DQA. Employee Handbook General


This manual is designed to acquaint you with South Plains College and to provide you with information about working conditions, employee compensation and benefits, and some of the policies affecting your employment. You should read, understand and comply with all provisions of this manual. No employee manual can anticipate every circumstance or question that may arise, and as the College grows, the policies may need to be changed. As a result, South Plains College reserves the right to revise, supplement or rescind any policy or portion of this manual as it deems appropriate. These changes will be communicated to you verbally or in writing and via future revisions to the manual.

This handbook is not intended to create any contractual obligation or legal right. All South Plains College employees are employed "at will," which means that either the employee or South Plains College may end the relationship at any time, with or without notice, and with or without articulating a reason. Only the President of South Plains College has the authority to modify the "at will" employment arrangement or make changes to the policies and procedures explained in this manual.


Equal Employment Opportunity. South Plains College is committed to a policy of equal employment opportunity. This means that employment decisions affecting applicants and employees will not be based upon an individual's race, color, religion, gender, national origin, age, disability or any other unlawful basis. Employees who engage in such unlawful discrimination will be subject to disciplinary action up to and including discharge. If you feel you have been unlawfully discriminated against, you should notify your supervisor, Human Resources or any other person in administration whom you are comfortable in approaching.

General Hiring Policy. When a position vacancy occurs, opportunities to promote from within may be explored, consistent with the goal of filling positions with the most capable individual available. Job postings and employee performance appraisals will provide the primary input to the internal selection process. External recruiting sources may be used simultaneously with the internal search.

Transfers. Any full-time employee transferring from one department within the College to another department within the College will retain all their benefits. An employee is eligible to apply for open positions after they have completed six months in their current position, unless the move is initiated by the college. All internal transfers must have the approval of the appropriate Vice President prior to the offer being made. Employees whose current position is institutionally funded will not be eligible to transfer to grant funded positions unless prior approval is granted from the appropriate Vice President.

Job Posting. When a vacancy occurs, the appropriate supervisor will submit an approved personnel requisition form and job description to the Human Resource Department. The human Resource Department will post information on the South Plains College website and advertise in selected publications. When an employee is selected to fill a posted vacancy, the two departments involved will confer and agree on a suitable transfer date preferably no longer than two weeks from selection date.


Personnel Records. A personnel record will be maintained on each employee of South Plains College. This file is the property of South Plains College, and its contents will be kept confidential to the extent allowed by law.

All requests to view a personnel file must be made in writing and submitted to the Human Resources Director. There will be a 24-hour waiting period to process the request.

Changes in personal information, such as your address, telephone number, emergency contact information, marital status, increase or decrease in family size, should be reported to the Human Resources Office in order to maintain accurate records for tax and insurance purposes.

Employment Status. In order to meet its organizational needs, South Plains College employs a variety of types of employees as follow

§ Exempt. An exempt employee is one who is not subject to the minimum wage and overtime requirements of the Fair Labor Standards Act, based upon the types of duties performed.

§ Non-Exempt. A non-exempt employee is one who is covered by the minimum wage and overtime requirements of the Fair Labor Standards Act, based upon the types of duties performed.

§ Full-Time. Any employee who is regularly scheduled to work thirty (30) or more hours per work week.

§ Part-Time. Any employee who is regularly scheduled to work less than twenty (20) hours per work week.

§ Temporary. Employees hired for a specific project, job or assignment with the understanding that the employment is anticipated to end within a short time.

Performance Appraisals. South Plains College supervisors will strive to provide employees with informal performance appraisals on an ongoing basis, in the form of periodic feedback. In addition to these informal appraisals, employees will be evaluated using a formal written performance appraisal on an annual basis.

Job Training. South Plains College encourages employees to participate in job training to improve their current job skills and to obtain additional, specialized skills

College Requested Training: Those employees hired for positions that require specialized skills will generally be trained at the expense of the College. Approved training sessions may be scheduled during regular working hours (for which the employee will be paid) or at a time convenient to both the College and the employee.

