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Leaves of Absence from Work

There are many different types of leaves.  If at any time you have questions or need help navigating the process, feel free to connect with our District Executive Officer (DEO) who can support you through the process.

Family Caregiver Lave

Compassionate Care or Family Care Leave

There are two different options for leaves for taking care of ill members of the family. You need to decide based on the criteria for what will meet all of the needs for your situation:

1. Family Caregiver leave
A Family Caregiver Leave is an unpaid, job protected leave of up to 8 weeks per calendar year for each individual, to provide care or support to a specified family member
where a qualified health practitioner has issued a certificate stating that the individual has a serious medical condition. Provide your Principal/Manager a written plans or include in the comments, the scheduled leave dates if not consecutive. For the purpose of this leave, ‘weeks’ means a period of 7 days beginning on Sunday and ending on Saturday. Therefore, the 8 weeks are counted from the Sunday of the first week off to the Saturday of the last week off. 

Required: Certificate/note from qualified health practitioner

2. Compassionate care leave

A Compassionate Care Leave is an unpaid, job-protected leave of up to 28 weeks within a 52 week period.   A Compassionate Care Leave may be taken to provide care and support to a specified family member for whom a qualified health practitioner has issued a certificate/note indicating that the family member has a serious medical condition and there is a significant risk of death within a specified 26 week period. This is a Legislative Leave covered by the Employment Standards Act.

Required: Certificate/note from qualified health practitioner. 

Family members that qualify are:

  • the employee's spouse (including same-sex spouse)

  • a parent, step-parent or foster parent of the employee or the employee's spouse

  • a child, step-child or foster child of the employee or the employee's spouse

  • a brother, step-brother, sister, or step-sister of the employee

  • a grandparent or step-grandparent of the employee or of the employee's spouse

  • a grandchild or step-grandchild of the employee or of the employee's spouse

  • a brother-in-law, step-brother-in-law, sister-in-law or step-sister-in-law of the employee

  • a son-in-law or daughter-in-law of the employee or of the employee's spouse

  • an uncle or aunt of the employee or of the employee's spouse

  • a nephew or niece of the employee or of the employee's spouse

  • the spouse of the employee's grandchild, uncle, aunt, nephew or niece

Care or support includes, but is not limited to providing psychological or emotional support; arranging for care by a third-party provider; or directly providing or participating in the care of the family member.


These are unpaid leaves, meaning you are not using your sick leave, but they are statutory, meaning you can get EI while you are off work and use the SEB (supplemental employee benefit) to top up the leave for up to 8 weeks. The names are not exactly the same, but the benefits apply.

Employment Insurance (EI)

The Maximum EI payment is $650 per week (as of Jan 2023)

For more information on eligibility and waiting periods, please contact your EI office at or call 1-800-206-7218 and press “0” to speak with an attendant.


Supplemental Employment Benefit (SEB) plan

The SEB plan covers 8 weeks of top-up of your EI to full salary for the leave. It is a reimbursement plan that is made by direct deposit into your account. 

The lump sum payment is made up of the following:

• Providing the one-week waiting period is served for Compassionate Care or Critical Illness benefits, the employee will be paid 100% of their salary.

• For the following seven weeks the employee’s E.I. benefits will be supplemented up to 100% of their regular earnings.

Details from the collective agreement are in C8.1 Family Medical Leave or Critical Illness Leave 

To Apply:

On the BWW you would access the e-form by going to:

  • employee self-serve

  • e-forms

  • long term leave request

  • New request 

  • choose leave type from the drop down menu


Deferred Salary Plan

Applications are to be reviewed and signed by the Principal/Manager and Superintendent and received by Human Resource Services no later than January 31 of the school year prior to the year in which the applicant wishes to begin the salary deferral.


Board FAQ (BWW)

Application Form (BWW)


Disability Management Program

The goal of the OSSTF Disability Management Program (DMP) in conjunction with the YRDSB is to assist members with advice towards taking time off work for themselves, for work related accommodations, and to support members in their return to work. 


Where a return to work is not possible, we can provide information in regard to sick leave, short-term disability (STD), E.I. sickness benefits, and Long Term Disability (LTD). 

