Rules of the School Board of Palm Beach County, Florida
Title 6Gx50
Chapter 3. Personnel

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Policy 3.27Suspension and Dismissal of Employees

  1. The purpose of this section is to promulgate rules regarding the suspension and dismissal of employees. These rules shall be read in conjunction with the procedures established for administrative hearings as set forth in Chapter 4, except, however, in the event it is determined that a conflict exists between these rules and those of Chapter 4, these rules will be controlling.

  2. Upon a finding of probable cause by the Superintendent sufficient to warrant a recommendation to the School Board for suspension without pay and dismissal, the Superintendent shall communicate in writing to the employee:

    1. A concise statement of the Superintendent's recommendation(s) to the School Board affecting the employee's employment status.

    2. A statement of the date, time, and place where the School Board shall meet to consider the Superintendent's actions and recommendation(s).

    3. A statement of the legal authority for the Superintendent's actions and recommendation(s).

    4. A short and plain statement of the charges made by the Superintendent against the employee.

    5. A statement of the time limit for requesting a hearing before the School Board.

  3. All employees recommended for suspension without pay and dismissal shall have the right to request a hearing provided such a request is made in writing to the School Board within 15 days of the receipt of the Superintendent's written notice.

  4. Any person who receives written notice from the Superintendent of a recommendation(s) for suspension without pay and dismissal and who fails to request a hearing within 15 days, shall have waived the right to request a hearing on such matters, and the allegations and charges as contained in the notice shall be deemed by the School Board to be true for the purpose of entering a final order on the Superintendent's recommendation(s).

  5. In the event a request for a hearing is timely made and received by the Office of General Counsel, by either an instructional employee with a continuing contract or by a noninstructional employee during the term of an annual contract, the procedure for conducting a hearing, unless otherwise determined by the School Board, is as follows:

    1. The Superintendent will file a petition for dismissal with the Division of Administrative Hearings (DOAH). This petition shall contain:

      1. The name and address of the School Board and the file or identification number, if known;

      2. The name and address of the employee, and an explanation of how the employee's substantial interest will be affected by the agency determination;

      3. A statement of when and how the employee received notice of agency decision or intent to render a decision;

      4. A statement of all disputed issues of material fact. If there are none, the petition must so indicate;

      5. A concise statement of the ultimate facts alleged, as well as the rules and statutes which entitle the Superintendent to relief;

      6. A demand for relief to which the Superintendent deems himself entitled; and

      7. Other information which the Superintendent contends is material.

    2. The DOAH will assign a Hearing Officer to conduct the hearing. The employee and the employee's representative will be informed of the time and place for the hearing by the DOAH. Whenever possible, the hearing shall be held in the place most convenient to all parties as determined by the Hearing Officer.

    3. The hearing shall be conducted in accordance with Chapter 120, Florida Statutes.

    4. Within thirty (30) days after the hearing or receipt of the hearing transcript, whichever is later, the Hearing Officer shall file a recommended order to the School Board including a caption, time and place of hearing, statement of the issues, findings of fact and conclusions of law, and recommendations for final agency action.

    5. The School Board, within ninety (90) days of receipt of the Hearing Officer's recommended order, shall issue the final order. This shall be considered at a regularly scheduled School Board meeting. The School Board may adopt the Hearing Officer's recommended order as its Final Order. The School Board in its final order may reject or modify the conclusions of law in the recommended order but may not reject or modify the findings of fact unless the School Board first determines from a review of the complete record that the findings of fact were not based upon competent substantial evidence or that the proceedings on which the findings were based did not comply with essential requirements of law. The School Board may reduce or increase the recommended penalty in a recommended order, but may do so only with a review of the complete record.

  6. If a request for a hearing is timely made and received by the Office of General Counsel by an instructional employee during the term of an annual contract or by an instructional employee with a professional service contract, either employee may elect to have a hearing before the DOAH or request that a hearing be held before the School Board. If the employee elects a hearing before the School Board, the following procedures shall apply:

    1. The hearing must be conducted by the School Board within forty-five (45) days of the request for hearing.

    2. The hearing shall be conducted in accordance with Section 120.57, Florida Statutes.

    3. Following the close of a hearing before the School Board, the parties may submit proposed findings of fact, conclusions of law and recommended order, or legal briefs on the issues within a time designated by the School Board.

    4. If an employee does not specifically designate a hearing preference, the School Board shall follow procedures as listed in Section (5).

  7. A majority vote of the membership of the School Board shall be required to sustain the Superintendent's recommendation. A final order shall be entered within ninety (90) days after the last date of the hearing or receipt of the hearing transcript, whichever is later.

  8. The determination of the School Board shall be final as to the sufficiency or insufficiency of the grounds for termination of employment.

Authority:

120.53, 230.22, 231.001, FS

Implemented:

120.57, 120.59, 230.22(3), 230.33(7), 231.36, 230.32, FS

History:

New: 6/16/82; Amended: 3/21/84; Revised: 12/11/85