The COVID-19 Conundrum: Parents’ Rights and Obligations When Children ‘Return’ To School

Employment Law Insider & Alert

PUBLISHED ON: September 9, 2020

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On March 11, 2020, COVID-19 was declared a worldwide pandemic by the World Health Organization, shuttering places of employment and schools across the country in favor of virtual learning for the remainder of the school year.

Now, as schools begin to “reopen” for another school year, many school districts across the country are opting to continue virtual learning entirely, or, in some cases, are implementing a hybrid approach, combining virtual learning with in-person learning a few times per week.

Therefore, employers must be cognizant that many working parents otherwise able to return to the workplace are not able to do so, given the need to care for their school-aged children during the work week. As a result, the number of parents seeking leave this Fall to care for their schoolaged children is expected to increase significantly, impacting employers in virtually every sector.

As schools begin to reopen, it is critical for both employers and employees to be aware of their respective rights and obligations under current legislation regarding COVID-19–related parental leave, so that both employers and employees can plan accordingly. . . .