IV.A.1. Hiring Practices

IV.A.1.01 - Promotion, Job Posting, Classification

The System is committed to filling all positions with qualified candidates. The System will attempt to promote qualified employees from within the System when it is in the best interest of the System to do so. All other new and vacant full-time positions will be advertised and posted.

IV.A.1.02 - Fair Employment Practice

The System shall follow lawful hiring practices in the recruitment, selection, and employment of personnel. The System seeks to employ staff and faculty with diverse backgrounds and perspectives to permit a broad and multi-cultural educational experience.

IV.A.1.03 - Employment

Initial, renewal, and promotional employment of all contractual personnel shall be approved by the Chancellor and ratified by the Board.

IV.A.1.04 - Re-employment

With the exception of an employee who departs employment under a Reduction in Force, any former employee rehired by the System after a break in service of twelve months or more shall forfeit accumulated sick leave, credit for prior service, and any salary increase which might have been earned during continued employment.
Any former employee who was discharged for cause under F.13.02 (discharge for cause), or F.13.03 (immediate discharge) or whose contract was not renewed is not eligible for re-employment.

IV.A.1.05 - Selection Guidelines

All managers shall adhere to procedures established by System Human Resources in the selection of all employees. The Board may establish criteria for the selection of the Location Executive Officers, and may further establish special procedures and criteria for other positions as so designated.

IV.A.1.06 - Nepotism

The System may not employ a person hired as an individual or an independent contractor if he or she is related within the second degree by affinity (marriage) or within the third degree by consanguinity (blood) to any member of the Board of Trustees unless the person was already employed by the System before the election or appointment of the Board member and the person's prior employment was continuous for at least thirty (30) days (if the public official was appointed) or at least six (6) months (if the public official was elected).

An employee may not directly supervise a family member. A family member is defined as husband, wife, child (natural, foster, step, adopted), parent (natural, step or adoptive), grandmother, grandfather, grandchild, sister, brother, niece nephew, aunt, uncle or in-laws in the same degree of relationship as listed above or domestic partner. An employee may not serve in the direct line of supervision over family member unless conflicts are resolved and approved by the LEO.

IV.A.1.07 - Pre-Employment Physical

The recommended candidate hired into any position that has been identified as requiring a pre-employment physical must be referred to a System-recommended physician to undergo a physical examination to determine if he or she may safely perform the essential functions of the position, prior to commencing work for the System. The physician shall communicate directly with the System Office Human Resources Department concerning any physical restrictions which apply to each such prospective employee.

IV.A.1.08 - Reference Checks/Identification Badges

Prior to making a job offer to any candidate for employment, the hiring manager must conduct reference checks. The hiring manager should contact persons or entities that the hiring manager believes to be familiar with the candidate's work history, or work-related skills, knowledge, and experience.

Prior to making a job offer to any candidate for employment as a peace officer, the System Director of Public Safety shall ensure the completion of a comprehensive review of the candidate's employment history, including a review of the records maintained by the Texas Commission on Law Enforcement (TCLEOSE)-and by each law enforcement agency for which the candidate has previously worked.

The System will provide all part-time and full-time peace officers who provide services for the System with identification badges as required by state law.

IV.A.1.09 - Criminal Background Checks

Each applicant for employment as a student worker, part-time employee, full-time employee or volunteer is required to complete the section of the application or designated release form concerning his or her criminal history prior to performing any type of work in the System.

Prior to commencing employment or volunteer work, the recommended candidate for any LSCS position shall be required to successfully complete a criminal background check, which may also include a fingerprint check.
The LSCS police department or an outside contracted company will collect available crime record information to determine if any selected candidate for a position has a criminal history before a final job offer is made to the candidate.

If records are found that document the candidate has been convicted of or received deferred adjudication for a crime, the records will be reviewed by Human Resources and the Location Executive Officer (LEO), to determine whether the person will be approved for hiring.

The fact that a person has been convicted of a misdemeanor or a felony will not necessarily disqualify him or her from employment with the System, but the responsibilities of the position, the nature of the crime, the length of time since conviction, and record of the candidate since the conviction will be considered.

