Faculty and Staff Resources
Frequently Asked Questions
- How will employees know when they need to return to on-campus work?
College/Division leadership will create return to workplace plans to include accounting for the number of personnel in the department, physical work setting to allow for proper social distancing, work activities needing to be prioritized, and level of service needed to provide to constituents as campus begins to open as part of the reopening plan.
- What if I am in a high-risk group for COVID-19 or care for a household family member
who is at high-risk?
Employees are not required to disclose if they are in a high-risk category based upon preexisting medical condition. If an employee considers themselves to be high-risk for COVID-19 based on the CDC guidelines and has concerns regarding returning to on-campus work, the employee may discuss this with their manager or may request an accommodation from the Office of Equal Opportunity by contacting email@example.com or by phone 405-744-9153. If an employee voluntarily discloses, this information will be kept confidential in accordance with OSU personnel policies.
Supervisors, in coordination with HR, will work with employees who are requesting accommodations to care for themselves or a family member with high-risk conditions to discuss options that support a healthy and safe work environment while determining ways to handle their position responsibilities. Some employees may be permitted to continue with temporary telework arrangements through extended phases of return to campus with periodic reviews of return to campus dates for individual positions.
- Will employees still be required to self-quarantine if there has been a potential
exposure to COVID-19?
Employees should notify and work with their supervisors if they believe they have been exposed to someone who has tested positive or is experiencing symptoms of COVID-19. Should any employee start to experience symptoms of fever and/or upper respiratory illness, they should notify their supervisor, seek medical treatment and stay home in a non-work status in order to support full recovery. Faculty and staff who have potential exposure to COVID-19 but are not experiencing symptoms should follow CDC guidelines and self-quarantine for 14 days. During the period of self-quarantine, employees may continue to telework unless they are otherwise on leave.
OSU's goal is to return workers to work in the safest manner possible while acknowledging possible limitations that may impact the ability to perform the essential functions of the job thus requiring modifications. While a return to work typically requires the assessment and documentation by the employee's health care provider, this may not be reasonably possible due to COVID-19. Therefore, employees and supervisors should follow CDC guidelines to determine the appropriate time to return to work, while OSU asks returning employees to be symptom free and fever-free for at least 24 hours without fever-reducing medication before returning to work.
- What if I am not comfortable coming to work due to possible exposure and I’ve been
requested to start reporting to on-campus work?
Employees should bring their concerns to their supervisor and discuss options available to support the work needing to be done while supporting health and safety of our employees. HR can also provide support in facilitating conversations with supervisors and employees to determine needs and accommodations available to meet those needs. Possible accommodations may range from continuing telework arrangements to office restructuring, possible schedule rotations, to approving temporary use of appropriate accrued leave. Any request for accommodation for a disability should comply with the Americans with Disability Act in coordination with the Office of Equal Opportunity.
- What if I have childcare issues that prevent me from reporting to on-campus work when
Employees should discuss with their supervisor regarding availability to report for on-campus work. It is encouraged that employees who are asked to return to support on-campus operations talk with their childcare provider to look at options that may be available, including documentation to support your return to campus need. When no childcare options are available then, supervisors are encouraged to provide accommodations through continued telework when work is available, create opportunities to support rotating schedules, or extended hours of work where possible.
It is important that employees do not bring their children or other family members to the workplace to respect the health and safety of co-workers. This approach is critical to being able to maintain social distancing at all times. Departments are setting limitations based on the number of employees required to be on-campus so employee guests are not allowed at this time.
- I was approved to work remotely for fall 2020. What about spring 2021?
If you had a request to work remotely during fall 2020 approved by the Office of Equal Opportunity (OEO) and your situation has not changed, the fall 2020 accommodation will roll over to the spring 2021 semester and no updated physician’s letter will be required. Should you need additional or modified accommodations including cancellation, those needs will be addressed by OEO. If you have received a modification to work approved through your department and not OEO, you should discuss the need for spring accommodations with your departmental supervisor or administrator.
- I need to make a new request to work remotely in the spring. What do I do?
All new requests for the spring 2021 semester should be sent to the Office of Equal Opportunity at firstname.lastname@example.org. Please refer to the guidelines for faculty and staff accommodation requests located at https://hr.okstate.edu/consulting-services/hr-covid-resources.html.
- What should an employee do if they suspect a co-worker of being high-risk and reporting
to on-campus work?
