admission of guilt nor shall such notice be admissible for any purpose in any proceeding, civil
or criminal, administrative or judicial, investigatory or adjudicatory.
In addition, self-reporting shall also be required for any conviction, finding of guilt, withholding of
adjudication, commitment to a pretrial diversion program, or entering of a plea of guilty or nolo contendere
for any criminal offense other than a minor traffic violation within 48 hours after the final judgment. (A minor
traffic violation could be a parking or speeding ticket; however, a DUI is not considered minor.)

Personal Business on School Time
No employee of the School Board may conduct personal business on school time except for emergencies
approved by their cost center head or the Superintendent. School Board equipment or supplies shall not
be used to conduct personal business, or any other activity not connected with the school system. Violation
of this rule shall be grounds for disciplinary action - up to and including termination.

Gifts and Solicitation
Pursuant to State law no instructional staff member or support staff member shall solicit or accept anything
of value to the recipient, including, but not limited to, a gift, loan, reward, promise of future employment,
favor, or service, or receive unauthorized compensation or payment of any kind that is based upon any
understanding that the vote, official action, or judgement of the instructional staff member or support staff
member would be influenced thereby.

Political Activities
Florida Statute 104.31 and School Board policies 3232, 4232, and 1232 govern political activities of school
public employees. Some things to remember are:
       1.   Political posters shall not be displayed in schools or any School District property.
       2.   Political literature shall not be distributed in schools or on school property
       3.   Solicitations for votes or contributions shall not be conducted in schools or on school property
       4.   Students shall not be required to distribute campaign literature
       5.   Employees shall refrain from participation in partisan politics on school property during the
            hours school is in session
School District employees shall not solicit support of any political candidate, partisan or non-partisan, during
regular work hours. A School Board employee who offers him/herself as a candidate for public office shall
notify the Superintendent immediately upon qualifying for election. He/she shall conduct his/her campaign
so as not to interfere with his/her responsibilities. Personal leave without pay may be taken during the
campaign period.

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Chapter III – Workplace Standards and Policies
Policy against Discrimination & Harassment – Employees/Applicants

 I.    The School Board seeks to provide a work environment free of discrimination and harassment on
       the basis of race, color, religion, gender, ethnic or national origin, genetic information, age, disability,
       marital status, or sexual orientation. No employee/applicant must tolerate such discrimination or
       harassment. The following are examples of prohibited harassment:

       A. Harassment includes
            Any slurs, innuendoes or other verbal or physical conduct reflecting on an individual’s race, color,
            religion, gender, ethnic or national origin, genetic information, age, disability, marital status, or
            sexual orientation which has the purpose or effect of creating an intimidating, hostile or offensive
            work environment; has the purpose or effect of unreasonably interfering with the individual’s job
            performance or participation; or otherwise adversely affects an individual’s job opportunities.

      B.    Sexual Harassment includes
            1. Sexual advances, requests for sexual favors, and other verbal or physical conduct of a sexual
               nature when submission to such conduct is made either explicitly or implicitly a term or
               condition of an employee’s job opportunities; submission to or rejection of such conduct is
               used as a basis for employment decisions affecting the individual; or such conduct has the
               purpose or effect of substantially interfering with an individual’s job performance or creating an
               intimidating, hostile or offensive work environment.
            2. The denial of or the provision of aid, benefits, promotions, rewards, employment, faculty
               assistance, services, or treatment, on the basis of sexual advances or requests for sexual
               favors.

 II. Any employee/applicant who experiences discrimination or any such harassment should report it
       immediately pursuant to The School District’s procedures.
       REF: Administrative Policy 1362, Instructional Policy 3362, Support Policy 4362

Equal Opportunity Employment Policy Statement
The School Board does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, ethnicity, religion, national origin, sex
(including sexual orientation, transgender status, or gender identity), disability (including HIV, AIDS, or sickle
cell trait), pregnancy, marital status, age (except as authorized by law), ancestry, genetic information, which
are classes protected by State and/or Federal law (collectively, "protected classes") in its programs and
activities, including employment opportunities.

It is the legal obligation and the policy of the Board to employ only those persons who are best qualified,
with or without reasonable accommodations.

