- 3 years ago
- Wedding: October 2013
Bees I am so devastated and can’t stop crying.
I work as an SLP full-time in a public school system and had a baby (my IVF miracle baby) in early September. I planned to use all 12 weeks of FMLA and have enough sick leave to cover it. I submitted my FMLA paperwork during the summer. Yesterday my supervisor asked me to forward my FMLA confirmation (because she hadn’t recieved it from HR) so she can put it in my file. I told her they never sent it to me either. She sent them an e-mail and I got an email today saying that my FMLA leave was not approved and I am only granted 10 weeks of leave instead of 12. I am on week 7 of my leave now and we have no childcare plan for those two weeks since I was planning to be off. It was hinted by my supervisor that my case was accidentally misplaced so I didn’t get the notice until now. I had talked to other teachers who did fmla and they hasn’t received confirmations either (our district is extremely disorganized) so didn’t think anything of it.
Apparently to qualify for FMLA you need to have worked a total number of “hours of service” of 1250 hours in the year preceding the leave. This does not include paid holidays, breaks, etc. I apparently have a total of 1239 hours of service, so I am 11 hours short of qualifying for FMLA. 11 hours. Basically, if I hadn’t taken my 3 sick days last year for IVF recovery to, you know, actually get pregnant, I would have qualified.
Even worse, the union recognized this was unfair and a lot of teachers were denied fmla because of this so they filed a grievance which they won. It was changed to not only consider school hours as “hours of service”, but change the formula to account for after school work like required staff meetings, grading papers, after school clubs, etc. However, the language of this is for “instructional staff,” and I as a speech therapist apparently do not qualify as an “instructional staff member.” Never mind the HOURS weekly I spend writing assessments after school, my weekly After school Spanish club I run, and the after school staff meetings I am required to attend. It is so unfair. I have been on the phone with the union all day and they aren’t optimistic that this can be changed.
I even have enough leave for those last two weeks and already have a sub covering the whole 12 weeks, but HR won’t let me use my own leave without a doctors note since it is sick leave.
I have been holding my babe and crying all day. I am so sick over this and anxious. Not only do I have to scramble to find child care now, but I’m trying to process that I have to leave her in just a couple weeks now, 2 weeks earlier than I thought.
I know there probably isn’t a solution to this situation, but I just needed to vent to you ladies.
A sad bee.
edited to add: we had just booked a plane ticket for the day before my new start date to take baby to meet her grandfather. I guess now we have to cancel that too! 🙁