Employees are entitled to protections against discrimination based upon age, disability, and a number of other protected categories. Others should not presume to determine if someone is in a high-risk category. Each individual should assess oneself with the CDC guidance and/or their health care provider to determine if they believe it is safe to come to work. If a co-worker learns of a high-risk factor, they must maintain confidentiality of that information, only reporting it with HR or a supervisor, or sharing it with permission of the individual with the risk factor.
- Can I open a position for recruitment?
At this time, staff recruitment is limited to fill mission-critical needs of the university. If there is an urgent need to open a position for recruitment, please provide enough detail to help us understand the circumstances.
The following are suggestions for the information to include in the request:
- Is the position mission critical or essential to University operations?
- When will the position be filled?
- Is there an urgent need to fill the position quickly?
- What is the plan to appropriately onboard a new hire?
- Are arrangements for working remotely necessary?
If you have questions, contact OSU Human Resources by email email@example.com or call (405) 744-2909.
- Is the position mission critical or essential to University operations?
- I am ready to extend an offer of employment but the start date is subject to when
the University is open to the public. Do you have any recommendations?
We strongly encourage hiring managers to identify a date the employee could start employment and add a statement to allow for flexibility in these uncertain times.
“Due to COVID-19, this offer of employment, the start date and/or working hours are subject to change.”
“With the global pandemic, this assistantship is contingent of the availability of funds and the University’s restoration of [on-campus?] operations.”
Please keep in mind the Coronavirus pandemic has caused a lot of disruption to the University. There is a need to adjust to how work is done and processes are carried out. Consider if the hire will fill an immediate need and provide an essential service. You may want a backup plan if the start date is not met or the reasons for the contingency change.
Our best recommendation is to wait to extend the offer until the University is able to regain certainty. The new Families First Coronavirus Response Act provides up to two weeks of paid time off for COVID-19 related reasons. After 30-days of employment, the new hire may be eligible for up to an additional 10 weeks of partially paid leave based on eligibly criteria.
Please contact Joey Keel, Talent Acquisition Manager, or your HR Consultant if you have any questions. Email firstname.lastname@example.org or call (405) 744-2909 for information.
- I have a new employee who was going to start next week but they contacted me to say
they have COVID-19 or associated symptoms. What do I do?
Please contact Joey Keel, Talent Acquisition Manager, or your HR Consultant to discuss the specific situation. Guidance is subject to change based on current CDC guidance, state or federal mandates to ensure workplace safety. Email email@example.com or call (405) 744-2909 for information.
- Responding to COVID-19 Infection Report on the Stillwater campus
- If you become ill while on campus, quickly isolate yourself from others. If you have fever, cough, loss of smell or taste, or other symptoms out of the ordinary for you, you might have COVID-19. Please contact a healthcare provider to determine if you should get tested for COVID-19. You can call your primary care provider, Payne County Health Department, or UHS at 405-744-7665.
- If you need to get tested for COVID-19, call University Health Services at 405-744-7665 or schedule an appointment through their online portal. Payne County Health Department is also available for testing, as is your primary care physician.
- Remain isolated from others until you get further instructions from a healthcare provider. This includes staying home from class, work, activities, or even grocery or convenience stores.
Within 24-48 Hours
- Notify your professors, supervisors or activity sponsors of your need to isolate because you are sick.
- If living on campus, work with UHS and OSU Housing to determine if you should remain in your current room. If you live off campus, continue to isolate yourself at your home, utilizing a private room and bathroom if possible.
Within 48-72 Hours
- You should get notification from UHS on your results. If results are negative, you should remain home until you are no longer sick and you are fever free for 24 hours. If you are positive, call Payne County Health Department at 405-372-8200 for further instructions on the mandatory quarantine, as required by the state of Oklahoma.
Within 5-7 days
- You will be contacted by the state health department to discuss your symptoms. They will release you for public contact somewhere between 10 to 14 days if you are exhibiting NO symptoms.
- You will be contacted to provide a list of your possible contacts so that they may take precautions as well. Please provide as many details as you can at this time. In accordance with CDC contact tracing guidelines this would include any individual within six feet of you for at least 15 minutes.
- Continue to answer daily calls from the state health department in order to comply with state regulations and ensure your health and safety.
Daily Life Resources
Online Teaching Resources
OSU’s Institute for Teaching and Learning Excellence has helpful tutorials for faculty teaching online courses.
Human Resources Guidance
The Supervisor Toolkit offers information for hiring supervisors and details about OSU’s temporary telecommuting guidelines.
Information Technology Support
If your supervisor recommends telecommuting, review these tools and settings when working from home.
Classroom and Public Health Guidance
These guidelines are designed to help instructors maintain a safe classroom environment while incorporating COVID-19 requirements for campus.