West Virginia Code
1 - GENERAL PROVISIONS
2 - SCHOOL PERSONNEL
18 A- 2 - 1
18 A- 2 - 1 A
18 A- 2 - 2
18 A- 2 - 2 A
18 A- 2 - 3
18 A- 2 - 4
18 A- 2 - 5
18 A- 2 - 5 A
18 A- 2 - 6
18 A- 2 - 6 A
18 A- 2 - 7
18 A- 2 - 7 A
18 A- 2 - 7 B
18 A- 2 - 8
18 A- 2 - 8 A
18 A- 2 - 9
18 A- 2 - 10
18 A- 2 - 11
18 A- 2 - 12
18 A- 2 - 12 A
18 A- 2 - 13
18 A- 2 - 14
3 - TRAINING, CERTIFICATION, LICENS
3A - CENTER FOR PROFESSIONAL DEVELO
3B - EDUCATORS' PROFESSIONAL STANDA
3C - IMPROVING TEACHING AND LEARNIN
4 - SALARIES, WAGES AND OTHER BENEF
5 - AUTHORITY; RIGHTS; RESPONSIBILI
6 - COUNTY RETIREMENT FUND
7 - SEVERABILITY
CHAPTER 18A. SCHOOL PERSONNEL.
ARTICLE 2. SCHOOL PERSONNEL.
(a) The employment of professional personnel shall be made by the board only upon nomination and recommendation of the superintendent, subject to the following:
(1) The superintendent shall provide the principal at the school at which the professional educator or paraprofessional employee is to be employed an opportunity to interview all qualified applicants and make recommendations to the county superintendent regarding their employment;
(2) The principal may not recommend for employment an individual who is related to him or her as father, mother, son, daughter, brother, sister, uncle, aunt, first cousin, nephew, niece, husband, wife, father-in-law, mother-in-law, son-in-law, daughter-in-law, brother-in-law, sister-in-law, stepfather, stepmother, stepson, stepdaughter, stepbrother, stepsister, half brother or half sister;
(3) Nothing shall prohibit the timely employment of persons to perform necessary duties;
(4) In case the board refuses to employ any or all of the persons nominated, the superintendent shall nominate others and submit the same to the board at such time as the board may direct;
(5) All personnel so nominated and recommended for employment and for subsequent assignment shall meet the certification, licensing, training and other eligibility classifications as may be required by provisions of this chapter and by state board rule. In addition to any other information required, the application for any certification or licensing shall include the applicant's Social Security number.
(b) Professional personnel employed as deputy, associate or assistant superintendents by the board in offices, departments or divisions at locations other than a school and who are directly answerable to the superintendent shall serve at the will and pleasure of the superintendent and may be removed by the superintendent upon approval of the board. Such professional personnel shall retain seniority rights only in the area or areas in which they hold valid certification or licensure.
A county board is authorized to employ athletic directors to work in the public schools under the supervision of a school principal and in accordance with the rules of the county board.
(a) The athletic director is responsible for planning, management, operation and evaluation of the athletic program for the school or schools to which he or she is assigned.
(b) The responsibilities of an athletic director may include, but are not limited to the following:
(1) Supervising athletic games;
(2) Overseeing the athletic budget;
(3) Hiring game officials;
(4) Scheduling athletic contests;
(5) Knowing and upholding all county, West Virginia Secondary Schools Activities Commission (WVSSAC) and league rules;
(6) Maintaining proper records as required by West Virginia Secondary Schools Activities Commission (WVSSAC) for school participation;
(7) Scheduling transportation for athletic teams;
(8) Preparing and verifying athletic eligibility lists;
(9) Supervising coaches and, if appropriately certified, observing and evaluating coaches;
(10) Securing all needed personnel for basic athletic event operations;
(11) Procuring and caring for athletic equipment; and
(12) Performing other duties involving athletics as assigned by the principal or as a part of a county job description for athletic directors.
§18A-2-2. Employment of teachers; contracts; continuing contract status; how terminated; dismissal for lack of need; released time; failure of teacher to perform contract or violation thereof; written notice bonus for teachers and professional personnel.
(a) Before entering upon their duties, all teachers shall execute a contract with their county boards, which shall state the salary to be paid and shall be in the form prescribed by the state superintendent. Each contract shall be signed by the teacher and by the president and secretary of the county board and shall be filed, together with the certificate of the teacher, by the secretary of the office of the county board. When necessary to facilitate the employment of employable professional personnel and prospective and recent graduates of teacher education programs who have not yet attained certification, the contract may be signed upon the condition that the certificate is issued to the employee prior to the beginning of the employment term in which the employee enters upon his or her duties.
(b) Each teacher's contract, under this section, shall be designated as a probationary or continuing contract. A probationary teachers contract shall be for a term of not less than one nor more than three years, one of which shall be for completion of a beginning teacher internship pursuant to the provisions of section two-b, article three of this chapter, if applicable. If, after three years of such employment, the teacher who holds a professional certificate, based on at least a bachelor's degree, has met the qualifications for a bachelors degree and the county board enter into a new contract of employment, it shall be a continuing contract, subject to the following:
(1) Any teacher with less than a bachelor's degree who holds a valid certificate and is employed in a county beyond the three-year probationary period shall be granted continuing contract status upon qualifying for the professional certificate based upon a bachelor's degree, if the teacher becomes reemployed; and
(2) A teacher holding continuing contract status with one county shall be granted continuing contract status with any other county upon completion of one year of acceptable employment if the employment is during the next succeeding school year or immediately following an approved leave of absence extending no more than one year.
