Can an employer prohibit me from attending night school because I have to stand on mandatory call once a month?

My current job requires me to be on-call once every month. I would like to attend school at night to further my education but with this schedule it’s nearly impossible. Does an employer have to give me some flexibility to attend school. Could they terminate me because this is a part of the job?

Asked on October 24, 2011 under Employment Labor Law, Texas

Answers:

M.D., Member, California and New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 9 years ago | Contributor

In an at will employment relationship, an employer can set the terms of employment much as it see fit. This includes hiring/firing, salary/hours increase/decrease, promotions/demotions, etc. An employee in turn can choose to work for the employer or not. Whether or not to give specific time off is up to the employer's discretion. Additionally, in most work relationships, an employer can outright discharge an employee and without notice.

So unless there is a controlling employment/union agreement, or existing company policy to the contrary, or this treatment is the result of some form of actionable discrimination, your employer can in fact prohibit you from attending night school; it is perfectly legal.


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