Staffing & Human Resources
Accurate as of October 20, 2020
Annual Professional Performance Review 3012-Part D Mandatory Requirements
The Nassau BOCES has made every effort to incorporate its currently approved APPR plans into re-opening under an in-person, remote, or hybrid instructional model.
The Nassau BOCES Agency has a current, approved APPR plan in place and all efforts will be made to comply with the approved plan. In order to plan effectively for the reopening of our schools and comply with our approved APPR plan, we have devised a strategy to cover the three school reopening possibilities as they relate to observations and evaluations. The three possible reopening include: In-Person, Hybrid (mix of in-person and remote), and Remote.
- In-Person - If the Agency has an in-person reopening, there will be no change in the APPR process involving observations and evaluations of teaching staff. Observations and evaluations will be carried out in accordance with the approved APPR plan and include the use of the Frontline system (OASYS) for monitoring teaching and professional growth using the Danielson rubric.
- Hybrid - If the Agency reopens in a Hybrid model, the tenets of the APPR plan will not change per se. The plan will still include three formal observations and one unannounced observation for probationary teachers and one formal observation and one unannounced for tenured teachers. However, the way in which teachers will be observed will change. Every effort will be made to observe teachers while they are in an in-person environment. However, it may not be entirely possible due to time constraints to do all observations in person. Therefore, teachers will be observed in a virtual environment. During the recertification training, administrators will review the expectations of observations done in a virtual environment versus an in-class environment. The Danielson rubric will be for all observation evaluations. Administrators will arrange with the teacher a date to be observed in either an in-person classroom observation or a virtual observation. Whether the observation is virtual or in-person, the administrator will conduct a pre-observation conference so that the teacher can present the lesson. Both the pre-observation and post-observation may be conducted virtually. Teachers will be asked to share any virtual classroom contact information (Delivery platform, classroom ID number and/or passwords to enter the classroom virtually) with the principal or observing administrator when needed. In addition, administration will be encouraged to discuss technology issues during pre-observation meetings and look to foster remedies to assist. Observations done in a virtual environment that have technology issues will not have the teacher’s observation score negatively impacted. Post observations will be conducted to follow-up on the observation and provide any recommendations to the teacher for future improvement.
- Remote - If the Agency reopens for an extended period in a remote environment, teachers will be observed virtually as indicated in the above hybrid reopening. The Danielson rubric will be utilized for all observation evaluations. The observing administrators will arrange a virtual observation date with the teacher. Unannounced observations will also be completed by virtual observation. Building administrators will have teachers’ synchronous schedules. Teachers will be asked to share any virtual classroom contact information (Delivery platform, classroom ID number and/or passwords to enter the classroom virtually) with the principal or observing administrator as needed. Observations done in a virtual environment that have technology issues will not have the teacher’s observation score negatively impacted. Post observations will be conducted to follow-up on the observation and provide any recommendations to the teacher for future improvement.
The Teacher Overall Observation Category Score and Rating from the APPR plan is as follows:
Score Rating Minimum Maximum H 3.5 to 3.75 4.0 E 2.5 to 2.75 3.49 to 3.74 D 1.5 to 1.75 2.49 to 2.74 I 0 1.49 to 1.74
Teachers receiving an overall score of Developing (D) or Ineffective (I) will be given a Teacher Improvement Plan (TIP) to help foster teacher growth (§3012-D).
Observations of Principals will be conducted as agreed upon in the approved APPR plan using the Multi-Dimensional Principal Performance rubric and will be conducted on site at their school. In order to plan effectively for the reopening of our schools and comply with our approved Principal APPR plan, we have devised a strategy to cover the three school reopening possibilities as they relate to observations and evaluations. The three possible re-openings include: In-Person, Hybrid (mix of in-person and remote), and Remote.
- In-Person - If the Agency has an in-person reopening, there will be no change in the APPR process involving observations and evaluations of principals. Observations and evaluations will be carried out in accordance with the approved APPR plan.
- Hybrid - If the Agency reopens in a Hybrid model, principals will be observed while in-person.
- Remote – If the Agency opens remote for an extended time, observing administrators will work with principals on related sections of the rubric. Observing administrators will not negatively impact principals while remotely observing.
Certification, Incidental Teaching & Substitute Mandatory Requirements
The Department of Human Resources will ensure that all teachers, school and district leaders, and pupil personnel service professionals hold a valid and appropriate certificate for their assignment by reviewing the SIRS 329 Staff Certification report in mid-August and again in mid-September. After that, the report will be run periodically to verify certifications. The report will be run by the Supervisor I in charge of hiring certified staff.
- The law prohibits employing a person who does not have a valid state teacher certificate (§§2569,3001). If a staff member is found to be without certification, the Regional Certification Office will aid the employee with the Office of Teaching Initiatives.
The Nassau BOCES will strive to place a teacher certified in the appropriate subject area in all classrooms. In some instances, a department may need to utilize incidental teaching when determining the best way to staff classrooms.