(c) The continuing contract of any teacher shall remain in full force and effect except as modified by mutual consent of the school board and the teacher, unless and until terminated, subject to the following:
(1) A continuing contract may not be terminated except:
(A) By a majority vote of the full membership of the county board on or before May 1 of the then current year, after written notice, served upon the teacher, return receipt requested, stating cause or causes and an opportunity to be heard at a meeting of the board prior to the board's action on the termination issue; or
(B) By written resignation of the teacher on or before May 1 to initiate termination of a continuing contract;
(2) The termination shall take effect at the close of the school year in which the contract is terminated;
(3) The contract may be terminated at any time by mutual consent of the school board and the teacher;
(4) This section does not affect the powers of the school board to suspend or dismiss a principal or teacher pursuant to section eight of this article;
(5) A continuing contract for any teacher holding a certificate valid for more than one year and in full force and effect during the school year 1984-1985 shall remain in full force and effect;
(6) A continuing contract does not operate to prevent a teacher's dismissal based upon the lack of need for the teacher's services pursuant to the provisions of law relating to the allocation to teachers and pupil-teacher ratios. The written notification of teachers being considered for dismissal for lack of need shall be limited to only those teachers whose consideration for dismissal is based upon known or expected circumstances which will require dismissal for lack of need. An employee who was not provided notice and an opportunity for a hearing pursuant to this subsection may not be included on the list. In case of dismissal for lack of need, a dismissed teacher shall be placed upon a preferred list in the order of their length of service with that board. A teacher may not be employed by the board until each qualified teacher on the preferred list, in order, has been offered the opportunity for reemployment in a position for which he or she is qualified, not including a teacher who has accepted a teaching position elsewhere. The reemployment shall be upon a teacher's preexisting continuing contract and has the same effect as though the contract had been suspended during the time the teacher was not employed.
(d) In the assignment of position or duties of a teacher under a continuing contract, the board may provide for released time of a teacher for any special professional or governmental assignment without jeopardizing the contractual rights of the teacher or any other rights, privileges or benefits under the provisions of this chapter. Released time shall be provided for any professional educator while serving as a member of the Legislature during any duly constituted session of that body and its interim and statutory committees and commissions without jeopardizing his or her contractual rights or any other rights, privileges, benefits or accrual of experience for placement on the state minimum salary schedule in the following school year under the provisions of this chapter, board policy and law.
(e) A teacher is disqualified to teach in any public school in the state for the duration of the next ensuing school year, if that teacher:
(1) Fails to fulfill his or her contract with the board, unless prevented from doing so by personal illness or other just cause or unless released from his or her contract by the board, or
(2) Violates any lawful provision of his or her contract: Provided, That the marriage of a teacher is not considered a failure to fulfill, or violation of, the contract.
The State Department of Education or board may hold all papers and credentials of the teacher on file for a period of one year for the violation and shall report such disqualification status in the National Association of State Directors of Teacher Education and Certification (NASDTEC) database system.
(f) Any classroom teacher, as defined in section one, article one of this chapter, who desires to resign employment with a county board or request a leave of absence, the resignation or leave of absence to become effective on or before July 15 of the same year and after completion of the employment term, may do so at any time during the school year by written notification of the resignation or leave of absence and any notification received by a county board shall automatically extend the teacher's public employee insurance coverage until August 31 of the same year.
(g) (1) A classroom teacher who gives written notice to the county board on or before March 1 of the school year of his or her retirement from employment with the board at the conclusion of the school year shall be paid $500 from the early notification of retirement line item established for the Department of Education for this purpose, subject to appropriation by the Legislature. If the appropriations to the Department of Education for this purpose are insufficient to compensate all applicable teachers, the Department of Education shall request a supplemental appropriation in an amount sufficient to compensate all such teachers. Additionally, if funds are still insufficient to compensate all applicable teachers, the priority of payment is for teachers who give written notice the earliest. This payment may not be counted as part of the final average salary for the purpose of calculating retirement.
(2) The position of a classroom teacher providing written notice of retirement pursuant to this subsection may be considered vacant and the county board may immediately post the position as an opening to be filled at the conclusion of the school year. If a teacher has been hired to fill the position of a retiring classroom teacher prior to the start of the next school year, the retiring classroom teacher is disqualified from continuing his or her employment in that position. However, the retiring classroom teacher may be permitted to continue his or her employment in that position and forfeit the early retirement notification payment if, after giving notice of retirement in accordance with this subsection, he or she becomes subject to a significant unforeseen financial hardship, including a hardship caused by the death or illness of an immediate family member or loss of employment of a spouse. Other significant unforeseen financial hardships shall be determined by the county superintendent on a case-by-case basis. This subsection does not prohibit a county school board from eliminating the position of a retiring classroom teacher.
(a) Any teacher who is returning from an approved leave of absence that extended for a period of one year or less shall be reemployed by the county board with the right to be restored to the same assignment of position or duties held prior to the approved leave of absence. Such teacher shall retain all seniority, rights and privileges which had accrued at the time of the approved leave of absence, and shall have all rights and privileges generally accorded teachers at the time of the reemployment.
(b) An employee shall notify the county board at least ten working days prior to beginning a leave of absence. The county board shall approve such leave of absence for any teacher or service personnel who requests an extended leave of absence without pay for any period of time not exceeding one year for the purpose of pregnancy, childbirth or adoptive or infant bonding. An employee shall not be required to use accumulated annual leave or sick leave prior to taking an extended leave of absence.
(c) Such employee who returns from an approved leave of absence for the purpose of pregnancy, childbirth or adoptive or infant bonding which lasted for a period of one year or less than one year shall be reemployed with the right to be restored to the same assignment of position or duties and benefits held prior to the approved leave of absence. Such employee shall retain all rights and privileges generally accorded employees at the time of the reemployment.
§18A-2-3. Employment of substitute teachers; employment of retired teachers as substitutes in areas of critical need and shortage; and employment of prospective employable professional personnel.
(a) The county superintendent, subject to approval of the county board, may employ and assign substitute teachers to any of the following duties:
(1) Fill the temporary absence of any teacher or an unexpired school term made vacant by resignation, death, suspension or dismissal;
(2) Fill a teaching position of a regular teacher on leave of absence; and
(3) Perform the instructional services of any teacher who is authorized by law to be absent from class without loss of pay, providing the absence is approved by the board of education in accordance with the law.
The substitute shall be a duly certified teacher.