Our current collective agreement allotment is as follows:

  • 11 personal illness days paid at 100%

  • 120 short-term disability (STD) days paid at 90%. When your 11 personal illness days are used up, you automatically roll over to your short-term disability days.

  • Top-up days - Unused personal illness days from the previous year, that can be used to top up your short-term disability days to 100% pay. One top-up day equates to 10 STD days being paid at 100%.

  • If your absence carries over from one school year to the next, there is NOT a refresh of your entire sick leave bank until you return to full-time. If you are working part-time the following year, there is a blend of your sick leave benefits.


Members that are absent up to 19 consecutive days:

    • are required to provide their Principal with a Standard Medical Certificate  supporting their inability to work for medical reasons. There is no requirement for diagnosis/prognosis, only that you are under the care of a treating doctor.

    • alternatively, if necessary, members can provide a note from their treating doctor indicating that they were seen, assessed and deemed medically unable to work for the period of the absence. 

    • information is used by your Principal to verify your absence for personal illness reasons and will not be retained at the school/work location.


Members that are absent for 20 consecutive days or longer:

    • are required a Functional Abilities Report (FAR) be completed by the physician who is treating the medical condition rendering you disabled from working.  

    • the FAR can be accessed by emailing and stating in the email that you will be seeing your doctor in the coming days and are requesting the Functional Abilities Report.

    • please note that the Board will reimburse the cost of up to $25.00 associated with the completion of the FAR.   


As part of our long-term disability (LTD) policy, the Board is required to notify OTIP (our LTD administrator) of your absence from work, and notify the OSSTF DEO after 15 consecutive working days missed.  

  • If you think there is any possibility of exhausting your 131 sick leave days (11 personal illness + 120 short term disability days) you should apply to Long Term Disability (LTD) within 3 months of your sick leave running out. You will get a package from the Board with the instruction on how to apply for LTD.

  • During your leave, you should expect a call for an offer of Early Intervention Services from a member of the Early Intervention Team at OTIP.   Should it be appropriate, OTIP will discuss with you your health situation and your doctor’s recommendations.   

  • Also available, as part of your LTD plan is LifeWorks, a confidential psychosocial assistance service that provides up to 12 hours of counselling per school year (Sept thru August) for you and your family (spouse and dependent children). 1-800-668-0193

  • Go to: Username: Lifeworks1 Password: @OTIPTL123


When you are feeling better and ready to return to work (RTW) a new Functional Abilities Report (FAR) must be completed by the specialist who is treating the medical condition rendering you disabled from working. Please note the following:

  • the FAR can be completed by anyone that is identified in our benefit plan that you can get reimbursement for such as any MD, physiotherapist, psychologist etc.

  • it is important that the FAR be provided at least 10 working days (2 weeks) prior to your return to work date.

  • before you are able to return to work the FAR will be reviewed by the Board Disability Case Manager to determine if a RTW meeting is required and if accommodations are required. If accommodations are required, your Case Manager will coordinate a RTW meeting to review your restrictions and to develop an individualized return to work plan with your principal, the OSSTF DEO and yourself.

  • restrictions impacting your ability to perform your duties are shared with your principal to develop the individualized RTW plan and to ensure that medically required supports are in place for you.  No medical information is shared with your principal.


Pregnancy and Parental Leave

The package of information available below is intended to assist members in preparing for a maternity, parental or adoptive leave by providing an overview of the rules and procedures that govern these leaves. The material has been organized according to topics to make it easier for you to find the specific information you may require.


Please check with the District 16 T/OT Office regarding any questions you may have. Federal and Provincial legislation, the terms of our collective agreement (CA) and YRDSB policies may have changed since this document was produced, so please make sure you verify the information prior to making any decisions. Updated legislation is also available through government websites.


It is strongly advised that you keep a complete record of arrangements made and documents submitted, including proof of the date submitted. Every effort should be made to obtain written confirmation.


OSSTF District 16 T/OT Maternity, Parental, & Adoption Leave Guide 

Other Related Websites

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