Sick Leave Entitlement
ALTs are given 20 days of paid sick leave a year (byoukyuu), which cannot be taken in hourly units. It can only be taken daily. If you are ill you should stay home and take a sick day. If you go to school first, and later decide that you don't feel well enough to stay, you'll be required to take nenkyuu (paid annual leave) for the hours of absence. Generally in Japan, people take byoukyuu when the medical condition is serious. Japanese teachers only use sick leave under doctors' orders. Hence, if you were well enough to go to school in the first place, you wouldn't be considered ill enough to require byoukyuu. So, if you wish to take byoukyuu, you will need to take the whole day off.
According to your contract (Article 18-2), you must provide a medical certificate (shindansho) if you are absent for more than three consecutive days. Notwithstanding, Article 23 (5) leaves the requirement for a doctor's certificate at our discretion, so we may ask for a certificate even if you only miss one day. A shindansho usually costs around 3000yen.
Calling in Sick If you are sick and want to take byokyu, contact your school as soon as possible and discuss with them whether they require a doctor's note or other documentation. Please try to call your school in the morning before classes start. Alternatively, if you have your supervisor's number, you could call them.
If you're lucky, you'll be able to speak to your supervisor when calling in sick. But, just in case, here is a sample dialogue:
Staff member : Moshi moshi, (school name) no (staff name) de gozaimasu.
(Hello, ____ from _____ school speaking.)
You: Ohayo gozaimasu. (Your name) desu. (JTE)-sensei imasu ka?
(Good morning. It's _____. Is ____-sensei there?)
Staff member: Hai, chotte matte ne.
(Yes, just a moment.)
(No, they aren't.)
You: Guai wa chotte dame desu no de, kyo ichinichi yasumi masu.
(I'm not feeling well, so I'm taking the day off.)
Onaka wa chotto itai desu no de, kyo ichinichi yasumi masu.
(I have a stomach ache, so I'm taking the day off.)
Atama wa chotto itai desu no de, kyo ichinichi yasumi masu.
(I have a headache, so I'm taking the day off.)
Ashita gakko ni iku tsumori desu.
(I plan on coming to school tomorrow.)
Staff member: Hai, wakarimashita.
(Okay, I understand.)
You: Domo. Ja, ashita ne.
(Thanks. See you tomorrow.)
Staff member: O-daijini
Reporting Absence Due to Illness
If you have been absent from school due to illness, you must fill out a Report of Absence Due to Illness form and submit it to your kyoto-sensei. You can download the form here. If you've been absent for more than three days, you must attach a shindansho to your form. Your report form will be hankoed by your kyoto-sensei/kocho-sensei and then sent to Shidoka.