(b) Notwithstanding any other provision of this code to the contrary, a substitute teacher who has been assigned as a classroom teacher in the same classroom continuously for more than one half of a grading period and whose assignment remains in effect two weeks prior to the end of the grading period, shall remain in the assignment until the grading period has ended, unless the principal of the school certifies that the regularly employed teacher has communicated with and assisted the substitute with the preparation of lesson plans and monitoring student progress or has been approved to return to work by his or her physician. For the purposes of this section, teacher and substitute teacher, in the singular or plural, mean professional educator as defined in section one, article one of this chapter.
(c) (1) The Legislature hereby finds and declares that due to a shortage of qualified substitute teachers, a compelling state interest exists in expanding the use of retired teachers to provide service as substitute teachers in areas of critical need and shortage. The Legislature further finds that diverse circumstances exist among the counties for the expanded use of retired teachers as substitutes.
(2) For the purposes of this subsection:
(A) “Area of critical need and shortage for substitute teachers” means an area of certification and training in which the number of available substitute teachers in the county who hold certification and training in that area and who are not retired is insufficient to meet the projected need for substitute teachers; and
(B) “Teacher or substitute teacher” includes speech pathologists and school nurses.
(3) A person receiving retirement benefits under article seven-a, chapter eighteen of this code or who is entitled to retirement benefits during the fiscal year in which that person retired may accept employment as a critical needs substitute teacher for an unlimited number of days each fiscal year without affecting the monthly retirement benefit to which the retirant is otherwise entitled if the following conditions are satisfied:
(A) The county board adopts a policy recommended by the superintendent to address areas of critical need and shortage for substitute teachers;
(B) The policy sets forth the areas of critical need and shortage for substitute teachers in the county in accordance with the definition of area of critical need and shortage for substitute teachers set forth in subdivision (2) of this subsection;
(C) The policy provides for the employment of retired teachers as critical needs substitute teachers during the school year on an expanded basis in areas of critical need and shortage for substitute teachers as provided in this subsection;
(D) The policy provides that a retired teacher may be employed as a substitute teacher in an area of critical need and shortage for substitute teachers on an expanded basis as provided in this subsection only when no other teacher who holds certification and training in the area and who is not retired is available and accepts the substitute assignment;
(E) The policy is effective for one school year only and is subject to annual renewal by the county board;
(F) The state board approves the policy and the use of retired teachers as substitute teachers on an expanded basis in areas of critical need and shortage for substitute teachers as provided in this subsection; and
(G) Prior to employment of a retired teacher as a critical needs substitute teacher beyond the post-retirement employment limitations established by the Consolidated Public Retirement Board, the superintendent of the affected county submits to the state board in a form approved by the Consolidated Public Retirement Board and the state board, an affidavit signed by the superintendent stating the name of the county, the fact that the county has adopted a policy to employ retired teachers as substitutes to address areas of critical need and shortage, the name or names of the person or persons to be employed as a critical needs substitute pursuant to the policy, the critical need and shortage area position filled by each person, the date that the person gave notice to the county board of the person’s intent to retire, and the effective date of the person’s retirement. Upon verification of compliance with this section and the eligibility of the critical needs substitute teacher for employment beyond the post-retirement limit, the state board shall submit the affidavit to the Consolidated Public Retirement Board.
(4) Any person who retires and begins work as a critical needs substitute teacher within the same fiscal year in which that person retired shall lose those retirement benefits attributed to the annuity reserve, effective from the first day of employment as a retiree critical needs substitute teacher in that fiscal year and ending with the month following the date the retiree ceases to perform service as a critical needs substitute teacher.
(5) Retired teachers employed to perform expanded substitute service pursuant to this subsection are considered day-to-day, temporary, part-time employees. The substitutes are not eligible for additional pension or other benefits paid to regularly employed employees and may not accrue seniority.
(6) A retired teacher is eligible to be employed as a critical needs substitute teacher to fill a vacant position without any loss of retirement benefits attributed to the annuity reserve only if the retired teacher’s retirement became effective before the first day of July preceding at least the fiscal year during which he or she is employed as a critical needs substitute teacher.
(7) When a retired teacher is employed as a critical needs substitute to fill a vacant position, the county board shall continue to post the vacant position until it is filled with a regularly employed teacher who is fully certified or permitted for the position.
(8) When a retired teacher is employed as a critical needs substitute to fill a vacant position, the position vacancy shall be posted electronically and easily accessible to prospective employees as determined by the state board.
(9) Until this subsection is expired pursuant to subdivision (10) of this subsection, the state board shall report to the Joint Committee on Government and Finance, prior to February 1 of each year, information indicating the effectiveness of the provisions of this subsection on reducing the critical need and shortage of substitute teachers including, but not limited to, the number of retired teachers, by critical need and shortage area position filled and by county, employed beyond the post-retirement employment limit established by the Consolidated Public Retirement Board, the date that each person gave notice to the county board of the person’s intent to retire, and the effective date of the person’s retirement. A copy of the report shall also be provided to the Legislative Oversight Commission on Education Accountability.
(10) The provisions of this subsection shall expire on June 30, 2020.
(d) (1) Notwithstanding any other provision of this code to the contrary, each year a county superintendent may employ prospective employable professional personnel on a reserve list at the county level subject to the following conditions:
(A) The county board adopts a policy authorizing the employment of prospective employable professional personnel to address areas of critical need and shortage;
(B) The county board posts a notice of the critical need and shortage area positions in the county in a conspicuous place in each school or on the county website for at least ten working days prior to making offers of employment to prospective candidates; and
(C) There are not any potentially qualified applicants available and willing to fill the position.
(2) Prospective employable professional personnel may only be employed from candidates at a job fair who have or will graduate from college in the current school year and will commence employment at the next employment term.
(3) The number of prospective employable professional personnel employed is limited to the number required to fill the critical need and shortage area positions posted in accordance with subdivision (1) of this subsection.
(4) Prospective employable professional personnel shall be granted benefits at a cost to the county board and as a condition of the employment contract as approved by the county board.