Outside Employment. In most cases, your ability to perform your job satisfactorily will be negatively affected by holding other employment, in addition to your job at South Plains College

The outside employment may present a conflict of interest, if it involves work that is in competition with our College. Scheduling problems may arise when you are asked by your supervisor to work overtime or on weekends. Your performance may suffer, if you are fatigued or distracted by your second job. For these reasons, you must report any outside employment to your supervisor. The College reserves the right to restrict outside employment which may result in conflicts, performance or attendance problems.

Confidentiality. From time to time, you may work with, or have access to, information which is confidential. All South Plains College employees are expected to maintain the confidentiality of "proprietary" information. The College's business plans, sales and marketing activities, pricing information, financial information, etc., are examples of "proprietary" information. Upon termination of employment, employees are expected to return to the College any documents or items containing information about the College. Violations of confidentiality rules may expose you to disciplinary action, up to and including immediate termination.

Conflict of Interest Policy. Employees of South Plains College are expected to conduct the business of the College with total objectivity. A conflict of interest may exist where an individual stands to gain or lose personally from a College business decision; or where an employee or member of his or her immediate family has an interest, direct or indirect, in an entity dealing with the College, and the interest is of such an extent or nature that his or her decision might be affected or determined by it; or an employee serves in an advisory , consulting, technical, or management capacity for any non-affiliated business organization which does significant business with, or is a competitor of the College. If a conflict of interest or appearance of conflict is unavoidable, an employee should inform his or her supervisor immediately.

The appearance of a conflict of interest may be just as damaging to the College's reputation as a real conflict. All employees are expected to take an objective look at their actions from time to time to determine whether a reasonable observer would have no grounds to believe a conflict of interest exists.

Consulting or Testifying Expert Witness. In order to comply with HE 746, any faculty or professional staff (i.e., a non-classified, full-time employee who is a member of the faculty or staff whose duties include teaching, research, administration or performing professional services, including professional library services), who serves as a consulting or testifying expert witness in any case in which the state is a party, must report this information on the Expert Witness Reporting Form to the office of the Vice President of Finance and Administration no later than 15 days after serving in such capacity .

Employee Communications. Two-way communications between you and your employer are important in developing successful and productive working relationships. South Plains College recognizes that problems, complaints and misunderstandings do occur in spite of the best efforts to prevent them. When such problems arise, we encourage you to consult your supervisor. Normally your supervisor is in the best position to understand the situation and to resolve the problem. If for some reason you do not receive a satisfactory answer, you may follow the College's Grievance Policy.

Remember, South Plains College has an "Open Door Policy." The door is always open if you have suggestions for improvement, questions or concerns, or any work-related problem or issue.


General. South Plains College's compensation policy is to strive to pay wages that are competitive with those in the community and the industry, recognizing individual effort and contribution to the College's success. The basis for an employee's compensation will be his or her knowledge, ability, and scope of responsibilities and the demands of the job. Wage ranges are generally reviewed annually to maintain our competitive posture.

Overtime. Overtime pay is required for non-exempt employees whose hours worked exceed forty in a work week. Paid time off that is not worked, such as holidays, vacation, and leaves, is not counted as "hours worked" for the purpose of calculating overtime. Employees are not allowed to work overtime unless it has been approved in advance by a supervisor. Each employee's time clock record should be accurately recorded to reflect all time actually worked.

Time Clock Record. All non-exempt employees must keep accurate records of their work time, using the time clock provided by the College, as this provides the basis for your compensation. Any employee who falsifies his or her own work hours or logs in for another employee will be subject to discipline up to and including immediate discharge.

Pay Periods and Payroll Deductions. Employees are paid, via paycheck or direct deposit on a monthly basis. South Plains College will have deducted amounts required by law, such as those for federal income tax and social security (FICA), or ordered by a court, such as garnishment of wages. South Plains College will also deduct amounts authorized by the employee in writing, such as for insurance premiums and credit union deposits.


