Conducting Effective Layoffs

With funding cuts inevitable for the 2020-21 fiscal year, it may be necessary for schools to eliminate or combine positions and lay off staff members. The legal and contractual requirements for layoffs vary greatly between employee groups and are dependent on statutory provisions, collective bargaining agreements, individual contracts, and board policy. Failure to adhere to legal and contractual requirements could negate the layoff and lead to potential liability.

The layoff process generally requires sending an employee notice that the board will consider the layoff, an opportunity for the employee to respond at a board meeting, a board resolution approving the layoff (and the economic reasons for the layoff), and providing the employee notice of the layoff. The process is not as simple as sending an employee a letter.

For teachers and some other professionals, layoff decisions must take into account the requirements of Revised School Code Section 1248 along with board policy. These requirements include having the appro­priate teacher evaluations completed before a layoff decision is made.

To assist with the layoff process, we have developed documents that, after consultation with your Thrun labor attorney, can be quickly tailored to a school’s specific needs based on applicable contract language and board policy. Using these documents and consulting with your Thrun labor attorney will help ensure that the process is done correctly.