It is the policy of Kansas Athletics to handle the termination of any employee in a fair and consistent manner. “Termination” refers to an employee’s discontinuance of service by either resignation or retirement, as well as the release of an employee by Kansas Athletics.
A two (2)-week written notice is ordinarily expected from all employees who voluntarily terminate employment. At the option of Kansas Athletics, an employee may be placed upon administrative leave with pay, or the effective date of the resignation letter may be moved to an earlier date. The employee in either situation shall be paid to the resignation effective date.
Kansas Athletics and KU recognize the high value of long-time employees and theimportance of celebrating their contributions. The University annually hosts a retirementdinner to which the retiree and a guest will be invited to attend. In addition to the officialcampus recognition ceremony, departments at Kansas Athletics may choose to honor retireeswith a department gathering and a “going away” gift. The retirement ceremony should bean opportunity for the retiring employee’s work colleagues to convey appreciation and goodwishes. The gift should be a keepsake and may be personalized to the individual. The giftand its value should be appropriate for the retiring employee and his/her length of servicewith Kansas Athletics. Supervisors should not solicit their subordinates for a contributionfor a retirement gift for another and may never solicit a retirement gift for themselves.Supervisors will coordinate with the Director of Human Resources for the ordering of theretirement gift.
Non-Reappointments and Terminations
1. Employees With Employment Agreements
For some employees, generally coaches, an employment agreement may be entered.Employment agreements will govern the term of employment, including termination.
2. Non-Reappointment/Termination Without Cause
Generally Kansas Athletics employees’ terms of employment are renewed annually andtheir employment shall run on a fiscal year basis (July 1 through June 30). Upon therecommendation of the supervisor and with the approval of the Athletics Director, benefitseligible individuals with at least twelve (12) continuous full-time months of employmentwill be automatically renewed for the period July 1 through June 30 unless a written noticeof non-reappointment (termination without cause) has been delivered to the employee on orbefore March 31. For benefits eligible employees who begin employment after July 1, theirautomatic renewal appointment period will not begin until they have been employed for a full12 month period; thus, their appointment period will not begin until the July 1st after theyhave been employed for a full 12 months.
A notice of non-reappointment should be given to the employee as early as possible butmust be given at least three months in advance (by March 31) of the expiration date of theannual appointment (June 30). Non-reappointment letters should be in the best interests ofKansas Athletics and must be recommended by the supervisor and approved by the AthleticsDirector. The Director of Human Resources must be consulted prior to the decision and shalldraft the letter of non-reappointment.
Individuals who have received letters of non-reappointment may be placed on paidadministrative leave or may be reassigned to other duties and/or an alternate supervisor untilthe effective date of the non-reappointment. Such reassignments may lead to a change inFair Labor Standard Act designation (i.e. exempt vs. non-exempt), a different title, and/oradditional employment conditions but shall not result in any change of salary during theperiod.
Kansas Athletics reserves the right to adjust the time period of notice of non-reappointmentduring times of budgetary constraints, as defined by the Board of Directors or the Chancellorof the University, discontinuance of a program or department, elimination of a job, or areduction in the workforce. In the event of one of these reasons for termination, the specificnotice of non-reappointment time periods do not apply. It is expected, however, thatwhenever possible, individuals whose appointments are being terminated for these reasonswill be provided reasonable notice (a minimum of no fewer than 2 weeks notice) regardingthe termination of their appointment.
Exceptions to notice requirement:
Some employees have special employment conditions and thus this section will not apply tothem.
- Employees with employment agreements will be governed by the terms of theircontracts.
- Employees who are hired for a limited term of employment (typically internshippositions), non-benefits eligible employees, or temporary positions also are notsubject to this policy.
- Assistant coaches (does not include Olympic Sports strength and conditioningcoaches) are not covered by this section. Due to the seasonal requirements ofdifferent sports, assistant coaches are employed at will (employment can be endedat any time without cause) and may be given notice of termination at any time Anyassistant coach who is terminated without cause will be given three months notice.