Workers' Compensation Benefits. South Plains College carries workers' compensation insurance, which pays medical expenses resulting from an injury on the job. disability payments are provided if the injured employee is unable to return to work. To be eligible for benefits, employees must comply, at a minimum, with the following procedures

1. All employees must immediately report all accidents/ incidents, which result in injury to themselves or a co-worker to their supervisor and to the South Plains College Human Resources Department. An injury report must be filed before seeking medical attention, except in the case of emergencies. The injured employee must adhere to the treatment prescribed by the physician or hospital. Failure to comply with the above-described procedures may result in non-payment of medical bills and forfeiture of the temporary wage benefit.

2. No payments will be made for any medical expenses, lost time expenses or other expenses of any nature for any employee under the influence of illegal drugs or alcohol.

Holidays. The following days will be observed as paid holidays by the College

§ New Year's Day

§ Martin Luther King Day

§ Easter BreaK

§ Spring Break

§ Memorial Day

§ Independence Day

§ Labor Day

§ Fall Break

§ Thanksgiving Day and Friday following

§ Christmas Break

The holiday will be compensated for regular, full-time employees, who are regularly assigned to work schedules of more than thirty (30) hours per week. Temporary employees are not eligible for holiday pay. Holidays are not treated as "hours worked" for the purpose of calculating overtime pay. If a holiday falls during an employee's scheduled vacation period, the day will be counted as a holiday rather than a vacation day. If a holiday falls on a Saturday or Sunday, the College will designate, in advance, what day(s) will be treated as a holiday. Employee’s not scheduled to work when the holiday is observed will not be compensated for the holiday (i.e. 9-month employees).

Vacation Policy. Paid vacation is provided for regular full-time employees, both exempt and non-exempt, who work a twelve-month schedule who are eligible for vacation benefits. Faculty and regular part-time employees, regardless of the number of months worked, do not accrue vacation benefits.

Accrual of Vacation Days. All eligible employees shall accrue one day of vacation per each month of continuous employment up to a maximum of 10 vacation days. Accrual begins on the official date of hire. Eligible employees must be continuously employed during the College fiscal year to remain eligible. Vacation must be taken before September 1 of the year following the year in which the vacation is accrued or it is forfeited. Vacation time may not be carried forward into the next year, unless the employee deferred scheduled vacation has received approval of the their supervisor, the appropriate Vice President or President.

Scheduling of Vacations. Vacations are usually scheduled and coordinated during the May-August time frame but may be scheduled at any time during the year subject to approval by the employee's supervisor, dean, and vice president or provost. Employees should schedule vacation with their supervisor as far in advance as possible, and such vacations will be granted based upon work schedules. Vacation shall not be scheduled during the following periods:

1. Any period that begins immediately prior or after any scheduled holiday or break (i.e. Fall, Christmas, Spring).
2. Any period scheduled during registration, in-service, or commencement.

Vacation is not treated as "hours worked" for purposes of calculating overtime pay.


In order to meet the personal needs of its employees, South Plains College provides a variety of leaves of absence in the following situations:

Bereavement Leave. Three days of bereavement leave are provided to employees in the event of the death of the employee's spouse, mother, father, sibling, child, mother-in-law, father-in- law, grandparent, sister-in-law or brother-in-law. To the extent that any of these bereavement days fall on the employee's regularly scheduled workday, the leave will be with pay. Time requiring more than 3 working days must be approved by the President

Jury/Witness Duty. An employee who is called to serve on a jury will be granted time off to fulfill his or her civic duty. The employee should submit a copy of the jury summons to his or her supervisor in order to be eligible for jury leave. An employee who submits a statement from the court detailing the dates served will be paid their normal compensation.

Voting Leave. Any employee who does not have two consecutive non-work hours while the polls are open on election day will be given up to two hours off with pay in order to vote.