The Superintendent shall appoint a compliance officer whose responsibility it will be to require that Federal
and State regulations are complied with and that any inquires or complaints are dealt with promptly in
accordance with law. S/He shall also require that proper notice of nondiscrimination for Title II, Title VI, and
Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, Title IX of the Education Amendment Act of 1972, Section 504 of the
Rehabilitation Act of 1973, and the Age Discrimination in Employment Act will be provided to staff members
and the general public. Any sections of the District's collectively-bargained negotiated agreements dealing
with hiring and promotion will contain a statement of nondiscrimination similar to that in the Board's
statement above. REF: Administrative Policy 1122, Instructional Policy 3122, Support Policy 4122

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Alcohol and Drug Free Workplace
The School Board believes that quality education is not possible in an environment affected by alcohol and
drugs. It will seek, therefore, to establish and maintain an educational setting which is not tainted by the use
or evidence of use of any controlled substance.
In compliance with the Drug Free Workplace Act, The School District shall not permit the manufacture,
possession, use, distribution, or dispensing of any controlled substance, alcohol, hemp and hemp products,
and any drug paraphernalia as the term is defined by law, by any member of the District's support staff at any
time while on District property or while involved in any District-sponsored activity or event. Any staff
member who violates this policy shall be subject to disciplinary action in accordance with District procedures
and the terms of collective bargaining agreements.
 The Superintendent shall establish procedures that ensure compliance with this policy and that each staff
member is given a copy of the standards regarding unlawful possession, use, or distribution of illicit drugs
and alcohol by staff and informed that compliance with this requirement is mandatory. Such procedures
shall provide for appropriate disciplinary actions, if and when needed, which comply with the terms of any
negotiated agreement.
Should an employee evidence signs that suggest impairment of their cognitive functions suggestive of
active alcohol or drug intoxication, he/she may be required to undergo reasonable suspicion drug or
alcohol testing
If the employee tests positive for an illegal substance, he or she may be subject to disciplinary actions up
to and including termination of employment. REF: Administrative Policy 1124, Instructional Policy 3124,
Support Policy 4124
If the employee refuses to submit to testing per board policy, he or she will be considered as a positive test
and will be subject to disciplinary actions up to and including termination of employment. REF:
Administrative Policy 1124, Instructional Policy 3124, Support Policy 4124

Tobacco-Free Environment
The School Board is committed to providing students, staff, and visitors with a tobacco-free
environment. The negative health effects of tobacco use for both users and nonusers, particularly in
connection with second and third hand smoke, are well established. Further, providing a tobacco-free
environment is consistent with the role-modeling responsibilities of teachers and staff for our students and
our community, at large
For purposes of this policy, "use of tobacco" shall mean all uses of tobacco, including cigars, cigarettes, pipe
tobacco, smokeless tobacco, chewing tobacco, snuff, or any other matter or substances that contain tobacco
and the possession of papers used to roll cigarettes. The School District also prohibits the use of electronic,
"vapor", or other substitute forms of cigarettes, clove cigarettes, or other smoking devices.
To protect students and staff who choose not to use tobacco, and those attempting to quit tobacco, from
an environment noxious to them, and because The School District does not condone the use of tobacco,
The School District prohibits the use of tobacco within any indoor facility owned or leased or contracted for
by The School District.
The School District also prohibits the use of tobacco anywhere on the campus of any facility owned or
leased or contracted for by The School District, including, but not limited to, practice fields, playgrounds,
football fields, baseball fields, softball fields, pool areas, soccer fields, tennis courts, personal vehicles, and
all open areas. The School District prohibits the designation, use, maintenance, and furnishings of "smoking
areas" or "smoking pavilions" on any facility owned, leased, or contracted for by The School District.
The School District also prohibits clothing or use of other items that advertise or promote the use of tobacco
products as described above on any Board property or Board sponsored events.

