COVID-19 Updates - Team FUSD

COVID-19 Team FUSD Updates

  • The Flagstaff Unified School District believes it is important to keep our team updated regarding events that may impact our services. Our administrative team is closely monitoring information related to Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19) and coordinating with the Coconino County Health Department, the Arizona Department of Health, and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).  

    According to the CDC, "For the general American public, who are unlikely to be exposed to this virus at this time, the immediate health risk from COVID-19 is considered low."  However, FUSD will continue to monitor the situation.  FUSD will update stakeholders regarding changes to practices in the event that the risk assessment changes. In situations like this, we don't want false information to cause undue anxiety or stress, therefore FUSD encourages individuals to visit the CDC website and read more from the CDC

    Additionally, it is currently flu and respiratory disease season in Arizona, and with that in mind, we remind all of our staff to take the following precautions, no matter what time of year it is, to keep our workplace healthy:

    • Get a flu shot if possible
    • Wash your hands frequently with soap and water for a minimum of 20 seconds
    • Cover your cough and sneezes
    • Keep common area surfaces clean with disinfecting wipes
    • Stay home if you are feeling ill

    People who have the following symptoms need to stay home:

    • Frequent/persistent cough
    • Vomiting or diarrhea 
    • Rash and fever or a rash that is contagious 

    If FUSD is alerted that any type of outbreak is occurring in Coconino County, we will immediately follow all protocols set forth by the Coconino County Health and Human Services Department. While there is no cause for alarm, our administrative team is developing contingency plans for students and staff in case we need to disrupt our services in the future. If you have any questions or concerns, as always, please feel free to speak with your supervisor.

Frequently Asked Questions

  • Who is considered essential staff and how will they know?

    Essential staff are those employees who are considered essential for the necessary continuation of critical functions of the District.  They will be notified by their administrator and/or supervisor if they are considered essential. Examples include maintenance staff, payroll, accounts payable, etc. 

    Who monitors the work being performed by essential staff?

    Employees work will be monitored by their normal administrator and/or supervisor per normal guidelines of supervision.  

    What if I am essential staff and I don’t want to work?

    Essential staff that are able to work and choose not to work will be required to use leave and when leave is expired, then pay will be docked.  This is determined on a day-to-day basis. Staff who are concerned about their health and safety during this period should work with their administrator/supervisor.

    What if I am essential staff and I can’t work?

    Essential staff that are unable to work due to illness will be compensated their normal daily rate and will be reassigned to home. 

    If I am essential staff will I be required to work my normal schedule?

    Essential staff may be asked to work a modified schedule; different hours, different location, etc.  Essential staff members should work with their administrator/supervisor for direction.

    If I am essential staff and have day care issues, can I bring my child to the worksite?

    No, only essential personnel are allowed onsite.

    Am I required to use my leave during reassignment?

    No, all staff are being reassigned to home and will not be required to use leave for time away.  During this period staff will be required to report in daily to their administrator (procedures to be provided in the near future). Staff may be requested to work from home on a modified schedule and/or participate in project work. 

    What occurs if I refuse work during my reassignment to home?

    For the day in which you refuse to perform work your administrator/supervisor will notify payroll.  Payroll will use any available leave time unless notified in writing in which the employee is requesting their time to be docked (unpaid) prior to the close of the pay-cycle.  The order in which “leave time” will be used is: comp time, personal leave time, sick time and vacation time.  

    What if I want my personal or sick time to be used first?

    During reassignment to home employees will not have the option to choose in which order they can use time. 

    What if I refuse work because I am ill?

    Staff should communicate to their administrator/supervisor if they are unable to work due to an illness and will receive their normal reassignment to home compensation.

    If I put in for leave for the time and we are closed do I have to go into Absence Management (AESOP) and remove it?

    No, if schools are closed then the District will remove time in the Absence Management system for all staff. 

    What are the requirements for me during reassignment to home?

    All staff will be required to report to their administrator/supervisor on a daily basis.  This process will require staff to access their FUSD email account prior to 9 am daily. For information on how to access your email remotely click this link.  A process for check-in will be provided at future time.   

    Can I go work at my site if I am not designated essential staff?

    Only essential staff designated by Cabinet will be allowed to access their work site during this closure.  The purpose of these temporary policies is to minimize both the number of people gathered in our buildings and the potential spread of the virus and ensure school environments are cleaned as needed. 

    What if I left my laptop/ipad or other personal materials at work?