3. Termination With Cause
An employee may be immediately terminated for inadequate performance (i.e. unsatisfactoryperformance, habitual failure to report to work, significant or repetitive violation of NCAA,Big Twelve Conference, local/state/federal laws, or Kansas Athletics/University laws andpolicies), or misconduct or other appropriate cause.
Discharge of an employee for cause may result from an employee’s misconduct, documentedincompetence, or failure to fulfill employment responsibilities and commitments.
Misconduct, the first incident of which may result in immediate dismissal, includes, but isnot necessarily limited to the following:
- Violation of NCAA, Kansas Athletics, Big Twelve Conference, or Universityguidelines.
Drunkenness, including drinking during working hours, or being under the influence ofliquor or drugs during working hours, or bringing intoxicants or drugs to work.Theft or dishonesty.Insubordination.Falsification of records, including time cards.Use of obscene, foul or abusive language toward another person, including the failureto treat fellow employees with courtesy and respect.Giving or taking a bribe of any nature as an inducement to obtaining work or retaininga position.Threats of physical harm through violence to another person or threats to cause seriousdamage to public or private property.Failure to cooperate in any NCAA, Kansas Athletics, Big Twelve Conference orUniversity investigation.Misuse of Kansas Athletics property, including but not limited to use of computers and/or cell phonesOther serious misconduct as may be determined by the supervisor or the AthleticsDirector
Employees terminated for cause are not eligible for rehire.
4. Termination Due To Harassment, Discrimination, or Retaliation
Discrimination on the basis of sex, race, color, religion, national origin, age, disability, sexualorientation, status as a veteran, ancestry, marital status, parental status, gender identity,gender expression, genetic information, harassment, or retaliation because an individual hasengaged in a protected activity is considered serious misconduct and subjects an employee totermination for cause.
Any employee has the right to grieve what the employee perceives to be an unfair practicewithout fear of reprisal, abuse or other form of discouragement by management. Such unfairpractice may be registered by the employee informally as an oral complaint, or officiallyfiled in writing as a grievance. The grievance should be as specific as possible and includethe date(s) of the occurrence; a brief description of the unfair practice(s); individualsinvolved; a recommended resolution of the unfair practice; and employee’s signature. Allgrievances should be presented to the immediate supervisor within three (3) workdays oftheir occurrence. If the grievance is against the immediate supervisor, the employee maybypass the supervisor and present the grievance to the next higher level of supervision. Inall cases a copy of a written grievance should be sent immediately to the Kansas AthleticsDirector of Human Resources.
The supervisor who receives the grievance should respond with a recommendation forresolution of the grievance within a reasonable period of time after receipt of the grievance.The employee may accept the supervisor’s proposed solution. The employee’s writtenacceptance of the supervisor’s solution should be sent to the Director of Human Resources.Should the employee not accept the supervisor’s proposed solution, he/she may appeal to theDirector of Human Resources. The Director of Human Resources will conduct a thoroughinvestigation of the grievance and make recommendations for resolution to the AthleticsDirector or his/her designee. The decision of the Athletics Director or his/her designee willbe final and binding on all parties.
The following issues will not be covered or processed under the grievance procedure:
- The selection and hiring of the workforce.
Dismissal, including the receipt of a letter of non-reappointment, suspensionor demotion of an employee.Layoffs, including releases due to a reduction in the work force or eliminationof the job.Management’s authority to assign work to employees in accordance with theirposition description.
Kansas Athletics is committed to working with an employee to achieve an early andamicable resolution to perceived inequities. If an employee has questions about the grievanceprocedure, he/she should contact the Director of Human Resources.
