Pittsburg State University is committed to providing a positive, supportive, and harmonious work environment where university support staff employees can perform to their best ability. PSU recognizes also that there are times when disciplinary action is necessary. First, it is important that performance and discipline problems be settled at the earliest stage possible through timely and appropriate verbal/oral reminders and written reminders by the employee's immediate supervisor. If, however, these departmental level actions do not correct the situation, the guidelines in our policy address formal disciplinary measures for employees who violate policies, fail to perform work satisfactorily or behave in a manner detrimental to the University.
Employees appointed to temporary positions may be dismissed at any time.
Employees appointed to benefits-eligible positions who are probationary because of a new appointment may be dismissed at any time prior to the end of the probation period.
Employees appointed to benefits-eligible positions who have permanent status may be disciplined for deficiencies in work performance and/or personal conduct. The disciplinary process may include dismissal, suspension, or demotion.
An employee may generally not be disciplined for deficiencies in work performance until he or she has received two performance evaluations in the 180 calendar days immediately preceding the effective date of the proposed action. The performance evaluations shall be spaced at least 30 calendar days apart. Action may be taken without the performance evaluations if the appropriate Vice President or Department Head (in the President's Division) determines that the good of the service will be best served by immediate action.
Please see the "Performance Review" section when addressing deficiencies in work performance.
1. Personal ConductGrounds for suspension, demotion, or dismissal of a permanent employee for personal conduct detrimental to state service include, but are not limited to, the following:
2. Work PerformanceGrounds for suspension, demotion, or dismissal, of a permanent employee for deficiencies in work performance include, but are not limited to, the following:
Progressive discipline is generally an oral warning, then written warning, then suspension, demotion or termination of employment; however, management has the right to determine the appropriate step(s) based on the severity of the action.
1. Oral Warning (Departmental Level)The immediate supervisor meets with the employee to discuss the problem, identify the changes that are expected, listen to the employee’s point of view, and determine actions that will be taken and a timetable for that action. The supervisor will document the discussion.
2. Written Warning (Departmental Level)If the problem continues, the supervisor notifies the employee that the problem has not been resolved and a second conference is necessary. Following that conference, the supervisor will provide written notification that includes a statement of the problem, an additional opportunity to correct the problem and the time period, as well as disciplinary consequences if the problem is not corrected. The employee’s signature is requested to acknowledge receipt, not necessarily agreement.
3. Suspension, Demotion, or DismissalIf the problem is still not resolved, the next step is suspension, demotion, or dismissal of the employee. Departments request suspension, demotion, or dismissal of an employee to the appropriate Vice President or Department Head (President’s Division) who then reviews the request.
If disciplinary action is proposed by a supervisor but the appropriate Vice President or Department Head (President’s Division) needs time to investigate, the employee may be relieved of his or her duties or the duties may be changed for a limited time. The employee will be in pay status during this time.
If request is approved, the employee will receive written notice either by certified mail or personal delivery of the proposed action. The notice will indicate the effective date for the proposed disciplinary action. The proposed disciplinary action must be effective no sooner than three calendar days or no longer than 14 calendar days from the date of the notice. The employee may be relieved of duties with or without pay during this time.
Prior to the effective date of the proposed disciplinary action, the employee may appear in person or in writing before the appropriate Vice President or Department Head (President’s Division). If the employee appears in person, he or she may be represented by a person of their choice.
Following the employee’s response to the opportunity to reply to the proposed action, or upon expiration of the time for such reply, if no reply is made, the appropriate Vice President or Department Head (President’s Division) shall notify the employee in writing of the final decision on the proposed action. The notice will be personally delivered or sent by certified mail.
If the employee is suspended, demoted, or dismissed, he or she may request a hearing before the Disciplinary Appeals and Grievance Board to determine the reasonableness of such action. To request a hearing, the employee must send a written request to Human Resource Services within 10 work days after the effective date of the action. The Board shall grant a hearing within 20 work days after receipt of such request.
The following is an overview of a Disciplinary Action Appeals Hearing.
At the conclusion of the hearing, the Board will prepare a report to send to the parties within seven work days after the hearing.
If either party is not satisfied with the Disciplinary Appeals or Grievance Board report, he or she may appeal to the University President. The appeal must be made within five work days after receiving the Disciplinary Appeals or Grievance Board report. The President will inform the employee of his or her decision within 10 work days. The President will make the final decision for the University.