OKLAHOMA CITY – Another major education reform received approval in the Senate Wednesday. Sen. Adam Pugh’s Senate Bill 364 would provide teachers and school employees up to eight weeks of maternity leave following the birth of a child.
“Having paid maternity leave is a major workforce development need throughout all industries, but it’s especially important in education as this career field is made up of 76% women, and most of those are young women wanting to start or grow their family,” said Pugh, R-Edmond. “As we continue working to attract more teachers to the classroom and keep the outstanding professionals we already have, we must stop making mothers choose between their children and their careers. This will give them eight weeks to heal, take care of their newborn and adjust to their new family life.”
Under SB 364, full-time public school district employees who have been employed for at least one year would be entitled to eight weeks of paid maternity leave, immediately following the birth of their child. This would be in addition, not in place of, any sick leave of the employee. They would be allowed to use their annual or sick leave, shared leave, or unpaid leave if they wished to take off the full 12 weeks as is legally required under the Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA).
Rep. Rhonda Baker, R-Yukon, is the principal House author of the bill that is now eligible to be considered in that chamber.
For more information, contact: Sen. Pugh: (405) 521-5622 or Adam.Pugh@oksenate.gov