Dale L. Dickson, Director
Your Direct Hire Services Contact
Licking Regional Educational Service Center
Direct Hire Services
General background and philosophy of providing Direct Hire services
For many decades Educational Service Centers have provided an avenue of collaborative, consortia minded, and uniquely designed cost effective support to local school districts to assist them in carrying out the exceptional work they are doing for students, staff and community. The Licking Regional E.S.C. firmly believes that while we have certain obligations that flow from the State of Ohio to support our local school districts, we focus on creating and providing services to meet the needs as identified by our local school districts. Sometimes the need is best met by providing “Direct Hire Services” (Where specialists or support personnel are hired on a full or part-time basis to serve a specific school district with full costs paid by the district to which the employee is assigned).
It is important to note that for administrative purposes the E.S.C. administration of these locally assigned employees is divided into two basic categories; “Related Services” and “Direct Hire”. This document only addresses “Direct Hire” employees.
It has been the desire of our school districts and E.S.C. to treat the direct hire employees as local employees even though the legal employment, benefits, and compensation are conducted by the E.S.C. Both the local school district and the E.S.C. want these direct hire employees to feel like, and know, they are a vital member of the local district staff. We at the E.S.C. want local district supervisors to know that we stand ready to assist with any direct hire employee issues that may arise (attendance issues, discipline issues, re-employment issues, non-renewal issues, etc.).
Direct Hire Responsibilities and Timelines
The E. S. C. Governing Board takes action to renew contracts for E.S.C. direct hire employees at its regular meeting in April. Board meetings are currently set for the fourth Thursday of each month with November and December exceptions. Therefore, The E.S.C. Director of Auxiliary Services will need school district direct hire supervisors to submit their recommendations, for direct hire contract renewals for the following school year by March 15 so the contracts can be prepared for the Superintendent to make recommendations to the board in April.
If a school district has concerns with a direct hire employee that could rise to the level of a recommendation for non-renewal it is imperative that the Director of Auxiliary Services be notified immediately. In such a case the E.S.C. will need to see evidence that the employee has been evaluated properly and given time to make improvement in the areas of service deemed problematic. If the E.S.C. determines proper steps have been followed and a non-renewal is appropriate it will need time to adhere to the legal process of non-renewal in accordance with Ohio Revised Code, or find another position for said employee that better suits his/her skill set. Should a direct hire employee be non-renewed or terminated, the local school district is responsible for any run out costs (i.e. unemployment, etc.).
Some districts have shared that they send out a survey to E.S.C. direct hire employees in January each year asking the employee’s intent for continuing in the same position. This helps the local district supervisor develop recommendations for the E.S.C. with respect to contracts for the ensuing school year. The E.S.C. recognizes this as a good practice.
Evaluations for E.S.C. direct hire employees are conducted by the local school district as assigned by the named local district direct hire supervisor using local school district evaluation forms. A copy of all evaluations conducted for E.S.C. direct hire employees are to be sent to the E.S.C. Director of Auxiliary Services (preferably at the time of contract renewal recommendations which is by March 15). As the employing entity the E.S.C. must keep a copy of said evaluations in the direct hire employee personnel file.
In the case of licensed teachers employed as E.S.C. direct hires assigned to school districts, the local school district will make arrangements to include said teachers in their OTES evaluation system according to their local policy for state evaluation reporting purposes.
The E.S.C. requires all employees who are not serving in a clerical or custodial position to maintain a credential with the Ohio Department of Education. By doing so, employees are entered into the state’s Rap-back system. The E.S.C. Superintendent’s Secretary maintains a record of licensure for all E.S.C. employees. As a courtesy to our employees, including our direct hire employees, our office sends notices throughout the year encouraging the prompt renewal of an expiring credential. Ultimately, the responsibility to renew a credential falls with the employee. To avoid a possible delay in ODE processing during the summer, which could ultimately lead to the chance of not being paid at the start of the new school year due to an expired credential, we encourage employees to renew their credential as early as possible. Local district encouragement for the direct hire employees to renew early is appreciated!
Should the local school district desire to place additional direct hire employees in their school district, please contact the E.S.C. Director of Auxiliary Services with said request so that cost estimates can be developed and necessary assistance provided in the posting of said new positions.