(5) Regular employment status for prospective employable professional personnel may be obtained only upon recommendation by the superintendent and approval by the county board following consideration of the qualifications of the candidate in accordance with the applicable provisions of section seven-a, article four of this chapter. Upon board approval, prospective employable professional personnel may be placed into a critical needs position if the job has been posted at least once in accordance with paragraph (B), subdivision (1) of this subsection resulting in no qualified applicants. Employment of the prospective employable professional personnel pursuant to this subsection may occur without the need for additional postings and without the need for additional faculty senate involvement other than the initial faculty senate involvement required in the case of a classroom teaching position pursuant to section seven-a, article four of this chapter.
(6) Nothing in this subsection prevents a county board from filling a posted vacancy in an established, existing or newly created position at any time in accordance with the other provisions of this chapter.
(7) For the purpose of recruiting professional personnel in critical needs areas and to attract professional personnel in a critical need or shortage area, county boards of education may from local funds pay prospective employable professional personnel a one-time financial incentive such as, but not limited to, a signing bonus or moving expenses, after a contract of employment has been signed.
§18A-2-4. Commercial driver's license for school personnel; intrastate waiver for bus operators diagnosed with diabetes mellitus requiring insulin; reimbursement of electrician's and commercial driver's license when required, and educational sign language interpreter certification.
(a) If a commercial driver's license is required as a condition of employment for any school employee or qualified applicant who becomes an employee by a county board the cost is paid in full by the county board.
A county board may not require any employee or applicant who becomes an employee of the board to pay the cost of acquiring a commercial driver's license as a condition of employment.
(b) The Division of Motor Vehicles shall accept the West Virginia Department of Education physical and psychomotor test result forms in lieu of the Division of Motor Vehicles vision report form.
(c) A school bus operator who is currently employed by a county board or who is otherwise subject to state board rules governing school bus operators and who is diagnosed with diabetes mellitus requiring insulin is not ineligible for employment as a school bus operator because of the diagnosis if the operator is issued a passenger endorsement for his or her commercial driver license through the intrastate waiver program pertaining to diabetes of the West Virginia Division of Motor Vehicles, subject to the following:
(1) A copy of the information required to be submitted to the Division of Motor Vehicles for waiver application and proof of passenger endorsement under the waiver program is submitted to his or her employer; and
(2) The operator remains in compliance with the stipulations of and grounds for eligibility for the intrastate waiver.
(d) If a county board requires of any employee who is employed as an electrician any license renewal when the employee is exempt from renewing the license pursuant to section three, article three-b, chapter twenty-nine of this code, the cost of the license renewal is paid in full by the county board.
(e) The cost of certification renewal and satisfying the requirements of the West Virginia Registry of Interpreters is paid in full by the employer for any service person who is:
(1) Employed as an educational sign language interpreter I or II and is required to complete any testing, training or continuing education in order to renew or maintain certification at that level;
(2) Employed as an educational sign language interpreter I and is required to complete any testing, training or continuing education to advance to an educational sign language interpreter II; or
(3) Employed as a sign support specialist and is required to complete any testing, training or continuing education in order to advance to an educational sign language interpreter I or II.
(f) For any service person required to hold certification as a condition of employment, any time devoted to acquiring or maintaining the certification, including instructional time and training, constitutes hours of continuing education for purposes of meeting the annual continuing education requirements in state board policy.
(g) Compliance with or failure to comply by a health care provider licensed and authorized pursuant to chapter thirty of this code, with the reporting requirements of the Division of Motor Vehicles regarding the provisions of subsection (c) of this section does not constitute negligence, nor may compliance or noncompliance with the requirements of this section be admissible as evidence of negligence in any civil or criminal action.
The board is authorized to employ such service personnel, including substitutes, as is deemed necessary for meeting the needs of the county school system: Provided, That the board may not employ a number of such personnel whose minimum monthly salary under section eight-a, article four, of this chapter is specified as pay grade "H", which number exceeds the number employed by the board on March 1, 1988.
Effective July 1, 1988, a county board shall not employ for the first time any person who has not obtained a high school diploma or general educational development certificate (GED) or who is not enrolled in an approved adult education course by the date of employment in preparation for obtaining a GED: Provided, That such employment is contingent upon continued enrollment or successful completion of the GED program.
Before entering upon their duties service personnel shall execute with the board a written contract which shall be in the following form:
"COUNTY BOARD OF EDUCATION
SERVICE PERSONNEL CONTRACT OF EMPLOYMENT
THIS (Probationary or Continuing) CONTRACT OF EMPLOYMENT, made and entered into this _________ day of _____________, 19____, by and between THE BOARD OF EDUCATION OF THE COUNTY OF _______________, a corporation, hereinafter called the 'Board,' and (Name and Social Security Number of Employee), of (Mailing Address), hereinafter called the 'Employee.'
WITNESSETH, that whereas, at a lawful meeting of the board of Education of the County of ___________ held at the offices of said Board, in the City of _____________________, ________________ County, West Virginia, on the ______ day of ___________________, 19____, the Employee was duly hired and appointed for employment as a (Job Classification) at (Place of Assignment) for the school year commencing __________ for the employment term and at the salary and upon the terms hereinafter set out.
NOW, THEREFORE, pursuant to said employment, Board and Employee mutually agree as follows:
(1) The Employee is employed by the board as a (Job Classification) at (Place of Assignment) for the school year or remaining part thereof commencing _____________, 19_____. The period of employment is _______ days at an annual salary of $_______ at the rate of $________ per month.
(2) The Board hereby certifies that the Employee's employment has been duly approved by the board and will be a matter of the board's minute records.
(3) The services to be performed by the Employee shall be such services as are prescribed for the job classification set out above in paragraph (1) and as defined in Section 8, Article 4, Chapter 18A of the Code of West Virginia, as amended.
(4) The Employee may be dismissed at any time for immorality, incompetency, cruelty, insubordination, intemperance or willful neglect of duty pursuant to the provisions of Section 8, Article 2, Chapter 18A of the Code of West Virginia, as amended.
(5) The Superintendent of the ____________ County Board of Education, subject to the approval of the board, may transfer and assign the Employee in the manner provided by Section 7, Article 2, Chapter 18A of the Code of West Virginia, as amended.
