A California state lawmaker is moving to repeal a 40-year-old law requiring public school teachers on extended sick leave to pay for their own substitute teachers. The Bay Area’s public media giant KQED first reported on the state law last spring, after a San Francisco Unified school community created a GoFundMe account to help one of their teachers who was battling cancer. That teacher had to pay the cost of her own substitute — amounting to nearly half of her paycheck — while she underwent extended treatment. After the story published, more California public school teachers came forward to describe similar hardships.
Democratic State Sen. Connie Leyva of Chino, chair of the education committee, then took up the issue, but said action would need to wait until this session. Now she’s introduced Senate Bill 796, which would entitle school employees to continue to receive full pay while on extended sick leave.