Parents | Caregivers

I'm a parent or planning to become a caregiver. What does the College offer for parents? Childcare? Education savings? Caregivers of older adults and people with disabilities?

The following information is for informational purposes only. Please contact the responsible units for information. The Office of Human Resources is the definitive source of information about employee policies and procedures.

Resources for New Parents and Caregivers

Family Medical Leave Act (FMLA): Eligible employees can use FMLA leave during pregnancy or after the birth of a child. Under the regulations, a mother can use 12 weeks of FMLA leave for the birth of a child, for prenatal care and incapacity related to pregnancy, and for her own serious health condition following the birth of a child. A father can use FMLA leave for the birth of a child and to care for his spouse who is incapacitated (due to pregnancy or child birth). Leave with and without pay may be used. The paid and unpaid leave will run concurrently. Employees must provide medical certification following specific guidelines. Refer to Human Resources Policies (FMLA Policy and FMLA FAQs) for additional information concerning the Family Medical Leave Act.

SC Insurance Benefits GuideInsurance information is provided in the guide. Also, please see the "Coming Attractions – maternity management" program section. This program offers pregnant women and new moms educational materials and counseling sessions conducted by nurses. Sign up for the program to learn how to receive an electric or manual breast pump from a participating health care provider – at no cost to you. Please read the sections about preauthorization and possible penalties for not preauthorizing. 

AFLAC Short-Term Disability Plans: Mothers may choose to purchse a personal Short-Term Disability plan prior to pregnancy. Contact the College of Charleston's AFLAC representative Pat Osti via email (patricia_osti@us.aflac.com) or phone (843.509.3135) if you would like to sign up or receive additional information. 

Advanced Sick LeaveMothers(-to-be) may be eligible to request up to 15 days of advance sick leave (for other types of caregivers, please contact HR). The request form is online at http://hr.cofc.edu/forms/assets/leave/advanced-sick-leave-request.pdf. Contact HR for additional information.

Reduced Teaching for New Faculty Parents: We are committed to fostering an educational community with a flexible and supportive work environment where faculty can thrive in both their professional and personal lives. Eligible faculty may be interested in requesting a modification of their teaching duties before/after the birth or adoption of a child. Refer to the Modification of Duties Procedure (.PDF) and Modified Duties Application Form (.DOC), and contact the Office of the Provost or your Department Chair for additional information. This information is included to assist non-instructional staff who may co-parent with instructional staff.

CofC Telecommuting (Work from Home) and Flexible Work Schedule Information: Read the Telecommuting Policy and communicate with your supervisor about options that may be available to you. Contact HR for questions. 

Unpaid, job-protected leave for “eligible” employees: Refer to Human Resources Policies (See FMLA Policy and FMLA FAQs) for additional information concerning the Family Medical Leave Act.

Depression and Anxiety during pregnancy and after the baby's birth: Having a baby can be one of the most rewarding events in your life, but it can also be stressful. Many mothers experience sadness, fear, confusion and anxiety during pregnancy and after childbirth. Depression can interfere with your ability to function, including your ability to care for yourself and your child. The good news is that it’s treatable, and the Mom Support Program can help. The Mom Support Program is free and voluntary. If you or someone you love could benefit from this program, please call 1-800-868-1032, ext. 25835.

Adjusting Insurance PlansAfter the birth of a child or other qualifying life events, parent(s) may need to update their insurance plans. Information is online at http://peba.sc.gov/iforms.html

Adjusting W-4 Witholdings: After the birth of a child, parent(s) may choose to update their W-4 forms. Forms are located at https://www.irs.gov/pub/irs-pdf/fw4.pdf

GetCareSC: guide to available resources for older adults, people with disabilities, their family members and caregivers in South Carolina

Future Scholar 529 plan: 529 plans are tax-advantaged education savings vehicles held by an account owner for a designated beneficiary. Options are available to help you save today for your child's future college education. Additional information is also available at http://treasurer.sc.gov/citizens/saving-for-college/.

Free/Discounted legal services, including will preparation: Through Deer Oaks EAP Service's Legal Assist, members receive free consultation with a qualified attorney either on the phone or in person. Online support is also available with legal forms, a library of legal articles, and interactive simple will preparation.

Childcare and Family Care

N.E. Miles Early Childhood Development Center (ECDC) On-campus childcare and preschool opportunity serving children two years old through kindergarten. Dependent children have the opportunity to attend on a space-available basis. Contact the director to be placed on the waitlist if an opening is unavailable. Space is limited. 
Family Care Resources The College provides EAP's Childcare Consultants provide practical assistance, information and referrals to members around a wide range of dependent care issues such as selecting a day care center, locating before/after school programs, sick child care, and evaluating nursing homes and assisted living facilities. Referrals are provided to members within 12 business hours for standard cases and within six business hours for urgent cases, representing the industry’s fastest turnaround times.
Childcare Referral Services

SC CCR&R referral specialists are available at (888) 335-1002 to give you personalized child care information and regionally-based provider lists. You also have the option of submitting a request for help finding child care through our web form. Fill out as much information about your needs as you can and click submit. However, if you would prefer to perform a search for child care on your own, you can do so via scchildcare.org

To search specifically for publicly funded pre-k options for which you might be qualified, you can go to palmettoprek.org. The Palmetto Pre-K portal is an easy way to check if your 3 or 4-year-old is eligible to receive free or low-cost preschool programs simply by answering a few quick questions. 

