Parental leave

Parental leave

30. PARENTAL LEAVE

Purpose

30.1 In order to assist Staff Members to balance work and family responsibilities, the University provides parental leave to eligible Staff in respect of the birth of a child to them, their partner or through a surrogacy arrangement; or the placement of a child with a view to adoption; or foster parenting arrangements.

Entitlement to Paid Leave

30.2 All paid parental leave referred to in the table below is to be calculated in accordance with subclause 30.9.

(a) Paid Parental Leave - Primary carer of newborn child

Upon commencement of employment, a Staff Member who is the primary carer of a child born to them, their partner or via surrogacy will be entitled to 14 weeks paid leave.

A Staff Member with more than 1 year Continuous Service at the time of the birth of the child will be entitled to an additional 12 weeks paid leave.

(b) Paid Parental Leave -

Surrogate

A Staff Member who is a surrogate will be entitled to 6 weeks paid leave for the purpose of childbirth and recovery from childbirth.

(c) Paid Parental Leave -

Primary carer of adopted child

A Staff Member who is the primary carer of their adopted child will be entitled to 14 weeks paid leave from commencement of employment.

A Staff Member with more than 1 year Continuous Service at the time of the placement of the child will be entitled to an additional 12 weeks paid leave.

Eligibility for parental leave will be on that basis that the adopted child:

(i) is under 18 years of age;

(ii) is not a natural child or stepchild of the Staff Member or the Staff Member's partner;

(iii) has not, at the proposed date of placement, previously lived with the Staff Member for a continuous period of more than six months.

Parental leave will commence from the date on which the Staff Member takes custody of the child, irrespective of whether that date is before or after the date on which the court makes an order for the adoption of the child by the Staff Member.

(d) Paid Parental Leave –

Primary carer of foster child

A Staff Member who is the primary carer of a foster child will be entitled to six weeks paid parental leave at half pay.

Eligibility for paid parental leave will be on the basis that:

(i) the foster child is under 18 years of age;

(ii) the foster parenting arrangement is for a long-term placement.

Parental leave will commence from the date on which the Staff Member takes custody of the child.

(e) Paid Partner’s Leave

Up to 4 weeks paid leave at the birth or adoption of the child for full time staff (or the pro rata equivalent for part-time staff).

Entitlement to parental leave will be reduced by any partner's leave taken at the time of the birth or adoption of the child.

Entitlement to Unpaid Leave

30.3 All Staff will be entitled to unpaid leave in accordance with the table below:

(a) Unpaid parental leave - primary carer of new born child or adopted child  

A Staff Member will be entitled to unpaid parental leave up to the child’s second birthday. Unpaid parental leave may begin at any time up to two years from the date of birth of the child.

(b) Unpaid Partner’s Leave

Up to 4 weeks unpaid leave (meaning a maximum of 8 weeks partners leave can be taken concurrently with the primary carer)

Eligibility

30.4 If a Staff Member's partner is employed by the University, paid leave may be shared up to the total eligible entitlement.

30.5 Fixed term and long-term casual Staff Members, who satisfy eligibility requirements, will be entitled to payment for the full period of parental leave.

30.6 Fixed term or long-term casual Staff Members who commence a period of paid parental leave prior to the expiration of their contract, will be entitled to payment for the full period of paid parental leave to which they have an entitlement. Payment of parental leave taken in service will be paid at the Staff Member’s ordinary rate. Any remaining payment made on the expiration of their contract will be paid at the Staff Member’s Base Salary.

Other Paid Leave Before Parental Leave

30.7 A Staff Member may take up to 2 days paid leave to attend compulsory interviews as part of an adoption, surrogacy or foster care arrangement.

30.8 If a Staff Member or a Staff Member’s partner is pregnant, they may take personal leave for routine medical appointments and for prenatal classes held in working hours.

Calculation of paid leave

30.9 Paid parental leave will be calculated on the Staff Member's Base Salary immediately prior to commencing parental leave based on the table below, except in circumstances referred to in subclause 30.17 regarding Transfer to Safe Work, subclause 30.32 regarding Further Pregnancy and in relation to new Staff in the first year of their employment.

For full-time Staff Members

Where a Staff Member has worked full-time for the six months prior to commencing parental leave, paid leave will be at full-time rates.

For part-time and Long-Term Casual Staff Members

Where a Staff Member is part-time or casual (or has worked part-time or casually in the six months prior to commencing parental leave), paid leave will be calculated on a pro-rata basis using the average service fraction of the Staff Member for the six months immediately prior to commencing parental leave.

Where a Staff Member has not been at work for the full six months prior to commencing parental leave, the averaging period may be reduced from six months to a minimum of three months or the actual period worked (whichever is the greater).

Taking Parental Leave

30.10 A Staff Member may take parental leave as full-time or with the approval of the Executive Dean as:

(a) part-time; or

(b) partly full-time and partly part-time.

30.11 A Staff Member should not take parental leave at the same time as the Staff Member's partner but this does not apply to:

(a) four weeks partner's leave taken at the time of the birth of the child; or

(b) paid parental leave shared by the Staff Member and the Staff Member's partner at the time the child has been placed with them with a view to the adoption of the child.

