Department of Labor & Workforce Development

Work and Back to School Amid COVID-19

a Black mother and child working on virtual distance learning at home

Paid leave, unemployment, and job protection for parents/guardians

As schools reopen, many parents and guardians have questions about how to manage work or unemployment benefits when their children must learn remotely. Below, we explain the different benefits and protections that may be available as remote learning begins, depending on whether or not you’re working, receiving unemployment benefits, or recalled to work by your employer.

The information provided on this website does not, and is not intended to, constitute legal advice; instead, all information, content, and materials available on this site are for general informational purposes only.  Information on this website may not constitute the most up-to-date legal or other information. 

Keep in mind:

  • These types of leave and other benefits are available when schools mandate remote learning, or a school or place of care is closed due to COVID-19.
  • These types of leave and other benefits apply to a primary caregiver who must provide such ongoing and constant attention to the student(s) that working from home is not possible, and only if no other suitable person is available to provide such care.
  • If schools are following a hybrid model of both in-person and remote learning, parents may be eligible for paid leave or other benefits on the days that learning is remote.
  • Eligibility determinations for each state benefit or protection are made on an individual basis in accordance with the law.

Click here for information on other work benefits and protections and here for information on returning to work amid COVID-19, unemployment and health/safety concerns.

Still not sure which benefits and protections apply to your situation? Our eligibility tool can help.