Department of Defense Education Activity
Leave Options Available for COVID-19 Pandemic Related Absences November 2021

Emergency Leave Options

This document provides potential situations that may occur during the COVID‐19 Pandemic and leave options supervisors are authorized to approve when employees are in a duty status. It has been updated now that the authority for GS and WG employees to use Emergency Paid Leave (EPL) under the American Rescue Plan Act has expired. It has also been updated to clarify that all DoDEA employees will be in a regular/official duty status when getting mandatory COVID‐19 vaccinations. Employees will receive up to four (4) hours of administrative leave to receive the COVID booster or additional doses, and to take family members to get vaccinated. Employees who experience an adverse reaction to a COVID‐19 vaccination shall be granted no more than two (2) workdays of administrative leave for recovery, per vaccination dose.

This guide does not include all possible scenarios that may require an employee’s need to request leave from duty. The guide also does not address all employee or family member illness or emergencies. Nothing in this document changes the requirement that employees must still request leave and follow all leave requesting procedures. The following situations do not alter management’s discretion related to the approval or denial of Annual, Personal, Any Purpose Leave (APL), or Leave Without Pay (LWOP) based on the mission of the Agency. Labor Management and Employee Relations (LMER) staff are available to address any questions supervisors may have regarding this guidance.

As a reminder, school‐level employees assigned to a brick and mortar school are generally not eligible to work from home or other Alternate Work Location unless: 1) the school is operating in a remote learning environment; 2) the school has been closed because someone in the school tested positive for COVID‐19, or 3) through contact tracing, DoDEA identifies an employee who has been exposed to COVID‐19 at the workplace and sends the employee home to quarantine, as directed by public health. If an employee cannot report due to COVID‐19 exposure at the workplace, they may be directed to work from home on an ad hoc basis and placed in a duty status for that time. Administrators should contact their local LMER office for further guidance.

Additionally, per the Home‐Based Screening Acknowledgment, employees who believe they may have been exposed to COVID‐19 are required to consult with local public health officials for potential testing and evaluation as a possible close contact and follow applicable public health or local installation quarantine, isolation, and Restriction of Movement (ROM) requirements.

Finally, this document does not provide guidance on entitlements under the Federal Employees’ Compensation Act (FECA). Federal employees who develop COVID‐19 while in the performance of their federal duties may be entitled to workers' compensation coverage pursuant to the Federal Employees' Compensation Act (FECA). Managers and employees can learn about filing COVID‐19 claims under FECA by visiting  visiting this page.