(6) This contract shall at all times be subject to any and all existing laws, or such laws as may hereafter be lawfully enacted, and such laws shall be a part of this contract.
(7) This contract may be terminated or modified at any time by the mutual consent of the board and the Employee.
(8) This contract must be signed and returned to the board at its address of __________________________________ within thirty days after being received by the Employee.
(9) By signing this contract the Employee accepts employment upon the terms herein set out.
WITNESS the following signatures as of the day, month and year first above written:
_____________, (President, ______ County Board of Education) _____________, (Secretary, ______ County Board of Education) _____________, (Employee)"
The use of this form shall not be interpreted to authorize boards to discontinue any employee's contract status with the board or rescind any rights, privileges or benefits held under contract or otherwise by any employee prior to the effective date of this section.
Each contract of employment shall be designated as a probationary or continuing contract. The employment of service personnel shall be made a matter of minute record. The employee shall return the contract of employment to the county board of education within thirty days after receipt or otherwise he shall forfeit his right to employment.
Under such regulation and policy as may be established by the county board, service personnel selected and trained for teacher-aide classifications, such as monitor aide, clerical aide, classroom aide and general aide, shall work under the direction of the principal and teachers to whom assigned.
Each county board is authorized to pay, entirely from local funds, $500 or less to any service employee, or to any professional employee who is not a classroom teacher, who gives written notice to the county board on or before March 1 of the school year of his or her retirement from employment with the board at the conclusion of the school year.
After three years of acceptable employment, each service person who enters into a new contract of employment with the board shall be granted continuing contract status. A service person holding continuing contract status with one county shall be granted continuing contract status with any other county upon completion of one year of acceptable employment if such employment is during the next succeeding school year or immediately following an approved leave of absence which extends no more than one year. The continuing contract of any such employee shall remain in full force and effect except as modified by mutual consent of the school board and the employee, unless and until terminated with written notice, stating cause or causes, to the employee, by a majority vote of the full membership of the board on or before May 1 of the then current year, or by written resignation of the employee on or before that date. The affected employee has the right of a hearing before the board, if requested, before final action is taken by the board upon the termination of such employment.
Those employees who have completed three years of acceptable employment as of the effective date of this legislation shall be granted continuing contract status.
In the assignment of position or duties of a service person under a continuing contract, the board may provide for released time of a service person for any special professional or governmental assignment without jeopardizing the contractual rights of such service or any other rights, privileges or benefits under the provisions of this chapter. Released time shall be provided for any service person while serving as a member of the Legislature during any duly constituted session of that body and its interim and statutory committees and commissions without jeopardizing his or her contractual rights or any other rights, privileges, benefits or accrual of experience for placement on the state minimum salary schedule in the following school year under the provisions of this chapter, board policy and law. For the purposes of this section, service person is the singular of service personnel as defined in section one, article one of this chapter.
§18A-2-7. Assignment, transfer, promotion, demotion, suspension and recommendation of dismissal of school personnel by superintendent; preliminary notice of transfer; hearing on the transfer; proof required.
(a) The superintendent, subject only to approval of the board, may assign, transfer, promote, demote or suspend school personnel and recommend their dismissal pursuant to provisions of this chapter. However, an employee shall be notified in writing by the superintendent on or before April 1 if he or she is being considered for transfer or to be transferred. Only those employees whose consideration for transfer or intended transfer is based upon known or expected circumstances which will require the transfer of employees shall be considered for transfer or intended for transfer and the notification shall be limited to only those employees. Any teacher or employee who desires to protest the proposed transfer may request in writing a statement of the reasons for the proposed transfer. The statement of reasons shall be delivered to the teacher or employee within ten days of the receipt of the request. Within ten days of the receipt of the statement of the reasons, the teacher or employee may make written demand upon the superintendent for a hearing on the proposed transfer before the county board. The hearing on the proposed transfer shall be held on or before May 1. At the hearing, the reasons for the proposed transfer must be shown.
(b) The superintendent at a meeting of the board on or before May 1 shall furnish in writing to the board a list of teachers and other employees to be considered for transfer and subsequent assignment for the next ensuing school year. An employee who was not provided notice and an opportunity for a hearing pursuant to subsection (a) of this section may not be included on the list. All other teachers and employees not so listed shall be considered as reassigned to the positions or jobs held at the time of this meeting. The list of those recommended for transfer shall be included in the minute record of the meeting and all those so listed shall be notified in writing and shall be delivered within ten days following the board meeting, with written receipt notification documented by the superintendent, and shall state that the person is being recommended for transfer and subsequent assignment and the reasons therefor.
(c) The superintendent's authority to suspend school personnel shall be temporary only pending a hearing upon charges filed by the superintendent with the county board and the period of suspension may not exceed thirty days unless extended by order of the board.
(d) The provisions of this section respecting hearing upon notice of transfer are not applicable in emergency situations where a school building becomes damaged or destroyed through an unforeseeable act and which act necessitates a transfer of the school personnel because of the aforementioned condition of the building.
(e) Notwithstanding this section or any provision of this code, when actual student enrollment in a grade level or program, unforeseen on or before May 1 of the preceding school year, permits the assignment of fewer teachers or service personnel to or within a school under any pupil-teacher ratio, class size or caseload standard established in section eighteen-a, article five, chapter eighteen of this code or any policy of the state board, the superintendent, with board approval, may reassign the surplus personnel to another school or to another grade level or program within the school if needed there to comply with any such pupil-teacher ratio, class size or caseload standard.
(1) Before any reassignment may occur pursuant to this subsection, notice shall be provided to the employee and the employee shall be provided an opportunity to appear before the county board to state the reasons for his or her objections, if any, prior to the board voting on the reassignment.
(2) Except as otherwise provided in subdivision (1) of this subsection, the reassignment may be made without following the notice and hearing provisions of this section, and at any time during the school year when the conditions of this subsection are met: Provided, That the reassignment may not occur after the last day of the second school month.
(3) A professional employee reassigned under this subsection shall be the least senior of the surplus professional personnel who holds certification or licensure to perform the duties at the other school or at the grade level or program within the school.
