Returning to On-Campus Operations May 14, 2021
Dear UK Employees,
Yesterday, the CDC advised that people who are now vaccinated no longer need to wear masks in most settings. It was, I am sure, a welcome announcement across our campus and our country – one more sign that we are beginning to emerge from more than a year of such trial and challenge.
At the same time, the announcement also underscores – in positive ways – how fluid and dynamic the situation is as we end one academic year and begin thinking about plans for the summer and the fall.
Things are changing quickly and often by the hour. It’s in that context of seemingly constant change that we are debuting this morning some of our initial thoughts and guidance around the return to campus for many of our employees this summer.
I’m pleased to announce additional steps – and some details – regarding our plan to return to normal operations, beginning with our policies for employees transitioning from remote or hybrid work, back to our physical spaces on campus.
Of course, we will make this transition while holding firm to our most important priority: the health and safety of our community.
As always, we will let science and data drive everything we do. For example, given yesterday’s announcement, we will in the coming days continue to evaluate our policies with respect to things like masks indoors and in other settings. We will communicate widely with the campus as we make adjustments in policy and practice.
The bottom line is that yesterday’s announcements, and other recent developments, give us even more confidence about ensuring a safe and healthy environment for our employees as they return to physical spaces.
Nevertheless, there remains a great deal of work to do and some important transitions to make. So, we will use July as a month to help staff transition back to on-site work.
Here are more details:
- In partnership with department and unit managers, staff should begin transitioning to on-site work July 1, with a few exceptions for areas with work needs that require staff to return sooner.
- The expectation is that all staff will fully transition to their FY22 schedule (fully on-site, fully remote or hybrid) by the week of August 2.
- However, we know that some departments and/or units may initiate plans specific to their areas to better serve the community. We will continue to explore flexible work options throughout the next year as we create a long-term plan for our post-pandemic workforce.
- You can learn more about our plans for returning to on-site operations and access resources here.
- Employees have the opportunity to provide feedback on our plans. The feedback form will close Monday, May 24, at 5 p.m.
As we continue to follow CDC health and safety guidelines, as well as recommendations from UK’s START team, we look forward to our employees’ safe return to campus this summer. You are critical to our process in returning to a more vibrant and residential campus.
We recognize that this coming academic year, too, will be a year of transition. We are here to support you. For questions related to our plan to return to on-campus operations, please email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Thank you for all that you do.