At the option of the board, recipients attending nursing school may be granted paid educational leave during times of such attendance. Employees attending school full-time shall be assigned duties in the health department on weekdays, except state holidays, when school is not in session, or shall be charged with annual leave or sick leave, as appropriate. Employees attending school part-time shall perform duties in the health department except when scheduled for class. Educational institutions approved by the board for participation in the program shall be required, as a condition of such approval, to submit monthly attendance reports to the department for all loan recipients. Employees granted paid educational leave shall be charged for annual leave for each school day or portion thereof when not in attendance. Repeated unexcused absences shall be sufficient cause for the board to cancel the loan agreement. Employees receiving salaries while attending school shall be required to repay as principal the total amount loaned for tuition, books, and other expenses, plus the total amount of their salaries paid while in attendance at school, in the event repayment is required under the provisions of Section 22-4B-4.