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Frequently Asked Questions Employment

Student Schedules

  • Yes. Although the Federal Employees Part-Time Career Employment Act of 1978 defines part-time as from 16 to 32 hours a week, 5 CFR § 340.202(b) permits agencies to allow employees in tenure group 1 or 2 to perform regularly scheduled work of from 1 to 15 hours per week. Students in the Student Career Experience Program are in tenure group 2. The Act does not cover employees in tenure group 3 so students in the Student Temporary Employment Program (tenure group 3) may work any number of hours acceptable to all parties.
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  • In establishing the Student Educational Employment Program, OPM intended, generally that students always be either attending classes, working at the agency, or both. However, agencies may use their discretion to permit a break in program during which time a student is neither attending classes nor working. The student would be placed on leave without pay (LWOP) during this time.
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  • An intermittent schedule is appropriate only when the nature of the work is so sporadic and unpredictable that a regularly scheduled tour of duty cannot be scheduled in advance. In establishing the Student Educational Employment Program, OPM did not intend to have STEP or SCEP students working on intermittent schedules. Students may work full- or part-time schedules, however, as best meets their needs and the needs of the agency
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  • Yes. The student, school and agency need to work together to accommodate the academic needs of the student and the work related needs of the agency. For students participating in the Student Career Experience Program there must be a written agreement (5 CFR § 213.3202(b)(12)) and a formally arranged schedule of school and work
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  • No. It is at the discretion of the agency. Agencies should ensure that the student is making reasonable progress towards the attainment of the degree/diploma, etc., and that the needs of the manager are also considered.
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