Reopen Plan FAQs for Substitute Teachers:

NSTU Substitute Teachers,
 
Please Note: As the situation with COVID-19 changes the following answers will likely evolve, and updates are to be expected. These FAQ’s are not intended as contractual/legal advice and if substitute teachers have questions, they should contact their appropriate NSTU Staff Officer at 1-800-565-6788.
Additionally, many questions that members have can only be answered by the Employer, the EECD has also created an FAQ with several answers linked here - https://www.ednet.ns.ca/backtoschool#faq 


1. When does a substitute teacher receive sick leave benefits? 
As per the language of Article 32.07 of the Teachers’ Provincial Agreement, a substitute is entitled to paid sick leave only after becoming classified as a “regular teacher”. A regular teacher is a teacher or other qualified person who has been employed  for more than eighteen (18) consecutive teaching days to take the place of the same regular teacher. Once a substitute is classified as a regular teacher, then they are entitled to sick leave on the basis of one (1) day for each ten (10) days taught (or where replacing a part time teacher, one (1) part day for each ten (10) part days taught). 
Use of sick leave however, cannot commence until the end of the eighteenth (18th) day of such employment.
 
2. Will consecutive service be lost if a substitute teacher is ill prior to being classified as a regular teacher pursuant to 32.03 (more than eighteen (18) consecutive teaching days to take the place of the same regular teacher)? 
A substitute teacher’s consecutive service shall not be interrupted if the substitute is absent up to five (5) days due to illness. This provision shall not be interpreted to mean that the Employer is required to return the substitute teacher to the same position following an absence.
 
3. What benefit(s) do a substitute teacher have if they become ill as a result of COVID-19 exposure?
Substitute teachers have access to any accrued sick time as per the language of Article 32.07 of the Teachers’ Provincial Agreement. Substitute teachers without accrued sick time, or who exhaust their accrued sick time, may be able to access EI sickness benefits.
See above no. 1.
Substitute teachers do not have access to Article 31.03(i) of the Teachers’ Provincial Agreement.
 
4. What benefit(s) do a substitute teacher have if they contract COVID-19 as a result of exposure at school?
Substitute teachers have access to any accrued sick time (as per the language of Article 32.07 of the Teachers’ Provincial Agreement) (see above no. 1) and possibly Injury on Duty for Substitutes, pursuant to the terms of the Letter of Understanding in the Teachers’ Provincial Agreement.
If the substitute can establish that COVID-19 is an injury acquired by the substitute in the performance of their duties then the Union would assist the substitute in making an Injury on Duty Claim pursuant to the Letter of Understanding – “Injury on Duty for Substitutes”, pursuant to the terms of the Teachers’ Provincial Agreement.  Substitute teachers without accrued sick time, or who exhaust their accrued sick time, may be able to access EI sickness benefits.
Substitute teachers do not have access to Article 31.03(i) of the Teachers’ Provincial Agreement.
 
5. Am I, as a substitute, permitted to attend to the serious illness of a family member? 
A substitute teacher who becomes classified as a regular teacher shall not have service interrupted for purposes of consecutiveness because of an absence for Special Leave or Bereavement Leave. 
Special Leave and/or Bereavement Leave are days as recognized in the Agreements between the Union and the Regional Employer. For greater clarity, whether these days are with or without pay is subject to the terms of existing Regional Collective Agreement provisions.  Substitute teachers should review the applicable Regional Collective Agreement Special/Bereavement Leave provisions to determine if they apply.
 
6. Where can a substitute teacher find information regarding federal government supports?
Substitute teachers should contact Service Canada directly at www.canada.ca or 1-833-381-2725 if they have questions regarding eligibility for federal government supports such as EI or other programs.

 

Additional FAQs can be found at:https://nstu.ca/reopen-plan