With school starting online in a few weeks, parents are trying to figure out what options they have to set up their children for success. We are so fortunate to have Attorney Lisa Pierson Weinberger as our consultant for all things Covid-19. Here she helps us navigate some of the most frequently asked questions that we are getting from parents right now about private educators and learning pods.
1. Are you creating COVID waivers for families and private educators?
If a family employs a private educator, that person is their employee. As a matter of public policy, employers cannot ask employees to waive their right to a safe work environment. For this reason, employment waivers are not enforceable. However, I do recommend that families create a COVID-related protocol with their domestic employees (including private educators) that is included in an employment agreement.
2. Are you open to working with families who are creating pods of 4-5 kids?
Yes. The largest pods that I’ve worked with to date have included four children.
3. HomePay advised these pods are okay to do as long as everyone makes the educator a W2 employee of the household. People would like to know how to correctly set up the pods for employment purposes.
I agree with HomePay that private educators will almost certainly be properly classified as employees (and not independent contractors). Employers must also ensure that they are complying with all federal, state, and local employment-related laws, which is why having a robust employment agreement is essential.
4. Anything else you would like to add?
It can be tempting to take advice from friends and google, but every situation is different, and it’s really important for families to get advice from a professional about their particular circumstances. This is not a plug for my services but is really just a reminder that, even though things feel heightened right now and everyone wants to have this problem solved (to the extent possible), the right approach (or document) for one family does not always translate to what is best for someone else. As a working mom, I completely understand how stressful this is, and don’t want anyone’s stress to be multiplied by rushing into a situation without thinking through all of the proper considerations.
Are you ready to hire a private educator to support your family? We are happy to answer any of your questions and hold your hand through this process. We know it can be overwhelming, but we also know YOU CAN DO THIS! Please visit Hire a Private Educator or call 310-857-4985 to learn more.