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4050 - Early Separation Program

4050

EARLY SEPARATION PROGRAM

 

 

A.        PURPOSE

            The purpose of this policy is to encourage eligible certificated employees who are considering a separation to accelerate their plans.  The program's objectives include, but are not limited to:

1.         Offering financial incentives which will assist long-term employees who are considering early separation.

2.         Reducing costs to the school district by replacing maximum salaried employees with lesser salaried employees.

3.         Providing a balance of employee experience.

 

B.        QUALIFICATIONS

            1.         Certificated Employee.  To participate, a person must be a teacher or administrator certificated by the Nebraska Department of Education.

            2.         Full-Time Equivalency.  Certificated employees, whether full-time or part-time, may participate in the Early Separation Program (Program);   provided, a part-time employee's benefits under the program shall be based on the employee's teaching contract salary for the academic year preceding early separation.

            3.         Minimum Years of Service.  To be eligible for this program, a certificated employee must have completed 10 total years of credited service in the employment of the school district.  Credited service shall be defined as employment with the school district as a certificated employee.  Board-approved leave for military service, for a sabbatical or for a leave of absence, or any leave required to be granted according to law, shall not be included as credited years of service.  In determining years of credited service with the district for the purpose of meeting the required total years of service, part-time employment is equal to full-time employment.

 

C.        ENROLLMENT REQUIREMENTS

            1.         Resignation.  Participants in the program may resign their teaching positions with the school district effective at the close of the school year, in consideration for the benefits outlined in Paragraph D below.

            2.         Application.  An applicant must submit a signed application and agreement to the Superintendent’s Office on or after October 1 and on or before January 7 of the school year in which the employee contemplates separation.  The Superintendent shall review the employee's record to determine whether the employee is eligible for the program.

            3.         Employee's Ineligibility.  An employee who has received written notice of possible contract termination or cancellation shall not be eligible to participate in this program unless (1) the notice of termination or cancellation is withdrawn by the administration or (2), after a hearing before the Board of Education, the board determines that said employee's employment should not be canceled or terminated.

 

D.        BENEFITS

            1.         Calculation of Benefits:

 (a)       The benefit to be paid to a teacher who has been approved for early separation shall be based on the teacher's teaching contract salary during the last contract year in which they apply for the program.  Teaching contract salary refers to salary paid from the salary schedule.  It includes salary paid for an extended contract but excludes other salary payments such as for extra duties and benefits.

(b)        The benefit to be paid under this program shall be an amount based on the teacher's teaching contract salary for his or her last year of service, multiplied by the number of years of credited service, multiplied by two percent (1.5%).  For example, for an employee with a teaching contract salary of $30,000 and twenty-five (25) years of credited service, the benefit will be $30,000, multiplied by 25 (years), multiplied by .015, for a total benefit of $11,250.

            2.         Payment of Benefit.  The benefit shall be paid to the teacher in three (3) equal payments beginning in the month of September of the calendar year of the teacher's resignation and in September of the following calendar years.

            3.         Limitation on Payment.  The Board of Education shall, in its sole and unfettered discretion, determine whether any early retirement program payments will be made in a particular year, shall determine the total amount of such payments, and shall determine the minimum years of service necessary to qualify for the early separation incentive program.

            4.         Source of Funds.  The school district shall pay the entire cost of the plan.

            5.         Administration.  This plan shall be administered by the Board of Education by and through the administration of the school district.

            6.         Beneficiary Designation.  A complete application must have a beneficiary designated. 

            7.         Income Tax Consequences.  Early separation pay has been determined to be taxable income for state and federal income tax purposes and will be treated as such.  It will be reported as a taxable retirement payment.  The social security percentage and any other required state or federal withholdings will be subtracted from each payment.

            8.         COBRA Rights.  A separating employee will have the opportunity to continue health insurance as permitted by the provisions of the Comprehensive Omnibus Budget Reconciliation Act.

 

E.         ADMINISTRATION

            1.         Basis for Benefits.  The benefits to be paid to an applicant for early retirement shall be based on the salary schedule in effect during the employee's last year of service, as set forth in the negotiated agreement between the West Point Education Assoc. and the district.

            2.         Application and Waiver.  An employee who elects to participate in the Early Separation Program and the school district (through its Board of Education) shall execute the Application and Agreement, Exhibit "A" attached hereto.  The Application and Agreement shall inform the employee that the schools' Early Separation Program is totally voluntary and provides each employee at least 21 days to consider the ramifications of participation in the program before making a decision.  The Application and Agreement shall also includes a specific Waiver and Release of Claims of the participants' rights under the Age Discrimination and Employment Act (ADEA), 29 USC § 621-63 and the Act Prohibiting Unjust Discrimination in Employment Because of Age, Neb. Rev. Stat. § 48-1001 et seq., the Employee Separation Income Security Act of 1974 (ERISA), 29 USC § 1001 et seq., and all other state and federal constitutions, statutes, and regulations that relate to the validity of the ERIP, and allows the employee to revoke the Release or Waiver at any time within one (1) week after signing the contract, and advises the employee to consult with an attorney before signing the Application and Agreement.

 

            An employee who submits an application for early separation may withdraw the application within 7 days after submitting it, but not afterward without the written consent of the Board of Education.  Each application will be reviewed on an individual basis.  The board shall, in its sole discretion, determine the number of applications to be approved in any given year.  If the board receives more applications for voluntary separation than it approves, the board shall approve the applications in the order of their submissions.

 

          An employee's application for early retirement is in itself not a resignation of a contract with the school district.   However, the board's approval of an employee's application for early retirement will be considered a voluntary resignation and termination of the employee's continuing contract.  Should the board not approve an employee's application, the employee's contract will continue in effect, and the employee will remain an employee of the school district unless he or she otherwise resigns or the employee's contract is terminated for just cause.

 

Adopted on               1/12/2006

Revised on:              8/13/2007                                   3/8/2010

                                  12/13/2010                                 8/13/2012

Reviewed on:           ________

 

Policy 4050

Guideline

 

Time Line:   

 

Policy 4050 is planned to be offered during the following school years.  The deadline date, to apply for this policy, for each of these years will be January 1.

 

2007-2008 (1-1-’08)            

A total of six applications, with no more than four applications from one academic level (secondary or elementary), will be accepted.

 

 

2009-2010 (4-8-’10)

Action taken at the March regular BOE meeting results in the Policy 4050 being offered for two employees.  This based on the request of a teacher.

 

 

2010-2011 (1-1-‘11)

This timeline was altered due to the possible merger with SS.

A total of six applications will be accepted in any combination of academic level (elementary or secondary) and content area.

 

Policy 4050, accomplished its intended purpose  and will no longer be offered in its current format following the 2010-2011 school year.

 

 

2012 -2013 (1-7-13)

A total of four applications will be accepted Districtwide; with no more than 3 applicants from one academic level (secondary or elementary)

 

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