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Jefferson County Board of Education passes sick-day incentive plan

August 20, 2003|by DAVE McMILLION

charlestown@herald-mail.com

CHARLES TOWN, W.Va. - The Jefferson County Board of Education passed a plan Tuesday night that allows school officials to give teachers cash incentives for keeping the number of sick days they take to a minimum.

The plan is meant to reduce the need for substitute teachers, who have been in short supply at times, school officials said.

Under the plan proposed by Superintendent of Schools R. Steven Nichols, teachers would be awarded $300 per year for not taking any sick days.

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Under the plan, which is available to all classes of school employees, there are different levels of cash incentives based on a range of days that are missed.

For example, an employee can miss a half day and still receive $290, or miss one day and still receive $280, board member Doris Cline said.

Board of Education President Lori Stilley said she was concerned that the plan might be too strict. Stilley suggested the possibility of allowing teachers to take one sick day and still be eligible for the $300.

Nichols, who said the initiative is modeled after a Berkeley County Schools plan, said the program could be modified after the first year.

Nichols said the incentive plan will cost about $325,000, which is less than what the school pays for substitute teachers, Cline said.

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