On 1 April 2013, Act No. 48/2013 Coll., came into effect. This Act amended the Act on Higher Education Institutions and the Act on State Social Support. This Act imposes upon universities the obligation to take effective measures for parents to be able to study for the period for which their maternity or parental leave would otherwise last (i.e. until the child reaches the age of three), which the Act specifies as the “recognized parenthood period”.
For women, the recognized parenthood period includes the period of maternity or parental leave and for men the period of parental leave. This concerns two areas of changes.
Changes relating to studies:
Students are entitled to interrupt their studies for the recognized parenthood period pursuant to Article 13, paragraph 1 of the CULS Study and Exam Regulations.
Pursuant to Article 6, paragraph 12 of the CULS Study and Exam Regulations, students (or students who are mothers) are entitled to have the deadline for fulfilling study obligations extended by the time period that their maternity leave would otherwise last, so long as they do not utilize interruption of studies pursuant to Article 11, paragraph 3 of the CULS Study and Exam Regulations.
What do I need to do if I want to interrupt studies or request an individual study plan due to parenting? You need to request interruption of studies (Article 11, paragraph 3, CULS Study and Exam Regulations) or request an individual study plan (Article 13, paragraph 1, CULS Study and Exam Regulations) via a written request submitted to the study department of the home faculty.
Changes relating to fees for study:
The period of study for which students who are fathers or mothers would draw (could draw) maternity or parental leave (i.e. “recognized parenthood period”) no longer counts toward the total period of study for the purposes of determining fees for a longer period of study.
For female students who have already given birth and male students, this means the period from the date of the birth of the child until the child’s third birthday. For pregnant students this means the period of eight weeks before the expected date of birth until the date of the child’s third birthday.
Records of recognized parenthood period:
I am a parent. What do I need to do in order to take advantage of the recognized parenthood period? The recognized parenthood period is recorded as the personal data of the applicant in the full scope. The recognized parenthood period only relates to individual studies of the applicant in the scope which covers the duration of the studies, including the time period when the applicant’s studies were interrupted.
How should I have the recognized parenthood period entered in the IS records? Submit a written request on registering recognized parenthood period at the study department of your faculty with your study assistant.
What do I need to submit along with the application? A copy of the birth certificate of your child, for pregnant students a copy of a her pregnancy card with the expected date of birth, or a copy of a request for financial assistance during maternity with a marked date of beginning of the maternity leave, but at the earliest eight weeks before the date of the expected birth.
I am pregnant. When can I apply for recognized parenthood period? The recognized parenthood period cannot be registered in the IS for a pregnant student earlier than eight weeks before the child’s date of birth. As soon as a student who submitted to the study department a pregnancy card for registration of recognized parenthood period gives birth, she will be obliged to submit a copy of the birth certificate of the child, at the latest 22 weeks after birth.
Obligations of the applicant:
The applicant is obliged to inform the university of all changes that affect the registration of recognized parenthood period.
If an application is filed to register the recognized parenthood period along with a copy of a pregnancy card, it will be necessary to submit a copy of the birth certificate of the child within 22 weeks from the date of the birth of the child; otherwise, the applicant will be requested by the faculty to submit it. If this obligation is not fulfilled even after being requested, the registration of the recognized parenthood period will be terminated on the date of the expiration of the deadline according to the first sentence.