Fayette Co. education officials to address confusion for teachers over COVID leave policies

Published: Aug. 18, 2021 at 9:45 PM EDT
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LEXINGTON, Ky. (WKYT) - COVID-19 has been changing the lesson plans for schools for yet another school year.

“We’re in an environment where there are quarantines happening,” said Tyler Murphy, Fayette County Board of Education chair.

Students and staff in many districts have been quarantined from close contact to someone with the virus. Earlier this month, the Kentucky Board of Education approved emergency regulation that grants fully vaccinated teachers and staff separate time off days for COVID-related situations. Thursday, the Fayette County Board of Education will have a special meeting to talk about adopting the policy.

“We’re looking at approving 10 days of COVID-19 related sick days for them to use if they end up having to quarantine as a result of a positive COVID test, or if we have employees whose children have to quarantine as a result of COVID exposure,” Murphy said.

Lavonda Eaglin is a teacher in Nicholas County. We first talked to her Tuesday about being in quarantine after testing positive. She is only half-vaccinated. She told us she’s not sure she’ll get the COVID PTO.

“I am a little worried about sick days. We get 10 days every year as a teacher in Kentucky. I may have some banked from other years, I’m not exactly sure how many,” Eaglin said.

She also worries teachers may not get tested out of fears that they would instantly burn the days they do get. In Fayette County, this is something they expect to talk about Thursday.

“That’s why we’re having this special meeting. So we haven’t had a chance to talk through and have a conversation about these issues. I’m sure that some of those will come up,” Murphy said.

That special board meeting will be held virtually on Thursday, August 19 at 5:30 p.m. No action will be taken during the meeting.

The KBE also approved a non-emergency regulation that will take effect in 7-9 months allowing paid leave for similar quarantining circumstances.

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