Although Kansas Athletics strives to maintain a satisfactory relationship with all employees,both the employer and employee must honor that relationship. When a personal conduct orperformance problem cannot be appropriately resolved, disciplinary action may be initiated.Depending on the severity of the conduct of the employee and the advice of the employee’ssupervisor, Kansas Athletics reserves the right to terminate an employee for cause or mayopt to implement remedial measures for the employee to correct the problems before theyadversely affect Kansas Athletics’ operations or other employees, students or members of thepublic. Certain infractions or misconduct may justify omitting one or more steps, includingmoving to immediate termination. This policy explicitly recognizes, however, that someinstances of misconduct or poor performance may properly result in a termination for causewithout prior remedial measures.
1. The first step in the disciplinary process is counseling by the supervisor in order tocorrect the problem without resorting to more serious formal action. The counselingsession should be reduced to writing and include:
- A review of the duties the employee is expected to perform and/or his/herpersonal conduct on the job (attendance, cooperation, etc.).
An explanation of why the employee’s personal conduct or job performance isnot acceptable.An opportunity for the employee to explain or justify personal conduct or jobperformance.A discussion of ways to correct personal conduct or job performance.Development of a plan for improvement with a time frame (ordinarily thirtydays) for further follow-up and review.
At the conclusion of the counseling session, or as soon as possible thereafter, thesupervisor shall present a summary of the meeting to the employee for his/hersignature. Signing the statement is an acknowledgement that the employeeunderstands the areas for improvement and realizes that consequences may bewarranted should improvement not be forthcoming. The employee may fileresponses for inclusion in his/her file. This written record shall be kept in theemployee’s personnel file in the Human Resources office.
2. If counseling and a plan for improvement does not correct the problem within thetime frame outlined in the counseling session, formal disciplinary action may beinitiated by the supervisor in the form of a written reprimand, suspension (with orwithout pay), or dismissal. A supervisor has the authority to present a writtenreprimand to an employee at any time for cause. The written reprimand is presentedto the employee and the employee is asked to sign and date it. The employee’ssignature does not indicate agreement with the reprimand, only that he/she received acopy. A copy of the signed reprimand is sent to Human Resources for inclusion in theemployee’s personnel file. The employee may file responses to the reprimand forinclusion in his/her file.
The supervisor must make a recommendation through supervisory levels to the AthleticsDirector to suspend or dismiss an employee. The justification and reasons for such actionwill be thoroughly reviewed in accordance with applicable policy, procedure and law beforeproceeding with more severe disciplinary actions.
No person will be discriminated against in employment because of race, religion, color,sex, age, national origin, disability, status as a military veteran, sexual orientation, ancestry,marital status, parental status, gender identity, gender expression, genetic information,or other unlawful reason. This policy applies to all terms, conditions, and privileges ofemployment and all policies of Kansas Athletics, including hiring, training, orientation,placement, employee development, promotion, transfer, compensation, benefits, educationalassistance, layoff and recall, social and recreational programs, employee facilities, andtermination.
It is the policy of Kansas Athletics to promote a productive work environment and to nottolerate verbal or physical conduct by any employee that harasses, disrupts, or interferes withanother’s work performance or that creates an intimidating, offensive, or hostile environment.
Employees are required to meet with the Director of Human Resources to ensure that alladministrative details concerning termination, resignations, retirements, or releases arecompleted. The Director of Human Resources takes the following actions:
- Arranges for final payment of the employee;
Explains any conversion benefits under the group insurance plans;Recovers or makes arrangements for repayment of any debts or obligations due theUniversity or Kansas Athletics;Obtains a correct forwarding address.
The employee will return on or before his/her final day of employment all Kansas Athleticsand University property which could include keys, cell phone, telephone calling card,parking pass, car rental cards, credit cards, calling cards and/or Wheel Club automobile.
The employee will be responsible for the replacement of property not returned and will bebilled for charges that occur on and after the last day of employment. All expense and relatedreports must be completed and submitted prior to the employee’s departure.
The employee’s final paycheck shall include all wages earned though the last day ofemployment, and accrued, unused leave in accordance to the vacation policy as stated inPolicy 601 F: Leave.