    Staff who may have left behind their laptop/iPad, other work materials, and/or personal items they may need available during reassignment to home will be able to access their site from Wednesday, March 18 through Monday, March 23rd from 9:00 a.m. until 4:00 pm to gather these items.  Individuals are not allowed to bring non-FUSD employees, including children, during this time. 

    After 4:00 p.m. on Monday, March 23, 2020, team members will need to coordinate with their site administrator/supervisor.  Badge and key-card access to sites will be restricted to essential staff during the school closure. 

    For team members that have animals in the classrooms and have made arrangements for feeding during spring break, they will need to work with site administrators for their care.  Team members will not be able to come onsite to perform these duties.

    What if students have left behind their iPad, other work materials, band instruments, medications, and/or personal items?

    Students who may have left behind their iPad, other work materials, band instruments medications, and/or personal items deemed essential during the school closure must contact the school in advance to schedule retrieval of these items on Monday, March 23, 2020 or as approved by the school administrator.  Safety precautions will be taken and students/families will not be admitted into the school site. 

    I tried to access my worksite and my badge doesn’t work.

    During this pandemic FUSD has restricted all access to sites for only essential staff.

    Does being reassigned to home impact my ASRS?

    No, employees will continue to receive their normal pay and associated deductions.  Employee and employer contributions to the Arizona State Retirement system will continue as normal.  

    Does being reassigned to home impact my benefits?

    No, employees will continue to receive their normal pay and associated deductions.  Employee and employer contributions to our benefit vendors will continue as normal.

    If I am participating in phased retirement, am I considered a permanent employee?

    No, but the District has worked with our phased retirement vendor, ESI (previously Smartschools), to ensure phased retirement staff continue to receive their normal paychecks.  You will be required to follow the same guidelines of reassignment to home criteria.  

    If I am a substitute (teacher/aide) and I had signed up for an assignment will I be compensated for that day?

    No, with the closure of schools substitute staff are not required to report to work and therefore will not be compensated for this time.

    If I am a temporary worker and have sick time to use, will I be allowed to do so?

    Yes, you will be required to enter your request into the Absence Management (AESOP) system.  You will receive an electronic time card from Dawn Gerold, Substitute Coordinator. You will be required to submit this time card within the timeframe provided to you in the email. 

    What if I was scheduled for my principal observation during closure?

    This observation will be rescheduled by your site administrator upon reopening of the schools.

    What happens if schools are closed longer than two weeks?

    FUSD recognizes that this is a rapidly changing situation.  Please be assured we are working diligently to stay in close communication with Coconino County Health and Human Services, the Arizona Department of Education and our other local educational partners to abreast of changes.  We will continue to update our FAQ’s on our website and send out communications on a consistent basis. If you have additional questions please refer them to

Additional Resources

Newly Adopted Federal Leave Legislation

  • Families First Coronavirus Response Act (FFCRA)

  • Emergency Paid Sick Leave Act (EPSLA)


  • Exempt - These are employees that do not qualify for overtime, receive a contract and earn an annual salary.  These are typically referred to as certified, ancillary or administrative employees.

    Non-Exempt (Hourly) - These are employees that are entitled to earn minimum wage for every hour they work and are eligible to receive overtime.  These are typically referred to as classified employees.

    Essential Staff -  These are employees that the attendance on school property is deemed necessary and essential to ensure the critical functions throughout the District are carried out.

    Permanent Staff - These are employees that work for Flagstaff Unified School District (FUSD) and are paid directly by FUSD.  These typically include certified, classified, ancillary and administrative staff.

    Temporary Staff - These are employees that are considered substitutes (teachers/aides), occasional (student workers, sports officials, event workers) or non-budgeted (skills enrichment trainer) and only perform work on an as-needed basis.

    Reassignment to Home - This is where employees are reassigned to home with pay and benefits and will be required to work from home on an as needed basis.

    Leave time - Leave time is generally defined by the District as those alternative pay options employees can access when not working.  These include: Sick time, personal leave time, vacation time and comp time.

    Social Distancing - Social distancing is a public health practice that aims to prevent sick people from coming in close contact with health people in order to reduce opportunities for disease transmission.  For essential staff that are required to report to work on-site FUSD is following CDC recommendations of maintaining a distance of six (6) feet (two meters) whenever possible, limiting gatherings to no more than 10 people, and to practice good handwashing techniques.

    Normal Pay - is defined for exempt (salaried) employees as their normal weekly salary.  For non-exempt (classified/hourly) employees this is calculated as their budgeted hours (hours assigned to work per week) multiplied by the hourly rate.  Example 30 (budgeted hours) x $13.50 per hour = $390