Tuesday, 16 November 2021
Department of Education and Skills
Public Sector Staff
365. To ask the Minister for Education and Skills the position regarding the 29-day sick certificate for teachers given that there appears to be confusion in relation to extended sick leave beyond the 29 days; and if she will make a statement on the matter. [55873/21]
The Public Service Sick Leave Scheme, which applies to teachers, is regulated by the Public Service Management (Sick Leave) Regulations 2014, SI 124 of 2014, as amended by the Public Service Management (Sick Leave) (Amendment) Regulations 2015, .
The terms and conditions of the for teachers is contained in my Department’s Circular Letter 0054/2019 (Chapter 1).
The employer has a duty under Section 8 of the Safety, Health and Welfare at Work Act 2005 to “ensure, so far as is reasonably practicable, the safety, health and welfare at work of his or her employees”. The Occupational Health Service (OHS) is in place to assist the employer in carrying out this duty. The OHS provider, contracted by my Department, is the sole recognised provider of independent medical advice for teachers and employers.
Where a teacher has been absent on Certified Sick Leave for 4 weeks (28 days) continuous or cumulative in a 12 month rolling period, they must be referred to the OHS, for the purpose of an independent medical assessment to determine their medical fitness for work. The OHS will inform the teacher’s employer of the outcome of the medical assessment regarding medical fitness for work.
Under the terms of the Public Service Sick Leave Scheme, a teacher who is absent from duty because of illness or injury, may be granted paid Sick Leave of:
- A maximum of 3 months (92 days) on full pay in a year
- Followed by a maximum of 3 months (91 days) on half pay
- Subject to a maximum of 6 months (183 days) paid Sick Leave in a rolling 4 year period.