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Your Rights in the Workplace if Your Child is Remote Learning

While students continue to grapple and adjust to their new school system, many parents and care-takers wonder if they are eligible for paid leave while their student learns through a hybrid schedule, or if their student’s school suddenly closes, or if their student is required to quarantine due to a COVID-19 outbreak within the school. Parents and caretakers have rights in the workplace and there are resources that can help. Below, we mention seven rights to be aware of if your child is remote learning.  

You Rights in the Workplace if Your Child is Remote Learning

a. Yes, if your child’s school is using a remote learning model and the physical location of the school is closed, then you are eligible to receive up to 12 weeks paid time off. Your eligibility depends upon your inability to work remotely while caring for your child.

a. No, generally only one parent (the one who is caring for the child) is eligible for child-care related family leave. In order to gain family leave, you have to prove that you are the only guardian capable of watching your child at the given time.

a. Each employer may require additional materials, but all employees must provide, at a minimum: their requested dates, a statement explaining their reason for needing the leave, and information regarding their children’s school/daycare to verify the claim.

a. If your child’s school is operating on a hybrid schedule/alternate day schedule, you are eligible to take leave, but only on the days in which your child is at home. Eligibility requires that no other guardian is able to take care of your child at the time leave is requested.

a. If your child’s school gives households the option to send children to school or to keep them home for remote learning and you choose to keep your child home, you are not eligible for family leave. Eligibility depends upon the physical school campus being closed, and in this case, it is not.

a. If, because of COVID-19, your child is under a quarantine order or has been advised by a health care provider to self-isolate or self-quarantine, you may be eligible to take paid leave to care for him or her. This includes 2 weeks of paid leave under the Families First Coronavirus Response Act as well as 12 weeks of unpaid leave under the FMLA. Furthermore, New York State Paid Family Leave Law (PFL) grants workers who have been employed for at least 26 weeks up to 10 weeks of paid family leave. 

a. If your child’s school is using a remote learning model but is continuing to evaluate and may reopen for in-person classes later in the school year, you are eligible for benefits so long as your child’s physical school campus stays closed.

To learn more about your rights in the workplace, visit here

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