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The School District also prohibits tobacco advertising and acceptance of gifts including curriculum from
tobacco companies.
Furthermore, The School District prohibits the use of tobacco in all vehicles owned or operated by The
School District, including, but not limited to, school buses, vans, trucks, station wagons, and cars. REF:
Administrative Policy 1215, Instructional Policy 3215, Support Policy 4215

Emergency and Crisis Management
The School Board recognizes that the use of its facilities and transportation services can be invaluable to this
community in a crisis or emergency. Therefore, in the event of a local or State emergency and upon the
request of the local emergency management agency, the District shall participate in the emergency
management effort by providing its facilities for use as emergency congregate shelters and by providing
personnel necessary to staff them. Additionally, if needed, the District shall coordinate the use of its vehicles
and transportation personnel with the local emergency management agency to facilitate an emergency
evacuation or for other related purposes.
The School District authorizes the Superintendent to establish a crisis management team whose members
shall be trained in various emergency procedures.
If a life-threatening emergency is anticipated in or near the District, crisis management team members, as
well as the principals and other designated personnel of schools serving as emergency congregate shelters,
shall make themselves available as needed. Unless otherwise designated, the principal of each school
serving as a congregate shelter shall be the "shelter manager" and shall be responsible for all aspects of the
operation of the emergency congregate shelter.
The School District recognizes that exempt and nonexempt employees who serve on the crisis management
team and who staff the congregate shelters during a declared emergency will be providing services that
exceed their contractual obligations by working on days and at times when other District employees are not
required to be on duty. In addition to receiving their regular pay in accordance with The School District-
adopted salary schedule for their position, The School District shall pay supplements to those employees
who perform duties in direct support of the District’s congregate sheltering operations on days when other
District employees are not required to be on duty in accordance with the schedule for such emergency
service that is adopted by The School District. Nonexempt staff members who receive such supplements
shall also receive one and one-half (1 1/2) times the established rate in The School District-approved
schedule for such emergency service for hours worked beyond forty (40) hours in a seven (7) day period. In
any case, the pay received shall be considered extra compensation and shall not be part of the employee’s
base salary prospectively.
Following the use of District facilities as congregate shelters, the Superintendent shall calculate the amount
spent during the period the facilities were used for congregate shelters that is above and beyond the usual
and customary expenses to operate the facilities during that time period for the following:
     A. utilities (e.g., power, water, and telephone),
     B. generator usage (rental costs and/or fuel required),
     C. costs related to use of buses and other vehicles, excluding operator costs.
The Superintendent is authorized to submit the itemized total expended by the District for extra
compensation for exempt and nonexempt staff, as well as the additional amount expended for the operation
of the District facilities used as congregate shelters, to the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA)
for reimbursement. The School District shall be informed of the amount of reimbursement requested from
FEMA at the next regularly-scheduled Board meeting. REF: Operations Policy 8415

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Child Abuse Reporting
Pursuant to Florida Statutes, any person, including, but not limited to, school teachers, school officials, and
school employees, who knows, or has reasonable cause to suspect, that a child is abused, abandoned, or
neglected by a parent, legal custodian, caregiver, or other person responsible for the child’s welfare shall
immediately report such knowledge or suspicion to the Florida Department of Children and Families’
Central Abuse Hotline at 1-800-96-ABUSE. The Central Abuse Hotline will accept any reports involving
perpetrators who reside outside the state of Florida so long as the victim is residing in the county in Florida
where the report is being made. All reports made to the Central Abuse Hotline are classified as confidential
and are exempt from the Florida Public Records laws as authorized by State statutes.
A person who is required by Florida Statutes to report known or suspected child abuse or neglect and who
knowingly and willfully fails to do so, or who knowingly and willfully prevents another person from doing so,
is subject to criminal prosecution.

Safety/Risk Reduction Program
The School Board believes that the employees and students of this District, as well as visitors, are entitled to
function in an environment as free from hazards as can reasonably be provided. In this regard and in
accordance with law, The School District will provide reasonable and adequate protection to the lives, safety,
and health of its employees and students, in compliance with Federal and State laws and regulations.
The Superintendent shall be responsible for the maintenance of standards in the facilities to prevent
accidents and to minimize their consequences. S/He shall designate an employee who shall conduct
periodic audits of health and safety conditions within the facilities of the District and take appropriate action
on any violations thereof to the Superintendent.
The Superintendent shall ascertain that the employees and students of this District are aware of their rights
to an environment free of recognized hazards, that they are properly trained in safety methods, that
protective devices and equipment are available to meet safety standards, and that proper rules and records
are maintained to meet the requirements of the law.