- In response to the COVID-19 crisis, departments/schools may assign teachers to teach a subject not covered by their certificate for a period not to exceed ten classroom hours a week during the 2020-2021 school year (.4 FTE), when no certified or qualified teacher is available after extensive and documented recruitment. When departments/schools schedule a teacher for incidental teaching, the Department of Human Resources will be notified of the incidental teaching and schedules no later than the end of September for the fall or full year term and the end of January for the spring term.
The Nassau BOCES understands that it can also employ substitute teachers to address staffing needs for the allowable amount of days, given their qualifications and teaching assignment, and will make every effort to maintain a database of qualified substitutes in the current environment.
- Substitute teachers with a valid teaching certificate can work in any capacity, for any number of days. If they are employed for more than 40 days the Nassau BOCES in a school year, they must be employed in an area for which they are certified.
- Substitute teachers without a valid certificate, but who are working towards certification (taking college coursework) at a rate of not less than six semester hours per year, can work in any capacity, for any number of days, in any number of school districts. If they are employed for more than 40 days by a school district or BOCES in a school year, they must be employed in the area for which they are seeking certification.
- Substitute teachers who do not hold a valid teaching certificate and are not working towards certification may work for no more than 40 days in the Nassau BOCES (or a school district) in a school year, except as described below.
- During the 2020-2021 school year, due to the COVID-19 crisis, substitute teachers who do not hold a valid teaching certificate and are not working towards certification, but hold a high school diploma or its equivalent, may be employed by the school district or BOCES beyond the 40-day limit, for up to an additional 50 days (90 days total in a school year), if the district superintendent (for BOCES’s and districts that are a component district of a BOCES) or the superintendent (for school districts that are not a component district of a BOCES) certifies that the district or BOCES, as applicable, has conducted a good faith recruitment search for a properly certified candidate and there are no available certified teachers that can perform the duties of such position. In rare circumstances, a district or BOCES may hire a substitute teacher beyond the 90 days, if a district superintendent or superintendent attests that a good faith recruitment search has been conducted and that there are still no available certified teachers who can perform the duties of such position and that a particular substitute teacher is needed to work with a specific class or group of students until the end of the school year.
- The Department of Human Resources will be exploring ways to effectively track substitutes to meet the new guidelines indicated above.
- The Department of Human Resources is reaching out to local universities and colleges to recruit students in educational programs as substitutes and teacher aides. The local colleges and universities include, but are not limited to, Nassau Community College, Hofstra, SUNY Farmingdale, SUNY Old Westbury, St. John’s, Molloy and Adelphi.
The Nassau BOCES will make every effort to work with educator preparation programs to identify appropriate ways in which student teachers can support classroom instruction.
- The Department of Human Resources is reaching out to local universities and colleges to see if we can partner with these organizations in the area of student teachers. The local colleges and universities include, but are not limited to, Hofstra, SUNY Farmingdale, SUNY Old Westbury, St. John’s, Molloy and Adelphi.
- The Commissioner’s Regulations Section 52.21(b)(1) (xvi) defines student teaching as follows:
- Student teaching means a structured, college-supervised learning experience for a student in a teacher education program in which the student teacher practices the skills being learned in the teacher education program and gradually assumes increased responsibility for instruction, classroom management, and other related duties for a class of students in the area of the certificate sought. These skills are practiced under the direct supervision of the certified teacher who has official responsibility for the class.
- The Nassau BOCES will welcome student teachers into its classrooms, whether in person or remote, during the 2020-2021 school year.
- Student teachers can play important roles in terms of bridging gaps related to remote/online instruction, and in supporting the teachers of record and the students, especially during these challenging times.
- The Nassau BOCES will work with cooperating colleges and universities to identify appropriate ways in which student teachers can support classroom instruction while ensuring that the student teacher is given the opportunity to develop critical knowledge and skills.
Building Level Staff Capacity Needs
- Protect and support staff and students who are at higher risk for severe illness by considering remote options for telework and virtual learning, if in-person is not feasible at a given time (e.g. staff member is ill, facility is temporarily closed for cleaning and disinfection following a positive COVID-19 case, student’s parent or guardian requests remote instruction due to COVID-19 susceptibility); provided, however, that students receiving special education services and instruction are entitled to the opportunity to receive in-person instruction.
- Instructional staff will call into the Absence Management System (formerly known as AESOP) when they are absent due to illness. Substitutes will be provided as necessary and as requested.
- The instructional departments will develop a plan to monitor absenteeism of staff, cross-train staff, and create a roster of trained back-up staff.
- The instructional departments will monitor absenteeism of students and staff, cross train staff, and create a roster of trained back-up staff.
Employee Assistance Program (EAP)
- The Human Resources Department will continue to disseminate information to employees about EAP resources. EAP is a voluntary, work-based program that offers free and confidential assessments, short-term counseling, referrals, and follow-up services to employees who have personal and/or work-related problems. EAPs address a broad and complex body of issues affecting mental and emotional well-being, such as alcohol and other substance abuse, stress, grief, family problems, and psychological disorders.
- The Human Resources Department will continue to handle medical and COVID-19 accommodations. Requests for COVID-19 accommodations should be sent to COVID19leave@nasboces.org.