Childcare Rating Website This website provides the ability to both search for childcare facilities by child's age, type of facility (home based, child care center, etc.) and location and, in some cases, parental reviews.
National Association for the Education of Young Children The National Academy of Early Childhood Programs (NAEYC) administers a national, voluntary, professionally sponsored accreditation system to help raise the quality of all types of preschools, kindergartens, child care centers, and school-age child care programs. This website lists all the early childhood programs currently accredited by NAEYC. The College of Charleston Early Childhood Development Center is NAEYC accredited. 
State Daycare Licensing Standards This important resource on daycare licensing for each state includes standards, regulations and agency contact information.

COVID-19 and Working from Home as a Caregiver

Employees impacted by COVID-19
 
The College recognizes the clear need to be mindful of those among us who may be at a higher risk for severe symptoms or otherwise being severely impacted by COVID-19. It is in this spirit that, we have developed a COVID-19 Special Request for Accommodation process. You may find more information about the COVID-19 Employee Special Request for Accommodation Process at employee-information/accommodation

Leave Options 

If you need more information about leave options (emergency paid sick leave, expanded Family & Medical Leave Act (FMLA), FMLA, sick leave, annual leave, etc.), please refer to the Families First Coronavirus Response Act (FFCRA) leave guidance for more options and to apply for leave under the FFCRA at families-first-coronavirus-response-act-employee-guidance or contact Human Resources at 843.953.5512.

For more information about the FFCRA, visit www.dol.gov/sites/dolgov/FFCRA.

Additional information and the most up to date details are at https://cofc.edu/back-on-the-bricks/employee-information/index.php

Helpful Links


Talking to your Children about Race and Inclusion in Charleston, SC

SAC believes it is important for families in our CofC community feel included and help promote inclusivity and anti-racism in our Cougar network. Below are a few resources for parents.


Surrounding Area

Local School Information

The South Carolina Department of Education's Report Card Performance Report provided detailed information by county and by individual school. The reports include attendance and dropout rates, test results over the past five years, demographic data, and future plans for graduating seniors.

GreatSchools is a national, independent nonprofit organization and website that provides comprehensive profiles for both public and private schools. Parent-friendly features include teacher stats, parent reviews, student body profiles, standarized test scores, as well as search and compare tools.

Public Schools in the Area

Preschool/Head Start Programs

Head Start is a comprehensive school readiness program serving kids 0 to 5 that has a strong focus on ensuring that they start school ready to learn. They offer many other services to these children to help them and to support their families. Families may enroll their children in Head Start programs based on their income and a number of other factors. There are Head Start programs available in every county.

Special Needs Children

Family Connection of South Carolina is a statewide nonprofit organization that links families of children with special healthcare needs and disabilities with resources, support and education. We provide support to parents with a child or family member with any special healthcare need, such as an upcoming surgery, developmental delays, premature birth, physical limitations and all diagnoses including autism, asthma, ADHD and cerebral palsy.

Other Childcare Options

Other Childcare Options (site not affiliated with the College)

CofC Yammer Childcare Groups: Please visit the College of Charleston's Yammer page and search for current groups that are discussing childcare and babysitting options for CofC employees. 


Breastfeeding Mothers

Lactation Policy: We are a family-friendly work and study environment and acknowledges the significant health benefits of breastfeeding for mothers and their infants. The purpose of this policy is to provide nursing mothers who are College employees with a private place and reasonable break time to express breast milk for her nursing child. Nursing employees should provide reasonable notice to their supervisor of the intent to take lactation breaks. Supervisors are encouraged to provide as much schedule flexibility and break time as reasonably possible to accommodate the employee’s needs. Any employee who is breastfeeding her child will be provided reasonable break times to express milk for her newborn up to one year after the child’s birth.

Lactation/Nursing Rooms: The nursing mothers' rooms are available for mothers who need to breastfeed or pump milk in privacy. Each is accessed via a coded keypad. Those who need the room numbers and corresponding codes should contact Human Resources. Certain rooms have online reservation calendars including: http://libcal.library.cofc.edu/booking/mother

Breastpump CoverageThe State Health Plan covers certain types of breast pumps for new moms. Learn how to get a breast pump at no cost to you! Contact HR for additional information.


You’ve got questions? We’ve got answers! Email sac@cofc.edu anytime or submit an anonymous Cougar Cares: Staff Input form.