Family and Medical Leave Policy. South Plains College complies with the provisions of the Family and Medical Leave Act ("FMLA ") of 1993, and applicable state law, which provides that eligible employees may take leaves of absence for South Plains College reasons.

Employee Eligibility. An employee is not eligible to take a FMLA leave unless he or she (1) works at a South Plains College location where there are 50 or more employees who work within a 75-mile radius; (2) has worked at South Plains College for at least 52 weeks; (3) worked at least 1,250 hours in the twelve months prior to the requested commencement of leave; (4) has not used all available FMLA leave in the 12 months looking back from the date the requested leave commences; and (5) there is a qualifying event.

Qualifying Event. Under FMLA, there are only four qualifying events -- (1) birth and care of the employee's newborn child; (2) placement of a child with the employee for adoption or foster care; (3) to care for the employee's spouse, child or parent with a serious health condition (this does not include in-laws); or (4) the employee's own serious health condition which prevents him or her from performing the essential functions of the job, including workers' compensation leaves.

Amount of Leave. Eligible employees may take up to twelve weeks of leave during a rolling twelve month period. The twelve month period is determined by measuring backward from the date an employee takes any FMLA leave. Example: If an employee used 4 weeks of leave beginning on 2-1-98, another 4 weeks of leave beginning 6-1-98 and 4 weeks of leave beginning 12-1-98, the employee would not be entitled to any additional leave until 2-1-99. On 2-1-99, the employee would be entitled to 4 weeks of leave, and on 6-1, the employee would be entitled to an additional 4 weeks, etc. Spouses who are employed by South Plains College, and who request FMLA leave for the birth, adoption, or foster care placement of a child with the employee, are eligible for a combined twelve weeks between the two employees.

Employee Notice. If the reason for the FMLA leave is foreseeable, the employee is to give South Plains College thirty days notice. If the need for leave is not foreseeable, the employee is expected to notify South Plains College as soon as possible and, in no event, more than two days after knowing of the need for leave. Notice to South Plains College is accomplished by asking your supervisor for a Family and Medical Leave and completing a FMLA Request Form, which is available from the Human Resources Department. If the reason for the leave is a family member's serious health condition or that of the employee, the employee must complete a Certification of Health Care Provider form which must be returned to the Human Resources Department within fifteen calendar days from the request for leave.

Pay and Benefits During FMLA Leave. Generally, FMLA leave is unpaid. However, an eligible employee must use earned but unused paid time off (i.e., vacation, sick days, etc.) during the absence.

The employee's health plan insurance coverage will be maintained during the leave under the same conditions as if the employee had continued to work. This means that the employee must continue to pay for the optional coverage’s he or she normally pays toward the premium or risk cancellation of health benefits coverage. The employee also has the option to temporarily suspend coverage during the FMLA leave, if the cost of premiums is a burden. Information on how and when to make premium payments will be provided to the employee in writing at the beginning of the FMLA leave. Benefits, such as sick time, vacation, bonus eligibility do not accrue during a FMLA leave.

Return to Work. The employee should notify the College of his or her intent to return to work two weeks prior to the anticipated date of return. South Plains College requires a "fitness for duty" certification from the employee's health care provider verifying the ability to return to work, with or without reasonable accommodation of the employee's disability, if any. If the employee returns to work prior to the expiration of available FMLA leave, the employee will normally be returned to his or her former position or a comparable position. If, however , the employee cannot return to work prior to the expiration of the employer's available FMLA leave, there is no guarantee of reinstatement. Such discharged employees are welcome to reapply for employment when they are able and willing to return to work.


Attendance. South Plains College expects regular and timely attendance from all employees. Excessive absences and tardiness burden your co-workers and will be a significant factor in your continued employment, performance appraisals, salary reviews and in evaluating advancement opportunities.

