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A161 - Paid Professional Hours for Educators

 Administrative Letter A161 Paid Professional Hours for Educators - Approved 5-20-22

House Bill 396, Utah Code 53F-7-202. Reads as follows:

Paid professional hours for educators.
Provides additional paid professional hours to the following educators:
(a) general education and special education teachers;
(b) counselors;
(c) school administration*;
(d) school specialists;
(e) student support;
(f) school psychologists;
(g) speech language pathologists; and
(h) audiologists.
Paid professional hours can be used to:
(a) provide educators with the knowledge and skills necessary to enable students to succeed in a well-rounded education and to meet the challenging state academic standards; and
(b) may include activities that:
(i) improve and increase an educator's:
(A) knowledge of the academic subjects the educator teaches;
(B) time to plan and prepare daily lessons based on student needs;
(C) understanding of how students learn; and
(D) ability to analyze student work and achievement from multiple sources, including how to adjust instructional strategies, assessments, and materials based on the analysis;
(ii) are an integral part of broad school-wide and LEA-wide educational improvement plans;
(iii) allow personalized plans for each educator to address the educator's specific needs identified in observation or other feedback;
(iv) advance educator understanding of:
(A) effective and evidence-based instructional strategies; and
(B) strategies for improving student academic achievement or substantially increasing the knowledge and teaching skills of educators;
(v) are aligned with, and directly related to, academic goals of the school or LEA; and
(vi) include instruction in the use of data and assessments to inform and instruct classroom practice.
(4) An educator shall:
(a) before the first day of instruction in a given school year, create a plan, in consultation with the educator's principal, on how the educator plans to use paid professional hours provided under this section during the school year; and
(b) before the end of a given school year, provide a written statement to the educator's principal of how the educator used paid professional hours provided under this section during the school year.
WCSD District Procedure:
  • Using the attached form, have each educator outline his/her Plan for Paid Professional Hours.
  • The Educator must submit the completed plan to their Principal*, no later than August 10, 2022.
  • The Principal should review the plan and approve if it follows the statutory guidelines (listed above) by signing the form.  
  • After the form has been approved and signed, the Principal should keep a copy for school records and give the original to the educator.  (The educator is responsible for maintaining the signed form.)
  • Before the end of the 2023 school year, the educator must return the form with their written statement and signature to their Principal certifying that they have completed the project.  
  • The educator must certify that they have worked at least 32 hours outside of contract time.  (Part time employees will need to certify they have completed the fractional equivalent to 32 hours. i.e. .5 FTE must work 16 hours)  
  • Unless required by the State, we do not plan to collect time cards for hours worked. The employee's certification should be sufficient.
  • Principals should review the project completion and sign for payment approval. 
  • Principals must submit the completed, signed, and approved form and written statement to the Payroll Department for payment by June 1, 2023 
  • Employees who complete the project and are eligible for payment under HB 396 will receive a lump sum payment in their June 2023 paycheck. 
  • Part time employees will only be paid the FTE fractional equivalent of their contract.  (.5 FTE will need to work 16 and be paid for 16 hours).
*Principals should submit their Plan for Paid Professional Hours to their assigned Executive Director or Assistant Superintendent.

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