FAQs about Returning to the Workplace Summer 2020

Updated: June 3, 2020

Jump To:


When can employees begin returning to work?

The University will begin bringing employees back to the workplace on June 11, 2020 at the direction of their supervisor. Department directors will develop an operational return to work plan for their department with the goal of returning most employees to campus by August 10, 2020. All staffing plans must be pre-approved by the Executive Director of Human Resources before employees may return.

Many employees will continue to work remotely over the summer.

Remember to stay in touch with your supervisor so you know what the plan is for your return to the workplace.

Can I continue to work remotely if my young children do not have summer daycare or summer camps?

Yes, you will not return to campus until local schools have started.

Can I continue working remotely after students return?

Your department director will discuss with you the option to remain working remotely. Decisions will be made based on the needs of the department and the ability to meet student needs.

Can an employee choose not to return to work when requested to do so?

Employees are required to report back to work on campus at the request of their supervisor. If you choose not to return to work, and have no COVID-19 underlying reason not to return, you will be considered to have resigned your position at the University.


What do I do if I am in a high-risk category for severe illness due to COVID-19 and my doctor does not feel I should return to work?

Contact Mary Main in Human Resources to complete a Medical Certification and Request for Modified Work Arrangement form. Upon completion of this form by your doctor, and if you are able to work remotely, you will continue to do so. If you do not have remote work, you may be approved for unpaid Family and Medical Leave (FMLA) if your circumstances qualify for FMLA and if you have FMLA available, in which case accrued CTO/SLR may be used.

What if I have an immediate family member with an underlying medical condition that makes them more susceptible to serious illness from COVID-19? Will I be required to return to work on campus?

Where possible, the University encourages employees to work with their supervisor to enable working from home. For work that cannot be performed from home, the University has implemented protocols and policies to reduce the risk of transmission on campus. Employees with family members at high risk should be hyper-vigilant, practice rigorous hygiene, and take every precaution to protect at-risk family members at home.

If you are unable to work remotely and choose not to come to work due to an immediate family member with an underlying medical condition, you may use your CTO.


What if an employee is not asked to return to work before August 10, 2020, and is not able to work remotely?

Employees should continue to record their time under the Not Required to Work pay code until instructed otherwise.

What if I can only work partial hours remotely?

Continue to record the hours you are working and use the Not Required to Work pay code for the regularly scheduled daily hours you do not work. Continue this practice until instructed otherwise.

As an academic year non-exempt employee, will I continue to receive pay?

No. This is consistent with the practice in past years.

Can I be reassigned to other work this summer?

Yes, in some situations we will be calling in employees who do not have work that can be performed remotely. You may be reassigned to temporarily work in another department.

When does COVID-19 essential pay premium end?

The last day to be paid essential pay premium is June 10, 2020.


What is being done to prepare the facilities for the return of employees?

Please refer to the Guide for Returning to the Workplace on the Human Resources website for information about preparations.

Will I be provided with personal protective equipment (PPE), including a mask, wipes, etc. to keep my workplace safe?

Hugh Latimer in University Facilities will review with Department Directors any specific department needs for re-arranging workspaces and any additional safety requirements (e.g., face shields, Plexi-glass dividers, cleaning protocols, etc.). The University will be providing all PPE to designated employees.

All other employees will be expected to provide their own face mask. Face coverings will be required while on campus except in private offices or workspaces where there is only one person. Please review the CDC face coverings basics online.


What should I do if I am sick?

If you are not feeling well, please DO NOT come to work, especially if you are experiencing COVID- 19 symptoms, which include: cough, shortness of breath or difficulty breathing, fever, chills, muscle pain, sore throat, or a new loss of taste or smell.

You should contact your supervisor as soon as possible if you suspect COVID-19 sustained exposure or symptoms. Supervisors must report your illness to Human Resources. You may use SLR/CTO during the time you are ill. Employees who have been ill with COVID-19 will be required to provide a medical release from their doctor to assure a safe return to work.

If sick with something other than the COVID-19 virus, you must contact your supervisor in keeping with the normal attendance policy. SLR/CTO must be used, whether working at home or on campus.

What should I do if I am exposed to a person who is confirmed or presumptive positive for COVID- 19?

Employees who are exposed to a person with COVID-19 should stay home and call their supervisor. In general, close contact involves living in the same household as a sick person, caring for a sick person, or being within six feet of a sick person for a prolonged period of ten to thirty minutes or more.

Supervisors must notify Mary Main in Human Resources of known or suspected exposures to COVID-19. Employees will be asked to provide a note from their doctor indicating the recommended period of self-isolation, which is generally up to fourteen days. Employees will be required to use SLR/CTO during this period.

I am traveling this summer for a vacation. When I return to Lexington, will I be required to self-isolate for fourteen days?

You will be required to self-isolate for fourteen days if you have traveled internationally. For domestic travel, you will be asked to self-monitor for COVID-19 symptoms, but you may report to work on campus.