Absences for reasons other than unexpected illness, injury or other emergency must be scheduled in advance with your supervisor. On those occasions when you are unable to report to work due to unexpected illness, injury or other emergency, you must personally notify your supervisor at least fifteen minutes before your scheduled starting time. If your supervisor is not available, notify the administrator on duty. The failure to call in, as required under this policy, will be treated as an absence. Three consecutive workdays of absence without proper notification will be treated as a voluntary resignation. An employee who will be absent for more than one day is expected to contact their supervisor daily unless other arrangements have been made. Your supervisor may request a doctor's release to return to work for absences due to illness or injury which last two days or longer.

Sick Leave. All full-time employees receive paid sick leave at the rate of 1 day for each month of full-time service up to a maximum of 12 days per year. This includes full-time employees who work less than a full 12-month year (i.e. 9-10 months). Sick leave may be used when an employee or an employee's dependent is ill, or for an employee's or employee's dependents' medical or dental appointments. Additionally, 3 of the 12 days may be taken as personal days. Sick leave may be carried to subsequent years; however , employees can carry a maximum of 60 days. To be eligible for paid sick/personal leave, the employee's supervisor must be notified before leave is taken. At a minimum, employees are required to notify their supervisor at the start of each workday missed.

Standards of Conduct. To ensure orderly operations and provide the best possible work environment, South Plains College expects employees to follow rules of conduct that will protect the interests and safety of all employees and the College. While it is not possible to list all forms of conduct that are considered unacceptable in the workplace, the following examples are provided to demonstrate what conduct may result in disciplinary action, up to and including discharge of employment:

§ Falsification of College records, including, but not limited to, employment application and time cards.

§ Theft, fraud, gambling, weapons or explosives in the workplace. Threatening or intimidating conduct, including fighting, horseplay and practical jokes, which adversely affect operations, damage College property or endanger persons on the College's premises

§ Use of threatening, intimidating, coercive or abusive language in the workplace.

§ Insubordination (refusal to comply with instructions) or failure to perform reasonable duties as assigned.

§ Use of College material, time or equipment for the manufacture or production of an article for unauthorized purposes or personal use.

§ Immoral or indecent conduct in the workplace.

§ Performance, which does not meet the requirements of the job.

§ Possession, distribution, sale, transfer, use or being under the influence of alcohol or drugs in violation of the College's Substance Abuse Policy.

§ Excessive absenteeism or leaving the College premises during working hours without permission from the supervisor.

Corrective Action. South Plains College intends to address violations of the standards of conduct through progressive discipline. Progressive discipline means that, with respect to most disciplinary problems, an employee will normally be subject to a verbal warning, followed by a written warning, and then discharge from employment. Employees should recognize, however, that certain types of violations are serious enough to justify immediate suspension or even discharge of employment with no prior warning. By using progressive discipline, the College hopes that most employee problems can be corrected at an early stage benefiting both the employee and South Plains College.

Dress Code. First impressions are extremely important. For this reason, employees of the College are requested and expected to dress in a manner, which is not only suitable for their position, but, which presents a positive image of the College. Supervisors are responsible for setting and maintaining standards that are fitting to the employees and which present a positive image of the College.

Smoking. In the interest of everyone's safety, health, and comfort, smoking has been restricted to specified areas outside the building.

Harassment. South Plains College will not tolerate harassment of its employees, whether committed by a fellow employee, a member of management, or a visitor to our workplace, such as a vendor or student. All employees are responsible for ensuring that the workplace is free from harassment, especially when such conduct is based upon gender, race, age, religion, national origin, disability or other protected categories. All employees, including managers and supervisors, will be subject to disciplinary action, up to and including discharge from employment, for any act of harassment they commit. Examples of prohibited harassment include, but are not limited to:

§ Use of slurs, epithets, and words that degrade an individual, even when used in a joking fashion;

§ Unwelcome advances, demands or requests for sexual acts or favors, and other verbal or physical conduct of a sexual nature, such as flirting, touching and graphic comments about another person's dress or body;

§ Display of cartoons, photographs, drawings, pinups, posters, calendars, or images that are offensive or degrading to others;

§ Conduct which has the purpose of substantially interfering with an individual ' s work performance or which creates an intimidating, hostile or offensive work environment; or

§ Conditioning hire, continued employment, or terms and conditions of employment upon submission to sexual advances or requests for sexual favors.

