Published on Rhodes College: College Handbook Employee Policies (

Staff Sick Leave

Eligibility: All full-time 10 and 12 month staff employees are eligible.

Benefit: Eligible employees begin to accrue sick leave credit on the first pay period following their hire date. Sick leave will be earned at the rate of one day each month, up to a maximum of two times the employee′s annual accrual limit. Sick leave will be earned at the following rate:

12-Month 37.50 Hour Employees 3.47 hours per pay period for 26 pay periods  Max Accrual 24 Days
12-Month 40.00 Hour Employees 3.70 hours per pay period for 26 pay periods Max Accrual 24 Days
10-Month Employees 3.41 hours per pay period for 22 pay periods Max Accrual 22 Days

Introductory Period: Employees in their introductory period are not eligible to use sick leave, but will be given credit for accrued sick leave once regular employment status is achieved. If employees still in their introductory period are absent due to illness or non-work related injury, their pay will be adjusted to reflect an unpaid absence.

Maximum: The maximum sick days allowed to accrue is two times the annual accrual.

Utilizing Benefit: All employees who are unable to report to work due to personal or other sick leave conditions are required to notify their supervisor (or an alternate designated by the supervisor) no later than one hour prior to their scheduled starting time. Employees who must leave work due to illness or sick leave conditions should likewise advise their supervisor. In cases of advanced knowledge of a sick leave, such as pregnancy or preplanned surgery, the supervisor must be notified as soon as possible in order to prepare for the employee’s absence. All absences for sickness should be processed in Workday.

Employees will be required to “call-in” every day that they are on sick leave and let their supervisor know their recovery progress, unless their illness is of a continuing nature such as confinement to a hospital.

A doctor’s certificate may be required for sick leave absences. An employee who misuses the sick leave benefit will be subject to disciplinary action as outlined in the Employee Discipline section. Employees are also required to return to work within one day after a physician certifies that the employee is capable of returning. Failure to return to work under this condition is cause for disciplinary action up to and including dismissal.

In addition, each time an employee utilizes more than three (3) consecutive sick days, the employee’s Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA) benefits will begin and the total amount of the employee’s FMLA benefits will be reduced by the amount of sick leave utilized. 

While on vacation, days on which the employee is confined to a hospital or residence because of a major illness or injury may be charged to sick leave. A certificate from the treating physician is required in each case.

As a normal practice, sick leave is to be used by an employee only for his or her own sickness or illness. However, when a member of an employee’s family (spouse, child, or parent, as defined by the FMLA) is ill, sick time may be used. Routine medical and dental appointments should be scheduled outside regular working hours. If this is impractical, medical and dental appointments scheduled during regular working hours, with the prior approval of the department head, will be charged to sick leave time.

Leave after Exhaustion of Benefit: After all accumulated sick leave has been used, an employee must use all accrued vacation and compensatory time. There will be no negative accrual of sick leave. When all paid benefit time has been used, a request for a leave of absence without pay must be initiated. (See also Short Term Total Disability Leave and the Family Medical Leave Act).
The College may require that the eligible employee provide status reports at least every thirty (30) days regarding the employee’s condition.

The College, when circumstances allow, will keep the employee’s position open for the employee to reassume upon the termination of the leave. However, when the orderly function of the College requires replacement, the College may fill the position. In such cases, the College will make every effort to find an equivalent position for the employee elsewhere at the College.

Failure to return to work at the end of a leave of absence will be considered a resignation.  Any employee who has been on leave of absence for over 180 days is terminated automatically, unless the leave is for any disability, the employee remains unable to work due to the disability, and a reasonable accommodation can be made. Any employee who believes that he or she needs additional leave in excess of 180 days as a reasonable accommodation should contact the Benefits Services Manager as soon as possible so the College may consider whether it can grant an extension without causing undue hardship, or if another reasonable accommodation is available.  Any termination under this policy is “no fault”.

Pregnancy: Illness due to pregnancy is treated the same as any other type of illness for the purposes of this Staff Sick Leave Policy.

Benefit upon Termination: On separation from the College, voluntarily or otherwise, no employee shall be compensated for any unused sick leave. Should an employee be employed by the College at a later date, they will receive no sick leave benefits due to prior service.

Should you have any questions about the Sick Leave Policy, please contact the Benefits Services Manager.

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