(4) A service employee reassigned under this subsection shall be the least senior of the surplus personnel who holds the same classification or multiclassification needed to perform the duties at the other school or at the grade level or program within the same school.
(5) No school employee's annual contract term, compensation or benefits shall be changed as a result of a reassignment under this subsection.
The state board shall establish and maintain a statewide job bank to assist the recruitment and reemployment of experienced professional personnel whose employment with county boards has been terminated because of a reduction in force. The job bank shall consist of two parts for each county: (1) A list of the names, qualifications and contact information of all professional personnel who have been terminated because of a reduction in force, except personnel who have requested in writing that they not be listed in the job bank; and (2) a list of professional positions for which the county is seeking applicants. The job bank shall be accessible electronically to each county and to individuals on a read only basis, except that each county shall have the capability of editing information for the county and shall be responsible for maintaining current information on the county lists.
§18A-2-7b. Limitations on voluntary transfer of school employees to posted vacant position after twentieth day prior to beginning of instructional term.
(a) The Legislature finds that it is not in the best interest of the students particularly in the elementary grades to have multiple teachers for any one grade level or course during the instructional term. Therefore, it is the intent of the Legislature that the filling of positions through transfers of personnel from one professional position to another after the twentieth day prior to the beginning of the instructional term should be kept to a minimum in accordance with the following:
(1) After the twentieth day prior to the beginning of the instructional term, no person employed and assigned to a professional position may transfer to another professional position in the county during that instructional term unless the person holding that position does not have valid certification;
(2) The person may apply for any posted, vacant positions with the successful applicant assuming the position at the beginning of the next instructional term;
(3) Professional personnel who have been on an approved leave of absence may fill these vacancies upon their return from the approved leave of absence; and
(4) The county board, upon recommendation of the superintendent may fill a position before the next instructional term when it is determined to be in the best interest of the students.
(b) The Legislature finds that it is not in the best interest of students with autism or with an exceptionality whose IEP requires one-on-one services, or students in the early childhood years, to have multiple teachers, mentors, aides, paraprofessionals, interpreters or any combination thereof during the instructional term. Therefore, it is the intent of the Legislature that after the twentieth day prior to the beginning of the instructional term, filling positions through transfers of personnel from one position to another be kept to a minimum for autism mentors and aides who work with students with autism and for paraprofessionals, interpreters, early childhood classroom assistant teachers and aides who work with students with exceptionalities whose IEPs require one-on-one services, in accordance with the following:
(1) After the twentieth day prior to the beginning of the instructional term, a service person may not transfer to another position in the county during that instructional term, unless he or she does not have valid certification, if the service person is employed and assigned as an autism mentor or aide who works with students with autism, or as a paraprofessional, interpreter, early childhood classroom assistant teacher, or aide who works with a student with an exceptionality whose IEP requires one-on-one services;
(2) The aide, autism mentor, paraprofessional, interpreter or early childhood classroom assistant teacher may apply for any posted, vacant position with the successful applicant assuming the position at the beginning of the next instructional term; and
(3) The county board, upon recommendation of the superintendent, may fill a position before the beginning of the next instructional term when it is determined to be in the best interest of the students.
(c) Except as provided in subsection (b) of this section, after the twentieth day prior to the beginning of the instructional term, a service person may transfer to another position of employment one time only during any one half of the instructional term, unless otherwise mutually agreed upon by the service person and the county superintendent, or the superintendent's designee, subject to county board approval. During the first year of employment as a service person, a service person may not transfer to another position of employment during the first one half of the instructional term unless mutually agreed upon by the service person and county superintendent, subject to county board approval, except as follows:
(1) Upon return from an approved leave of absence, a service person may fill a vacant position for which he or she is qualified or holds valid certification;
(2) A service person may apply for a posted, vacant position at any time. The successful applicant for the position may not assume the position until the beginning of the next one half of the instructional term; and
(3) Extracurricular assignments for school bus operators pursuant to section sixteen, article four of this chapter are exempt from the requirements of this subsection.
(a) Notwithstanding any other provisions of law, a board may suspend or dismiss any person in its employment at any time for: Immorality, incompetency, cruelty, insubordination, intemperance, willful neglect of duty, unsatisfactory performance, the conviction of a felony or a guilty plea or a plea of nolo contendere to a felony charge.
(b) A charge of unsatisfactory performance shall not be made except as the result of an employee performance evaluation pursuant to section twelve of this article. The charges shall be stated in writing served upon the employee within two days of presentation of the charges to the board.
(c) The affected employee shall be given an opportunity, within five days of receiving the written notice, to request, in writing, a level three hearing and appeals pursuant to the provisions of article two, chapter six-c of this code, except that dismissal for the conviction of a felony or guilty plea or plea of nolo contendere to a felony charge is not by itself a grounds for a grievance proceeding. An employee charged with the commission of a felony may be reassigned to duties which do not involve direct interaction with pupils pending final disposition of the charges.
The superintendent at a meeting of the board on or before May 1 of each year shall provide in writing to the board a list of all probationary teachers that he or she recommends to be rehired for the next ensuing school year. The board shall act upon the superintendent's recommendations at that meeting in accordance with section one of this article. The board at this same meeting shall also act upon the retention of other probationary employees as provided in sections two and five of this article. Any such probationary teacher or other probationary employee who is not rehired by the board at that meeting shall be notified in writing, by certified mail, return receipt requested, to such persons' last known addresses within ten days following said board meeting, of their not having been rehired or not having been recommended for rehiring.
Any probationary teacher who receives notice that he or she has not been recommended for rehiring or other probationary employee who has not been reemployed may within ten days after receiving the written notice request a statement of the reasons for not having been rehired and may request a hearing before the board. The hearing shall be held at the next regularly scheduled board of education meeting or a special meeting of the board called within thirty days of the request for hearing. At the hearing, the reasons for the nonrehiring must be shown.
Upon the recommendation of the county superintendent of schools, the county board of education shall employ and assign, through written contract, public school principals who shall supervise the management and the operation of the school or schools to which they are assigned. Such principals shall hold valid administrative certificates appropriate for their assignments.
