July 8, 2020
Hello, Reed staff and faculty who supervise staff.
We are writing to provide initial guidance about how we will transition back to working on campus. To prepare for this, department directors and associate deans are asked to begin writing return to campus (RTC) plans and work schedules for their groups. Our goal is to transition back to working on campus in a safe, orderly, and equitable manner.
Department plans are to incorporate the following guidelines:
- Department directors/associate deans are encouraged to work collaboratively with their teams to establish their RTC plans and work schedules.
- Starting on August 3, department directors/associate deans should begin to transition staff back to working on campus, to prepare for fall semester.
- Department directors/associate deans are asked to publish their RTC plans and work schedules to their group as soon as possible, but no later than July 31, so everyone can familiarize themselves with the full plan for their department. Work schedules should be provided at least two weeks in advance, although changes in schedule are not prohibited and should be expected occasionally.
- The goal is to configure our offices and practices so that every staff member can safely fulfill their professional responsibilities. For many staff, especially those supporting students, this will include a regular presence on campus. Note that if you have a medical condition that could prohibit you from working on campus, you may continue to utilize the accommodation request process.
- Six feet of physical distance is required at all times on campus, indoors or outdoors. In departments where proximity to others is part of the work, a protocol for maintaining six feet of distance is required to be part of the plan. Our goal for shared office spaces is that occupancy should not exceed 50% of normal levels.
- After departments complete their RTC transition, offices are expected to be open during normal business hours and staff should be available to meet with students in-person, at least by appointment.
- Staff are to wear cloth face coverings when others are present in the same work area, or when they pass through shared spaces such as hallways, bathrooms, break areas, and conference rooms (whether others are present or not).
- Staff who work in academic departments and report to faculty are asked to work with their supervisor to establish a plan and work schedule for their group.
- Department directors/associate deans should work to accommodate alternative on-campus work schedules for staff with children who are impacted by school or daycare closures.
- All staff are encouraged to take vacation time off this summer. Teams should work together to establish schedules that afford everyone the opportunity to take vacation time off.
RTC plans and work schedules will look different across departments. The nature of a department’s work and the physical spaces it occupies will naturally lead to differences in how staff return to campus. RTC plans and work schedules need to be as equitable as possible for all staff in that department.
The college will continue to provide C19 time for staff who are unable to work because they or their family member is ill with COVID-19 or COVID-like symptoms, or they have no school or childcare due to the pandemic. Those who have a COVID-related leave or accommodation and cannot work from home will also continue to use C19 time. If a staff member cannot be at work or work from home due to their departmental work plan, department directors/associate deans are strongly encouraged to reassign staff to alternate work rather than use C19 time.
In closing, we wish to acknowledge all of the thoughtful work that staff have been doing on behalf of our community and our students. Some of you have been asked to do tasks you never imagined. Others of you have been asked to work extraordinarily long hours. Yet others have been asked to be creative and develop entirely new ways of working. And we have been doing all this inside a pandemic, when some days it’s hard to even concentrate. I hope you will take a moment to reach out today to someone who you know has been doing good work and tell them how much you appreciate them.