Paid Parental Leave

  • Effective July 1, 2020

    Richmond Public Schools (RPS) provides its eligible employees with paid parental leave to allow employees to care for and bond with a newborn or child under the age of eighteen (18) newly-placed for adoption, foster or custodial care. RPS also provides paid parental leave for birthing parents in the event of stillbirth.

    Paid parental leave will be available for eligible employees in conjunction with the Family Medical Leave Act (FMLA). Employees eligible for FMLA have been employed at least 12 months by Richmond Public Schools and have at least 1,250 hours of service with Richmond Public Schools during the previous 12-month period.

    Paid Parental Leave for Birthing Parents
    All eligible full-time employees will be granted up to eight (8) weeks (320 hours) of paid parental leave within a 12-month period. Multiple births during one event do not impact the amount of paid parental leave granted. The use of paid parental leave must be taken continuously.

    Paid Parental Leave Stillbirth
    In the unfortunate event of a stillborn birth, the eligible full-time birthing parent who had the stillbirth is eligible for up to four (4) weeks of paid parental leave. The use of paid parental leave must be continuous. The non-birthing parent is ineligible to receive parental leave when a child is stillborn. A stillbirth is defined as a fetal death at or after 20 weeks of pregnancy.
    In the unfortunate event of a miscarriage, the employee would not be eligible for parental leave, but is eligible for up to three (3) consecutive days of bereavement leave and may request FMLA leave. A miscarriage is defined as the loss of a fetus before the 20th week of pregnancy.

    Paid Bonding Leave
    After the birth of a child(ren), all eligible full-time, non-birthing parents will receive up to eight (8) weeks of paid bonding leave within a 12-month period for the purpose of bonding and care of a newborn(s). Multiple births during one event do not impact the amount of paid bonding leave granted. The use of paid bonding leave may be taken continuously or intermittently.

    Paid Adoption/Foster Care Placement Leave
    After the adoption or placement of a child(ren), eligible full-time parents will receive up to eight (8) weeks of paid parental adoption/foster care placement leave (for the purpose of bonding) within a 12-month period. The use of paid adoption/foster care placement leave may be taken continuously or intermittently.

    Use of Paid Parental Leave

    1. Paid parental leave will be based on the employee’s base salary.
    2. Paid parental, bonding, stillbirth, and adoption/foster care placement must be used in conjunction with the eligible employee’s family medical leave and will be applied towards the FMLA eligible hours.
    3. The amount of paid parental leave granted to an eligible employee will be based upon the employee’s FMLA eligibility balance.
    4. Paid parental leave shall be exhausted prior to the use of sick, urgent personal business, vacation, compensatory time, and leave without pay.
    5. Paid parental leave is not granted during off contract periods, i.e., summer break for less than twelve (12) month employees and certain holiday breaks. Employees will only be compensated for contracts days not worked due to absences related to paid parental leave.
    6. Once the paid parental leave has been exhausted, additional time off may be requested to deplete the twelve (12) weeks of FMLA. The use of accrued paid leave (sick, urgent personal business, vacation, or compensatory time) will be required to remain in pay status. If the employee’s sick, urgent personal business, vacation and compensatory time accruals are exhausted, the remainder of the employee’s FMLA will be unpaid.
    7. Paid parental leave for birthing parents must be utilized within twelve (12) weeks following the birth of a child.
    8. If a short term disability claim is filed and paid, the amount of paid parental leave granted will be offset by this amount. Filing for short term disability will not extend the eight (8) weeks of paid parental leave.

    How to Apply and Other Important Notes

    1. Notify Supervisor.
    2. Fill out the Parental and Medical Leave Form.
    3. Return the form to Michelle Owens in the Benefits and Compensation Department at mowens2@rvaschools.net.
    4. The Benefits and Compensation Department will email FMLA paperwork.
    5. Complete the top portion of the FMLA paperwork and have the health care provider complete their portion of the form.
    6. Return the FMLA paperwork to the Benefits and Compensation Department as soon as possible.
    7. Notify the Benefits and Compensation Department of the actual start date of the parental leave (birth date and/or placement date). Employees may be asked to provide a hospital birth announcement, adoption agreement or court papers.
    8. The Benefits and Compensation Department will code the appropriate days in the time and attendance system.
    9. Add your newborn or adoptive/foster child to your medical coverage.
    10. Notify the Benefits and Compensation Department and Supervisor of intent to return to work.
    11. Obtain a fitness for duty certification from health care provider and submit to the Benefits and Compensation Department prior to returning to work.