Beginning on July 1, 1994, the prerequisites for issuance of an administrative certificate for principals shall include that the person has successfully completed at least six credit hours of approved course work in public school management techniques at an accredited institution of higher education and has successfully completed education and training in evaluation skills through the center for professional development, or equivalent education and training in evaluation skills approved by the state board.
Under the supervision of the superintendent and in accordance with the rules and regulations of the county board of education, the principal shall assume administrative and instructional supervisory responsibility for the planning, management, operation and evaluation of the total educational program of the school or schools to which he is assigned.
The principal may submit recommendations to the superintendent regarding the appointment, assignment, promotion, transfer and dismissal of all personnel assigned to the school or schools under said principal's control. Such recommendation shall be submitted in writing as prescribed by the superintendent.
The principal shall perform such other duties as may be assigned by the superintendent pursuant to the rules and regulations of the county board of education.
Upon recommendation of the county superintendent of schools, the county board of education shall, when needed, employ and assign, through written contract, assistant principals who shall work under the direction of the school principal. Such assistant principals shall hold valid administrative certificates appropriate for their assignments.
On or before July 1, 1989, and continuing thereafter, each county board of education shall assign a certificated principal to each school and no principal may be assigned more than two schools: Provided, That where enrollment exceeds four hundred students there will be no additional schools assigned to that principal.
No principal assigned to more than one school may be assigned any teaching duties except on a temporary emergency basis. No county shall have more teaching principalships or multischool principalships than was present on January 1, 1988.
On or before July 1, 1993, and continuing thereafter, each county board of education shall employ a full-time supervising principal at each school whose net enrollment equals or exceeds one hundred seventy students. A principal assigned to a school with a net enrollment equal to or greater than one hundred seventy students may not be assigned any teaching duties except on a temporary emergency basis. When a principal is assigned on a full-time basis to a school whose net enrollment is more than seventy-five students but less than one hundred seventy students, such principal shall have a minimum of twenty hours per week for nonteaching duties. A principal assigned on a full-time basis to a school with seventy-five students or less shall have a minimum of ten hours per week for nonteaching duties: Provided, That nothing in this section prohibits a county board of education from assigning a full-time supervising principal to a school with a net enrollment of less than one hundred seventy students.
Nothing contained in this section shall be construed to reduce or limit the rights and privileges of principals and assistant principals as teachers under the provisions of section one, article one, chapter eighteen of the Code of West Virginia as amended; section one, article one, chapter eighteen-a; and other provisions of this code: Provided, That on or before July 1, 1993, the state Board of Education shall not deny a county board of education the right to place a principal in a school with less than one hundred seventy students.
In case a medical or physical examination of any school board employee or qualified applicant who becomes an employee of the board for any school position is required by a Board of Education or by any administrator, department or agency of government which has authority to require such examination, the cost shall be paid in full by the employer.
It shall be unlawful for any Board of Education to require any employee or applicant who becomes an employee of the board to pay the cost of any medical or physical examination as a condition of employment.
The provisions of this section shall be effective from January 1, 1975.
If an employee shall appeal to a circuit court an adverse decision of either a county board of education or of a hearing examiner rendered in a grievance or other proceeding pursuant to provisions of chapters eighteen and eighteen-a of this code and such person shall substantially prevail, the adverse party or parties shall be liable to such employee, upon final judgment or order, for court costs, and for reasonable attorney's fees, to be set by the court, for representing such employee in all administrative hearings and before the circuit court and the Supreme Court of Appeals, and shall be further liable to such employee for any court reporter's costs incurred during any such administrative hearings or court proceedings: Provided, That in no event shall such attorney's fees be awarded in excess of a total of $1,000 for the administrative hearings and circuit court proceedings nor an additional $1,000 for supreme court proceedings: Provided, however, That the requirements of this section shall not be construed to limit the school employee's right to recover reasonable attorney's fees in a mandamus proceeding brought under section eight, article four, chapter eighteen-a of this code.
§18A-2-12. Performance evaluations of school personnel; professional personnel evaluation process; restrictions on requirements on lesson plans and record keeping by classroom teachers.
(a) The state board shall adopt a written system for the evaluation of the employment performance of personnel, which system shall be applied uniformly by county boards in the evaluation of the employment performance of personnel employed by the board.
(b) The system adopted by the state board for evaluating the employment performance of professional personnel shall be in accordance with the provisions of this section.
(c) For purposes of this section, "professional personnel", "professional" or "professionals", means professional personnel and other professional employees, as defined in section one, article one of this chapter but does not include classroom teachers, principals and assistant principals subject to the evaluation processes established pursuant to section two, article three-c of this chapter.
(d) In developing the professional personnel performance evaluation system, and amendments thereto, the state board shall consult with the Center for Professional Development created in article three-a of this chapter. The center shall participate actively with the state board in developing written standards for evaluation which clearly specify satisfactory performance and the criteria to be used to determine whether the performance of each professional meets those standards.
(e) The performance evaluation system shall contain, but not be limited to, the following information:
(1) The professional personnel positions to be evaluated;
(2) The frequency and duration of the evaluations, which shall be of such frequency and duration as to insure the collection of a sufficient amount of data from which reliable conclusions and findings may be drawn, but at least annually;
(3) The evaluation shall serve the following purposes:
(A) Serve as a basis for the improvement of the performance of the personnel in their assigned duties;
(B) Provide an indicator of satisfactory performance for individual professionals;
(C) Serve as documentation for a dismissal on the grounds of unsatisfactory performance; and
(D) Serve as a basis for programs to increase the professional growth and development of professional personnel;
(4) The standards for satisfactory performance for professional personnel and the criteria to be used to determine whether the performance of each professional meets those standards and other criteria for evaluation for each professional position evaluated. Professional personnel, as appropriate, shall demonstrate competency in the knowledge and implementation of the technology standards adopted by the state board. If a professional fails to demonstrate competency in the knowledge and implementation of these standards, he or she will be subject to an improvement plan to correct the deficiencies; and
(5) Provisions for a written improvement plan, which shall be specific as to what improvements, if any, are needed in the performance of the professional and shall clearly set forth recommendations for improvements, including recommendations for additional education and training during the professional's recertification or license renewal process.