Any persons, including volunteers, who are identified to work with programs or activities with a special focus on service for minor children must have a comprehensive criminal background check completed prior to commencing any duties with children. No person shall be hired if his or her background reflects a conviction for a child related sexual or predatory offense. For the persons who may work with minor children, the term "conviction" means entering a plea of nolo contendre, a plea of guilty, or being found guilty of the crime. Receiving deferred adjudication is also considered a "conviction."

IV.A.1.10 - Other Review of Background

Additional background checking may be conducted, according to the specific security concerns of a position; however, when such is required, the job posting shall so notify all applicants.

IV.A.1.11 - Fair Credit Reporting Act

Whenever LSCS procures a consumer report from a third party company (to include but not limited to criminal background check, sanctions check, educational, and work history) and the applicant is denied employment, either wholly or partly, because of information contained in a consumer report, a disclosure will be made to the candidate of the name and address of the consumer reporting agency making such report. The candidate will be provided a copy of the report and a statement of applicable consumer rights.

 

LSCS Policy Manual Section adopted by the Board of Trustees on August 7, 2008

IV.A.2. Credentials, Records and Confidentiality

IV.A.2.01 - Credentials

Each successful applicant selected to serve as an adjunct instructor, faculty member, administrator, Location Executive Officer (LEO), or Chancellor must promptly submit to his or her hiring manager transcripts and other required credentials. The chief instructional officer at each college shall be responsible for verifying that all faculty, including adjunct faculty members, meet all requirements of Southern Association of Colleges and Schools (SACS) and the Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board (Coordinating Board). The LEO may authorize the submission of credentials after commencing work for the System in unusual circumstances. Failure to submit the official credentials by the end of the new employee's first semester or the presence of any misrepresentation of credentials or on the applicant's resume may be grounds for disciplinary action up to and including discharge of employment.

IV.A.2.02 - Official Personnel File

The System's Human Resources Department shall be the custodian of official personnel records maintained for each employee.

The following types of records will be maintained in the System Human Resources office. The Human Resources office may create separate or sub-files in addition to a person's official personnel file for sensitive information such as criminal background, workers' compensation, and medical information.

  1. Copies of completed I-9;
  2. Information pertaining to an employee's benefits, leave and workers' compensation claims;
  3. Unemployment claims information provided by Texas Workforce Commission; and
  4. Official personnel file records including:
    1. Application and resume
    2. Personnel Action Request forms
    3. Positions held
    4. Personal information (name, address, emergency contact information)
    5. Official transcripts
    6. Copies of employment contracts
    7. Memoranda of assignment
    8. Evaluations, commendations
    9. Participation in professional development and training
    10. Official communications regarding performance or misconduct (letters of reprimand, corrective action plans and the employee's written response to official communications about performance or misconduct)

IV.A.2.03 - Access to Official Personnel File Information

Official Personnel Files are kept in the Human Resources Department, and are confidential to the extent permitted or required by law. Therefore, access shall be limited as follows:

Each employee or former employee may request to view and copy information contained in his or her official records by personally visiting the Human Resources Department.

A supervisor may review the "official personnel file" of any System employee reporting to him or her, however the Human Resources Department may deny access to files or information deemed sensitive (such as criminal background, workers' compensation and/or medical information.

A System hiring manager may review the evaluations and any disciplinary records maintained in an applicant employee's official file prior to making a job offer.

System officials in the chain of supervision over an employee may review the Official Personnel File of an employee where such an official has a legitimate need to know in the performance of his/her job duties and responsibilities.

IV.A.2.04 - Requests for Information about LSCS Employees and Former Employees

The Human Resources Department will provide the following information about current or former employees unless disclosure is prohibited by law:

  1. Dates of employment;
  2. Position(s) held; and
  3. Status at time of departure.

Other information may be provided when the Human Resources office is presented with written authorization from the employee or in conformance with the laws of Texas and the United States.

Information about LSCS police officers that relates to their home address, home telephone number, social security number, and that reveals whether the police officer has family members is confidential as long as the officer has notified LSCS in writing of the desire to keep it confidential.

The Chief Human Resources Officer or his or her designee will notify an employee by letter or e-mail of any Public Information Act Request seeking the release of his or her employment records, unless prohibited by law. Upon receipt of a Public Information Act Request that seeks information that may be protected from disclosure, the System will request an opinion from the Attorney General of the State of Texas regarding the propriety of such disclosure.