If you feel you are being harassed, or if you have knowledge of harassment of a co- employee, immediately bring it to the attention of your supervisor. If for any reason you do not feel comfortable discussing the matter with your supervisor, contact the Human Resources Department or any member of the administration whom you feel comfortable in approaching. All reports will be promptly investigated in as confidential a manner as possible. Based upon the findings of the investigation, the College will take prompt and appropriate action to remedy any violations of this policy.

No employee who brings a good faith report of harassment to the attention of the College will suffer retaliation or other adverse employment action as a consequence. Any employee, including managers and supervisors, who is found to have retaliated against an employee who reported a violation of this policy, in good faith, will be subject to discipline up to and including discharge from employment. It is important for employees to report incidents of harassment, because without your assistance, violations could go undetected and unremedied.

Alcohol and Drugs. South Plains College has a viable interest in maintaining safe, healthy and productive working conditions for its employees. Being at work under the influence of a controlled substance/illegal drug or alcohol poses serious safety and health risks, not only to the user, but to all who work with the user. Moreover, the unauthorized use, possession, distribution or sale of such substances in the workplace is not only unlawful, it poses unacceptable risks to the efficient operations of our College. With these basic concerns, the College hereby establishes the following guidelines.

South Plains College Employees’ Substance Abuse Policy. South Plains College adopts this policy to implement the Drug-Free Schools and Communities Act Amendments to 1989, Public Law 101-226. The College strictly prohibits the use of alcohol and controlled substances by employees while on college property. State law shall be strictly enforced at all times on all property controlled by the South Plains College District in regard to the possession and consumption of alcoholic beverages and controlled substances.

No employee shall possess, use, transmit, or attempt to possess, use, or transmit or be under the influence of or impaired by (legal intoxication not required), any of the following substances on any property controlled by the College district.

1. Any controlled substance or dangerous drug as defined by state and federal law, including but not limited to marijuana, any narcotic drug, hallucinogen, stimulant, depressant, amphetamine, or barbiturate.

2. Alcohol or any alcoholic beverage.

3. Any abusable glue, aerosol paint, or any other chemical substance for the purpose of inhalation intoxication.

4. Any other intoxicant, or mood-changing, mind-altering or behavior-altering drugs

An employee who uses a drug authorized by a licensed physician through a prescription specifically for that employee’s use shall not be considered to have violated this rule. It is the responsibility of the employee to report to his or her supervisor should the employee be taking a prescription drug that would impair performance of assigned duties.

The transmittal, sale, or attempted sale of what is represented to be any of the above-listed substances is also prohibited under this policy.

Where there is *reasonable cause to suspect the use of illegal drugs or unauthorized controlled substances or alcohol abuse by an employee, or where the nature of the work assignment will involve substantial safety, security, or economic risk, the college may require the employee to be tested. Employees who refuse to be tested orwho violate this prohibition may be referred to drug counseling programs, drug rehabilitation programs, or employee assistance programs or may be terminated from employment with the College.

*Reasonable Cause means:

A. That the employee has been involved in a workplace accident or an incident resulting in personal injury or damage to property, or workplace circumstances that could have resulted in personal injury or damage to property, and a supervisory employee has a reasonable suspicion that the employee’s acts or omissions contributed to the occurrence or severity of the accident, incident, or circumstance; or

B. Behavior, appearance, and/or bodily odor of an employee causes a supervisory employee to have reasonable suspicion that the employee is currently under the influence or impaired by alcohol, drugs, or a controlled substance, based upon specific personal observations of the supervisor concerning the behavior, speech, or body odors of the employee; or

C. The return to work of an employee following participation in a rehabilitation program such an EAP; and/or

D. Other circumstances that would indicate that the employee is reporting to work in other than a sober and reliable state, free from the influence of alcohol or drugs. Such circumstances may include, but shall not be limited to, excessive tardiness, absenteeism, or reduction in job productivity.