Visitors in the Workplace
All visitors are required to enter any District facility through the main entrance. School visitors must show
proper identification and be screened through the school’s visitor management system, receiving a
temporary ID badge which must be worn while on campus. Contractors and vendors on campus must
display valid Level II identification issued by the district at all times while on campus. Employees who
observe an unauthorized individual on the district premises should immediately direct him or her to the
building office or contact the administrator in charge. REF: Community Policy 9150

Employee Badge
School District of Manatee County employees are required to update their employee badge annually by the
first day of school. This annual ID badge replacement will be at no cost to the employee. Lost or damaged
badge replacement will cost $5.00 per badge. Employees are required to wear their ID badge at all times
while on School District of Manatee County property.

Employees with Weapons
No employee of the school system shall have a weapon in his or her possession while on school property
or at a school activity. Guns, whether operable or inoperable, loaded or unloaded, facsimile weapons or
antique weapons may not be brought on to school property including the parking lot or to a school activity.
Any weapon confiscated shall be immediately turned over to the principal/building administrator who shall
turn the weapon over to the proper authorities. Authorized law enforcement officers, including School
Resource Officers and/or Guardians, may have weapons in their possession while on duty.

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Weapons and firearms as defined in F.S. 790.001 and include, but are not limited to, firearms, guns of any
type, knives, razors, clubs, electric weapons, metallic knuckles, martial arts weapons, ammunition, and
explosives.
For purposes of this policy, the term "weapon" also means any object which, in the manner in which it is
used, is intended to be used, or is represented, is capable of inflicting serious bodily harm or property
damage, as well as endangering the health and safety of persons. REF: Administrative Policy 1217,
Instructional Policy 3217, Support Policy 4217

Bullying and Harassment
It is the policy of the School District of Manatee County that all of its students and school employees have
an educational setting that is safe, secure, and free from harassment and bullying of any kind. The district
will not tolerate bullying and harassment of any type. Conduct that constitutes bullying and harassment is
prohibited. REF: Student Policy 5517.01 Administrative Policy 1362, Instructional Policy 3362, Support
Policy 4362

Standards of Ethical Conduct
All employees are representatives of the District and shall conduct themselves, both in their employment
and in the community, in a manner that will reflect credit upon themselves and the school system. The
District wishes to create a culture of honesty and integrity that will help the district meet the goal of
providing a safe and high-quality education environment to all its stakeholders. It is the expectation that all
employees will conduct themselves in a caring, respectful and professional manner that supports our
mission to educate and develop all students today for their success tomorrow. REF: Administrative Policy
1210, Instructional Policy 3210, Support Policy 4210

Fitness for Duty
Should the need arise, the Superintendent of Schools may require that a staff member submit to an
appropriate examination by one (1) of the three (3) health providers designated by the School Board to
determine whether or not the staff member is able to perform essential functions of the position to which the
staff member is assigned with or without reasonable accommodations. The cost for such examinations shall
be the responsibility of the Board. Additionally, and as required by Federal law and regulation and Board
Policy 1122.02, the Superintendent shall direct the provider that is designated by the Board to conduct the
examination, not to provide any genetic information in the report of the medical examination.

Upon the recommendation of the Superintendent and approval of the Board, an administrative staff member
may be placed on a leave of absence related to fitness for duty. Such leave shall be with pay. Furthermore,
the Superintendent may recommend the administrative staff member’s dismissal based upon the results of
the medical examination. REF: Administrative Policy 1161 – Instructional policy 3161 – Support Policy 4161