30.12 A Staff Member may elect to take a period of annual leave or long service leave to which there is an entitlement, instead of unpaid parental leave. The period of annual leave or long service leave will be treated as part of parental leave.

30.13 A Staff Member granted part-time parental leave may resume full-time work on giving the Executive Dean four weeks notice. A Staff Member may not be able to return to the former position in a full-time capacity until the leave would have expired but must be placed on duties at the same classification and level as the former position.

30.14 A Staff Member who returns to work within their period of paid leave may bank the difference to use for discretionary purposes. This retained entitlement may be taken at any time, in agreement with the Executive Dean, up to the child's second birthday and is available to use for:

(a) a subsidised part-time return to work to assist in a phased return to the workplace; or

(b) a further period of paid parental leave with notice requirement of four weeks written notice; or

(c) professional development purposes and/or a research grant.

Transfer to Safe Work

30.15 Where illness or risks arising out of pregnancy or hazards connected with normal duties make it inadvisable for a pregnant Staff Member to continue in her substantive role, the duties will be modified or the Staff Member transferred to a safe position at the same classification level until the commencement of parental leave. Alternatively, if the Staff Member agrees and it is both possible and appropriate, a working at home agreement may be negotiated for an appropriate and specified period.

30.16 If adjustments cannot reasonably be made, the Executive Dean will consult with the Staff Member and grant any accrued entitlements to paid leave including personal leave, annual leave, long service leave or leave without pay until the child is born or for as long as it is necessary to avoid exposure to that risk, as certified by a medical practitioner. If the Staff Member wishes to commence parental leave, any paid or unpaid parental leave will be deducted from the maximum entitlement offered by the University.

30.17 Parental leave will be paid at the rate of the Staff Member's substantive salary. If the Staff Member changed temporarily to a reduced hours position because of the pregnancy, the relevant salary when taking parental leave will be the substantive salary paid immediately before the hours of work were reduced.

Premature Birth, Still Birth, Miscarriage or Death of Child

30.18 If a Staff Member gives birth prematurely they will be treated as being on paid parental leave from the date they commence leave to give birth to the child and any previous leave arrangements may need to be varied.

30.19 A Staff Member whose child is stillborn or dies within four weeks of birth will be entitled to 14 weeks paid parental leave. A Staff Member may also access available Personal Leave or unpaid Special Maternity Leave.

30.20 Where a Staff Member's pregnancy terminates prior to 20 weeks gestation, any absence from work will be on Personal Leave. Long-term casuals will be considered as being on unpaid authorised absence.

Parental leave funding

30.21 The salary costs of Staff Members on paid parental leave are met from a central account. This will allow the provision of essential replacement for absent Staff.

Effect on other entitlements

30.22 Paid parental leave or partner's leave on full pay will count in full and parental leave paid at half pay will count to the extent of one half thereof for the accrual of annual leave.

30.23 Parental leave without pay counts as service for incremental purposes.

Return to Work and Right of Return to Former Position after Parental Leave

30.24 A Staff Member will confirm their intention to return to work by giving notice in writing not less than six weeks prior to the expiration of parental leave.

30.25 On return from parental leave the Staff Member is entitled to return to the pre-parental leave position or, if that position no longer exists, an available position for which the Staff Member is qualified and suited nearest in status and pay to the pre-parental leave position.

30.26 A Staff Member returning from parental leave in accordance with subclause 30.25 is entitled to return on a part-time basis provided that:

(a) the part-time fraction is no less than 0.4 FTE; and

(b) the part-time period is no more than 2 years and taken in whole teaching periods.

30.27 For any other flexible work arrangements, a Staff Member returning from parental leave, may make a request for flexible work arrangements in accordance with subclauses 19.1 - 19.4 of this Agreement. The University, where it is reasonable and practicable, will attempt to accommodate the Staff Member's request subject to operational requirements.

30.28 Staff returning from parental leave will receive a local briefing on the latest changes and developments in their working environment, including any necessary training.

Breastfeeding Support

30.29 Support will be provided to women returning to work after parental leave to continue with breastfeeding, if that is their choice. Breaks for expressing and storing breast milk and to breastfeed if the child is in nearby care will be paid.

Former Position Redundant

30.30 Where the University has commenced a managing change process in accordance with this Agreement, which is likely to have significant effect on the Staff Member's position, the University will notify the Staff Member and allow them reasonable opportunity to participate in the process. If the position the Staff Member occupied prior to the commencement of parental leave is identified as a redundant position, the University will provide reasonable opportunity for redeployment in accordance with clause 45, Redundancy, Redeployment and Retrenchment.

Further Pregnancy

30.31 A Staff Member who becomes pregnant while on parental leave is entitled to a further period of parental leave. However, remaining parental leave from the former pregnancy lapses as soon as the new period of parental leave begins.

30.32 Where a Staff Member commences parental leave without returning to work from a previous period of parental leave, the following scale will apply for calculating any paid leave benefit under subclause 30.2:

Second consecutive period of parental leave without returning to work

0.4 FTE

Third consecutive period of parental leave without returning to work

0.2 FTE

Fourth or subsequent consecutive periods of parental leave without returning to work

0.0 FTE

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