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Leaves of Absence

This FAQ is an attempt by BFT to answer some of the most frequently asked questions about unpaid leaves of absence under the BFT/BUSD Collective Bargaining Agreement. For more information please feel free to consult with your Site Rep, email BFT at and/or consult Article 12 of the Collective Bargaining Agreement.

1. Who can apply for unpaid leaves of absence?

Anyone can apply for a leave of absence. Employees who have achieved permanent status and who have served three years in the district are automatically guaranteed a full-time leave. For other employees the decision is at the District's discretion.

2. Is the leave request automatically granted?

Requests for full-time unpaid leave of absence in the subsequent year that are received BY MARCH 1st are automatically granted for a maximum of one year for employees who have achieved permanent status and who have served three years in the district. After March 1st such requests MAY be granted at the District’s discretion. IT IS IMPORTANT TO GET YOUR REQUEST SUBMITTED BY MARCH 1st.

3. How do I apply for an unpaid leave of absence?

OPTION 1 - If you will be returning from your leave next school year (2024-25) full time, please check you email for message titled: Sign or Review: Form for [your name] titled Certificaed Intent to Retrun from Leave.

OPTION 2 - If you will not be returning next school year, and would like to retire or resign, please fill out this Separation form. Must submit as soon as possible - last day of work should be 6/5/2024

Option 3 - If you will be extending your Current Leave, Requesting a New or Partial Leave, please fill out a new Leave application for the 2024-2025 school year. Must submit by March 1st.

Contract Lona Kelly, BUSD Senior Human Resources Technician at for questions.

4. When am I officially notified that my leave has been approved?

The District is obligated to let you know by April 15th.

5. Can I go work in another school district while on leave from BUSD?

No, this is expressly prohibited in Article 12, Section 1.7.

6. What happens to my benefits while I’m on unpaid leave?

While on unpaid leave of absence you are permitted to remain on BUSD group coverage but you must pay the full cost of the coverage. To find the full cost of your medical and dental benefits plans you can go to the “Benefits” section of the BFT website and look under the row labeled “rates”.

7. What about part-time unpaid leaves of absence?

The contract states that the District will “endeavor to make available part-time and part-year leaves of absence….” If you are interested in a partial leave for next year it is best to submit your request by the March 1st deadline.

8. Can I change my mind after I request a leave?

No, you cannot unilaterally change your mind.  You can request to have your leave request rescinded, but BUSD must agree.  If BUSD has already hired someone to fill the full or part-time position they will not allow you to rescind your request, so if you change your mind you want to request to rescind your leave request ASAP.

Updated 9/1/23