As a condition of employment with the College, each employee shall abide by the terms or the requirements and prohibitions set out in this statement and shall notify the College of any criminal drug statute conviction for a violation occurring in the work place no later than five (5) days after such conviction.

Within thirty (30) days of receiving notice of a conviction for drug statute violation occurring in the work place, the College shall either (1) take appropriate personnel action against the employee, up to and including termination, or (2) require the employee to participate satisfactorily in a drug abuse assistance or rehabilitation program approved for such purposes by a federal, state or local health agency, law enforcement agency, or other appropriate agency.

The Drug-Free Work Place Act of 1988 applies to employers who receive federal grants/contracts of $25,000 or more.

Weapons. South Plains College prohibits all persons who enter College premises from carrying a handgun, firearm or prohibited weapon of any kind, regardless of whether the person is licensed to carry the weapon or not. This policy applies to all College employees, contract and temporary employees, visitors on College property, and customers and contractors on College property, regardless of whether or not they are licensed to carry a concealed weapon. The only exceptions to this policy are police officers and security guards. All College employees are also prohibited from carrying a weapon while in the course and scope of performing their job for the College, whether they are on College property at the time or not, and whether they are licensed to carry a handgun or not. Employees may not carry a weapon covered by this policy while performing any task on the College's behalf. This policy also prohibits weapons at any College-sponsored functions, such as parties or picnics.

Prohibited weapons include any form of weapon or explosive restricted under local, state or federal regulation. This includes all firearms, knives over three inches in length, or other weapons covered by law. Legal, chemical dispensing devices, such as pepper spray, which are sold for personal protection, are not covered by this policy. College property covered by this policy includes, without limitation, all College-owned or leased buildings and surrounding areas, such as sidewalks, walkways, driveways and parking lots under the College's ownership or control. College vehicles are covered by this policy at all times regardless of whether they are on College property at the time.

The College reserves the right to conduct searches of any person, vehicle or object that enters onto College property in order to enforce this policy. Items that may be searched include, but are not limited to, lockers, desks, purses, briefcases, baggage, toolboxes, lunch sacks, clothing, vehicles parked on College property, and any other item in which a weapon may be hidden. Searches may be conducted by College administrators or local authorities. To the extent the search is requested by College administrators and the employee is present, the employee may refuse the search; however, such refusal may result in discharge from employment for refusal to cooperate.


A vital part of our continued success depends on how safely we work together as a team. Each of us is responsible for observing safe work practices. This includes wearing protective clothing, footwear, eyewear, ear plugs, etc., as working conditions may require. It includes being careful while lifting and always obtaining help for heavy loads. It includes maintaining a clean and orderly environment, especially returning all tools, equipment, and materials to their proper place after use. It includes familiarizing yourself with all printed and posted material concerning workplace safety before we attempt a task. It includes refraining from horseplay and actions which might distract your co-workers. You should always ask for instructions if you are not certain how to do a job safely. Another aspect of safe work practices concerns proper maintenance and use of tools and equipment. Each of us is responsible for making sure we know how to properly use the equipment we handle in the course of doing our work. Do not attempt to use any tool or piece of equipment unless you know how to do so safely and properly. Check the condition of the tools and equipment you use at the beginning of your shift every day. Do not attempt to use damaged, broken or improperly adjusted or calibrated tools and equipment. They should immediately be taken out of service and reported to your supervisor.

If you have any questions concerning safe work practices, ask your supervisor for assistance. If you observe any unsafe work practices, notify your supervisor immediately. If you discover tools or equipment which do not appear to be in proper working order, report it to your supervisor immediately. If you are injured on the job, report to your supervisor immediately.

