Harry Gross: They calculated right on your sick days

Dear Harry: I recently resigned from a private school in Philadelphia. I am unfortunately not a union employee. I had signed a new contract each year of my 11-year employment. In the uniform contract, it says, "Unused personal illness days will be accumulated and carried per year and will be paid at the rate of fifty (50) percent of the contracted salary per diem rate when the employee retires, resigns, or is terminated." My former employer and I disagree about how the per diem rate should be calculated. I was a 10-month employee. My latest contract began on Sept. 1, 2011, and ended on June 30, 2012. The contract also states that employees are to be paid every two weeks over a 12-month period. My position is that the per diem rate should be based on the number of days I worked from Sept. 1, 2011, to June 30, 2012. My employer maintains that the rate should be based on the amount in each two-week period, thus based on 12, not 10 months. The difference is substantial. Any thoughts?

What Harry says: Let's try a different approach. If you went over your allowed sick days, your salary would be docked based on the 12-month pay. Similarly, if you had unused days, the rate should be computed the same way. I'm with the school on this. Sorry.


Email Harry Gross at harrygross@phillynews.com or write to him at Harry Gross c/o the Daily News, Box 8263, Philadelphia, PA 19101.