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Chapter IV – Attendance

Probationary Period
All newly hired employees have a probationary period. See your contract for the exact number of days; the
duration of that period is based upon classification. Employment during the probationary period must be
continuous for probation to be successfully completed.
Administrator/Supervisor employees, the probationary period is in accordance with FS 1012.33 states that
"the first ninety-seven (97) days of an initial principal's or supervisor's contract is a probationary
period. During the probationary period, the employee may be dismissed without cause or may resign from
the contractual position without breach of contract."
Paraprofessional employees, the probationary period begins on the first day of regular employment and
continues for 120 days.
Instructional employees, PER Florida Statute 1012.335 “Probationary contract” means an employment
contract for a period of 1 school year awarded to instructional personnel upon initial employment in a school
district. Probationary contract employees may be dismissed without cause or may resign without breach of
contract. A district school board may not award a probationary contract more than once to the same
employee unless the employee was rehired after a break in service for which an authorized leave of absence
was not granted. A probationary contract shall be awarded regardless of previous employment in another
school district or state.
Hourly Non-Bargaining Employees, A regular employee is a person employed in a continuing position
whose duties require twenty (20) or more hours in each normal working week after having completed a
ninety (90) work day probationary period.
AFSCME employees, the first year of employment is probationary. During the probationary period, the
employee may be dismissed without cause or may resign from the contractual position without breach of
contract. A probationary employee who is recommended for termination has no appeal rights, and no written
explanation from the District is required.
Teachers/Paraprofessionals: Each school or work site may establish its own teacher duty day schedule
consistent with the Collective Bargaining Agreement. A teacher’s duty day will be the equivalent of
instructional and non-instructional minutes per day in a particular school. Teachers agree to meet
requests for assistance or conferences initiated by students or parents that require time outside the
regularly scheduled duty day. The regular duty day can be extended for emergencies that threaten the
health or safety of students. A principal may require attendance at faculty meetings provided certain
contractual provisions are met.
AFSCME/Hourly Non-Bargaining/SAMP: The regular workweek will be Monday thru Friday unless
otherwise indicated in your contract. Specific workdays for each category of employee are defined in the
collective Bargaining Agreement. All employees working four or more hours will receive a 15-minute
break. Those employees working seven hours or more per day will receive two 15-minute breaks. No
employee will be required to work through his or her lunch.

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Attendance

Tardiness: The District expects all employees to be present and ready to perform their duties at the start of
their duty day and to remain present for their entire designated duty day, unless they have the prior
approval of their supervisor to be absent from duty. Employees who exhibit chronic tardiness, patterns of
excessive tardiness, or those who do not call their supervisor or designated representative prior to being
tardy, may be subject to progressive discipline.
Absenteeism: When employees are absent for other than legitimate reasons, e.g. employee illness or that
of a family member, there is considerable financial impact and important tasks are not accomplished.
Consequently, the District will not approve any sick leave in excess of that earned without documentation
from a licensed medical provider certifying the illness and the associated time needed away from the job. In
the event an employee takes unapproved leave without medical documentation, he/she will be subject to
progressive discipline.
Unauthorized absence shall be defined as any absence which is not properly chargeable to accrued leave
or which has not been approved under any of the other leave provisions provided in any District collective
bargaining agreements. Absence due to emergencies will be given full, fair and equitable consideration.
Excessive absenteeism or patterns of absenteeism may be cause for disciplinary action up to and including
termination and may be reflected on the employee’s annual performance appraisal. Prior to completion of
the performance appraisal, an employee must be apprised of administration’s concerns regarding
absenteeism through a conversation between the employee and the supervisor or written notice of such
concerns. Notwithstanding any other provision set forth herein or as covered by union contract, five (5) days
of unauthorized absence in any one pay period or ten (10) days of unauthorized absence in the most recent
twelve month period shall constitute grounds for termination and any employee who is absent for three (3)
consecutive work days and who fails to notify his/her appropriate administrator of the reason, except in
extenuating circumstances beyond the control of the employee, may be terminated for abandonment of
position. REF: Florida Statutes 1012.67 Absence without leave.
Reporting Absences: Employees who will be away from their normal place of work during normal duty
hours are expected to report their absences to their immediate supervisor or designee. Except in cases of
emergency or illness, absences should be arranged in advance and requested/approved in the district
Human Capital Management system HCM-PeopleSoft.

Job Abandonment
Employees who are absent from work without contact and approval by their supervisor will be considered
to have abandoned their position and will be subject to disciplinary action up to termination. Any district
school board employee who is willfully absent from duty without leave shall forfeit compensation for the
time of such absence, and his or her employment shall be subject to termination by the district school
board. REF: Florida Statutes 1012.67 Absence without leave.

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