Safety Instructions. Employees must be responsible for ensuring that they have been adequately instructed in the use of any item of equipment used in performing his duties. If you ever feel that any equipment is unsafe, or any working condition is unsafe, inform management immediately.

Inspections and Internal Audits. Safety audits may be conducted from time to time anywhere on College premises or in College property, including inspections for drugs and drug paraphernalia. (Refer to section entitled "Drug-Free Workplace.") Packages, lunch boxes and other containers carried into and out of the workplace are subject to inspection by security personnel and supervisors. South Plains College's lockers used by employees are subject to inspection by security personnel and supervisors.

Employees are required to cooperate in any inspection or audit. Failure to cooperate may result in corrective action.

Personal Items. Please properly secure your personal belongings during business hours. South Plains College is not responsible for the loss or damage of any personal items you bring on the premises.


Telephone Use. In order to ensure that the telephone is available for business purposes, the frequency and length of personal telephone calls should be limited.

Computers, Voicemail, Email and the Internet. South Plains College provides computers, voicemail, electronic mail (Email) and Internet access to employees at the College's expense for their use in performing their jobs. Every South Plains College employee is responsible for seeing that these systems are used properly and in accordance with this policy.

South Plains College's systems are part of the business technology platform and should be used for College business purposes only. Personal business should not be conducted by means of South Plains College's systems.

Employees do not have a privacy right in any matter created, received or sent via the College's systems. The College reserves the right to monitor and access any message created, received or sent from South Plains College's systems, in order to assure superior service to our students and to enforce this policy.

The College must know any password(s) you use, as your mailbox may need to be accessed in your absence. You must not, however, disclose your password(s), messages or other information created, received or sent from the College's systems to unauthorized personnel.

Consider the proprietary or confidential nature of College and students' information before relaying it via voicemail or Email. Do not presume it will be kept confidential.

Creation, sending or forwarding voicemail or Email messages which are offensive, intimidating or hostile on the basis of race, gender, color, religion, national origin, disability, age, veteran status or any other legally protected status is grounds for disciplinary action up to and including immediate discharge from employment. Likewise, messages to solicit for personal business, religious, political or other matters unrelated to South Plains College's business is grounds for disciplinary action up to and including immediate discharge from employment.

South Plains College expressly forbids the storage, transmission or viewing of "adult materials" on any College computer or network or in any other form either on the College's premises or via College owned or leased equipment. " Adult materials" include but are not limited to text or graphics in any form that would merit an "R" or "X" rating. Employees may not bring such materials onto College premises. Employees may not use the corporate Internet connection or even a personal Internet provider or service when accessed via College computers. Employees may not use a personally owned computer to connect to any College computer or the College network via modem, ISDN or other connection, to access or transmit adult materials. Employees who receive adult materials in the workplace, in any form, must destroy the materials immediately without forwarding the materials or making copies.

The provisions of South Plains College's distribution and solicitation policy apply fully to the College's systems.

Key Distribution and Return Policy. Keys to College property given to employees as part of their job requirements must be returned immediately upon termination of employment.


I understand that my employment at South Plains College is on an at will basis, and I may quit my job with the College for any reason without contractual obligation. Likewise, I understand that South Plains College may terminate my employment at any time, with or without reason, without contractual obligation. I realize that the policies and procedures contained in this employee manual are intended as guidelines only, and do not create any type of contract of employment.

I certify that I have received, read, and thoroughly understand all sections of the South Plains College Employees' Policy and Procedure Manual. I know it is my responsibility to read and thoroughly understand all sections of the South Plains College Employees’ Policy and Procedures Manual. I understand that failure to comply with the policies and procedures outlined in this manual is grounds for serious disciplinary action up to and including discharge from employment.

Printed Name ________________________________________________

Employee Signature __________________________________________

Date _________________

Revised: 2/13


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