IV.A.2.05 - Use of Social Security Numbers

All applicants for employment are required to either disclose their social security number (SSN) as part of their application or to identify a number that contains the same number of digits. This number will be used as a unique number in order to identify the applicant within the System's applicant tracking system.

Employees who are selected and hired must provide their SSN for payroll and benefits purposes before they can be employed. Failure to provide a valid SSN may be grounds for termination of employment. The System will report income and SSNs for all employees to Federal and State agencies on forms required by law.

The System will take steps to restrict the use of an employee's SSN to those uses which are required by law and to take steps to protect against the inadvertent disclosure of the number.

IV.A.2.06 - Confidentiality of Employment Decisions

To protect the privacy of LSCS employees, supervisors and other administrators will not discuss employment decisions except with the employee, supervisor, Human Resources representatives, his or her representative, and with elected leaders of official employee groups.

 

LSCS Policy Manual Section adopted by the Board of Trustees on August 7, 2008

IV.A.3. Immigration and Hiring Non-Citizens

IV.A.3.01 - Non-Discrimination

The System may employ immigrant and non-immigrant aliens within the provisions of the Illegal Immigration Reform and Immigrant Responsibility Act, as amended. All persons employed by the System must show proof of authorization to work in the United States. The System will verify employment authorizations for all employees in a non-discriminatory manner.

All employees must complete the Bureau of Citizenship and Immigration Services (BCIS) Form I-9 on, or before the first date of employment. Within three business days of employment, hiring departments must ensure that documentation is provided by the employee to establish their work eligibility and identification.

IV.A.3.02 - Immigrants

Immigrants are persons who have been granted permanent resident status, but who are not United States citizens. Immigrants may engage in all forms of employment.

IV.A.3.03 - Non-Immigrants

Non-immigrants are persons who are admitted into the United States temporarily for specific purposes and periods of time. The System may employ non-immigrants only if permission to work in the United States has been authorized by the Bureau of Citizenship and Immigration Services (BCIS).

Two categories of non-immigrant visa holders are eligible to work in the System:

  1. F-1 visas
  2. J-1 visas

Except in unusual circumstances involving persons with unique skills, the System does not sponsor non-immigrants for employment.

IV.A.3.04 - F-1 Visa

Non-immigrants with F-1 visas are persons temporarily admitted to this country under Bureau of Citizenship and Immigration Services (BCIS) rules, to study at a higher education institution.

International students who are taking a full course of study and otherwise maintaining valid F-1 status may hold any on-campus employment, less than 20 hours per week during the fall and spring semesters. During the summer or when school is not in session, students on F-1 visas may work full-time when not enrolled in classes. The students' employment must not displace a United States citizen or permanent resident.

Students with F-1 visas seeking off-campus employment must receive permission for this type of employment from the College Human Resources Manager and Designated School Official (DSO).

Students with F -1 visas who are enrolled at an institution of higher education other than the System and seek employment with the System under "optional practical training" or "curricular practical training" must provide the System with documentation stating the terms and limitations under which they may be employed.

Spouses or children of students on F-l visas may not be employed by the System.

IV.A.3.05 - J-1 Visa

Non-immigrants with J-1 visas are students, scholars, trainees, teachers, professors, research assistants, specialists or similar persons temporarily admitted to this country to participate in a program designated by the United States Information Agency.

A non-immigrant with a J-1 visa who is a student may be employed in part-time employment with the System if he or she presents a confirmation letter from his or her sponsor. Non-immigrants with J-1 visas who are professors employed by the System or another college or university may engage in employment stated on their Form IAP66. All departments must check with the Designated School Official (DSO) at the campus of the J-1 visa-holder prior to offering him or her employment.

IV.A.3.06 - Benefits Eligibility

All Non-citizens who are employed by the district are eligible for the same benefits as are other employees in comparable positions, except as noted below:

  1. Immigrants employed by the System must participate in one of the System's retirement plans and in income tax withholding.
  2. Non-immigrants who have been authorized to work by the Bureau of Citizenship and Immigration Services may not be enrolled in any System retirement plan.

 

LSCS Policy Manual Section adopted by the Board of Trustees on August 7, 2008