It is important that all E.S.C. direct hire employees maintain a work email address so that we are able to contact them directly with information pertaining to their employment, professional development requirements, licensure, and other important information. Emails that are assigned to direct hire employees will vary with some direct hire employees using a local school district email address and others using LACA assigned email addresses. The Director of Auxiliary Services will utilize the email on file for payroll with the E.S.C. Treasurer’s Office for all communications with direct hire employees and will maintain that same email on the master list of direct hire employees used to conduct business during the school year.
Local school districts to which the direct hire employee is assigned are responsible for supervision of that employee. In cases where the local school district wishes to employ a specialist as a direct hire, as opposed to participating in any available related services consortia (i.e. OT, RBT, SLP, etc.) said direct hire employee may participate in any related services professional development opportunities that may be proved to the related services group; but, supervision of such direct hire employees remains a responsibility of the local school district.
In the event that a resignation is received from a direct hire employee, it is important that both the E.S.C. Director of Auxiliary Services and the local district direct hire supervisor receive notice immediately. Resignations should be received in writing from the employee and a copy maintained in the E.S.C. personnel file. Upon receiving a resignation submitted to the local district, the named local district direct hire supervisor will send a copy to the E.S.C. Director of Auxiliary Services. Should the E.S.C. receive such resignation, the E.S.C. Director of Auxiliary Services will immediately notify the named local district direct hire supervisor to discuss posting for a replacement.
We understand that our school districts desire to maintain supervisory functions over the employees assigned in their district as E.S.C. direct hires. This helps the employee feel that they are an integral member of the local school district staff and reduces confusion on the part of the employee as to who is actually supervising them. However, when attempts at the local level to resolve problematic issues with a direct hire employee are not resolving the issue, please contact the E.S.C. Director of Auxiliary Services for assistance with any disciplinary action that would be more appropriate coming from us as the employing entity.
Position Postings and Interviewing
The E.S.C. is ready to assist our local school districts in posting and if desired, interviewing of candidates, for any open direct hire position they might have available. Upon request, we will post open direct hire positions on our E.S.C. website and if desired through Springboard and OH REAP. If you would like to request that service, the local district should provide the Director of Auxiliary Services the language they would like to have included in the posting for the direct hire position. Please include the name and contact information to whom the candidate should submit their letter of interest, resume and references. Our office stands ready to assist you in this process.
All E.S.C. direct hire employees must complete required annual professional development as prescribed through the E.S.C. Public School Works online program for the E.S.C. to meet its obligations for such employee training under Ohio Revised Code.
Direct Hire employees who require Crisis Prevention & Intervention Training (CPI) may, at the local school district’s discretion, receive necessary CPI training from local district resources that are utilized to train their local staff, or may choose to have the Direct Hire employee participate in available CPI training offered by the Educational Service Center. If the local school district chooses to have the E.S.C. provide the training, the local school district will be charged and invoiced separately for the cost of said CPI training.
August 1 – 15 Opening day meetings for all E.S.C. direct hire employees conducted collectively or in each respective district as determined necessary by E.S.C. Superintendent in consultation with local districts.
All state license must be on file for all E.S.C. direct hire employees prior to commencing work in their respective school districts.
August 15 Director of Auxiliary Services sends initial staffing information spreadsheet to named Local District Direct Hire Supervisors.
September 30 All E.S.C. direct hire employees are to complete the first round of required online professional development on Public School Works.
January 31 All E.S.C. direct hire employees are to complete any second round online professional development that may be required.
Reminder notice to all E.S.C. direct hire employees sent by E.S.C. Director of Auxiliary Services encouraging early renewal of expiring state license.
Local district named E.S.C. direct hire supervisor surveys E.S.C. direct hire employees on their intent to return for the following school year.
March 15 Named Local District Supervisors of E.S.C. direct hire employees submit to the E.S.C. Director of Auxiliary Services the following:
- List of direct hires for whom contracts are to be renewed.
- List of any direct hires being recommended for non-renewal.
- A copy of the local district evaluation that has been conducted to be placed in the E.S.C. direct hire employee’s personnel file.
April E.S.C. Governing Board takes action to renew contracts for direct hire employees as recommended by the E.S.C. Superintendent.
Non-renewals submitted – Ohio Revised Code deadlines for non-teaching and teaching employees will be followed.