(f) A professional whose performance is considered to be unsatisfactory shall be given notice of deficiencies. A remediation plan to correct deficiencies shall be developed by the employing county board and the professional. The professional shall be given a reasonable period of time for remediation of the deficiencies and shall receive a statement of the resources and assistance available for the purposes of correcting the deficiencies.
(g) No person may evaluate professional personnel for the purposes of this section or professional educator for the purposes of section two, article three-c of this chapter unless the person has an administrative certificate issued by the state superintendent and has successfully completed education and training in evaluation skills through the center for professional development, or equivalent education training approved by the state board, which will enable the person to make fair, professional, and credible evaluations of the personnel whom the person is responsible for evaluating. After July 1, 1994, no person may be issued an administrative certificate or have an administrative certificate renewed unless the state board determines that the person has successfully completed education and training in evaluation skills through the center for professional development or equivalent education and training approved by the state board.
(h) Any professional whose performance evaluation includes a written improvement plan shall be given an opportunity to improve his or her performance through the implementation of the plan. If the next performance evaluation shows that the professional is now performing satisfactorily, no further action may be taken concerning the original performance evaluation. If the evaluation shows that the professional is still not performing satisfactorily, the evaluator either shall make additional recommendations for improvement or may recommend the dismissal of the professional in accordance with the provisions of section eight of this article.
(i) This subsection applies to all classroom teachers irrespective of the process under which they are evaluated.
(1) Lesson plans are intended to serve as a daily guide for teachers and substitutes for the orderly presentation of the curriculum. Lesson plans may not be used as a substitute for observations by an administrator in the performance evaluation process. A classroom teacher, as defined in section one, article one of this chapter, may not be required to post his or her lesson plans on the Internet or otherwise make them available to students and parents or to include in his or her lesson plans any of the following:
(A) Teach and reteach strategies;
(B) Write to learn activities;
(C) Cultural diversity;
(D) Color coding; or
(E) Any other similar items which are not required to serve as a guide to the teacher or substitute for daily instruction;
(2) The Legislature finds that classroom teachers must be free of unnecessary paper work so that they can focus their time on instruction. Therefore, classroom teachers may not be required to keep records or logs of routine contacts with parents or guardians;
(3) Nothing in this subsection may be construed to prohibit classroom teachers from voluntarily posting material on the Internet; and
(4) Nothing in article three-c of this chapter may be construed to negate the provisions of this subsection.
§18A-2-12a. Statement of policy and practice for the county boards and school personnel to minimize possible disagreement and misunderstanding.
(a) The Legislature makes the following findings:
(1) The effective and efficient operation of the public schools depends upon the development of harmonious and cooperative relationships between county boards and school personnel;
(2) Each group has a fundamental role to perform in the educational program and each has certain separate, distinct and clearly defined areas of responsibility as provided in chapters eighteen and eighteen-a of this code; and
(3) There are instances, particularly involving questions of wages, salaries and conditions of work, that are subject to disagreement and misunderstanding between county boards and school personnel and may not be so clearly set forth.
(b) The purpose of this section is to establish a statement of policy and practice for the county boards and school personnel, as follows, in order to minimize possible disagreement and misunderstanding:
(1) County boards, subject to the provisions of this chapter, chapter eighteen of this code and the policies and rules of the state board, are responsible for the management of the schools within their respective counties. The powers and responsibilities of county boards in setting policy and in providing management are broad, but not absolute;
(2) The school personnel shares the responsibility for putting into effect the policies and practices approved by the county board that employs them and the school personnel also have certain rights and responsibilities as provided in statute, and in their contracts;
(3) School personnel are entitled to meet together, form associations and work in concert to improve their circumstances and the circumstances of the schools;
(4) County boards and school personnel can most effectively discharge their total responsibilities to the public and to each other by establishing clear and open lines of communication. School personnel should be encouraged to make suggestions, proposals and recommendations through appropriate channels to the county board. Decisions of the county board concerning the suggestions, proposals and recommendations should be communicated to the school personnel clearly and openly;
(5) Official meetings of county boards are public meetings. School personnel are free to attend the meetings without fear of reprisal and should be encouraged to attend;
(6) All school personnel are entitled to know how well they are fulfilling their responsibilities and should be offered the opportunity of open and honest evaluations of their performance on a regular basis and in accordance with the provisions of section twelve of this article. All school personnel are entitled to opportunities to improve their job performance prior to the termination or transfer of their services. Decisions concerning the promotion, demotion, transfer or termination of employment of school personnel, other than those for lack of need or governed by specific statutory provisions unrelated to performance, should be based upon the evaluations, and not upon factors extraneous thereto. All school personnel are entitled to due process in matters affecting their employment, transfer, demotion or promotion; and
(7) All official and enforceable personnel policies of a county board must be written and made available to its employees.
The following guidelines are optional guidelines that county boards may use when scheduling full-day and half-day cooks:
Number of Number of Average Number of
Meals Cooks Meals Served Per
Cook's Hours Worked
1-90 1 12.00
91-135 1.5 12.00
136-180 2 12.00
181-225 2.5 12.00
226-270 3 12.00
271-315 3.5 12.00
316-360 4 12.00
361-405 4.5 12.00
406-450 5 12.00
451-495 5.5 12.00
496-540 6 12.00
541-585 6.5 12.00
586-630 7 12.00
631-675 7.5 12.00
676-720 8 12.00
721-765 8.5 12.00
766-810 9 12.00
811-855 9.5 12.00
856-900 10 12.00
A meal prepared for a school lunch shall be established as a whole meal. Other meals shall be equal to three fourths of a school lunch meal.
A county board shall reimburse any school personnel for each mile traveled when the employee is required to use a personal motor vehicle in the course of employment. The county board shall reimburse at the same rate for all employees in that county. The rate of reimbursement shall be at least the lesser of, and not more than the greater of, the federal standard mileage rate and the rate authorized by the travel management rule of the Department of Administration.