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COVID-19 Updates: Stay Informed

Employee/HR Information

What if there is a confirmed case on campus?

Posted June 1, 2020

View the SDSU Protocol Communicating Presumptive/Positive COVID-19 Tests for important information regarding when an individual at SDSU experiences symptoms of COVID-19, has presumptive or a confirmed COVID-19 test, or has been exposed to presumptive or confirmed COVID-19 test.

Building Procedures

All campus buildings are locked and will remain locked moving forward. People needing exterior door card access must be listed on the Essential On Campus Daily Report, which must be submitted to the respective dean or vice president by 3 p.m. each day. The Essential On Campus Daily Report should be used to report employees (permanent and temporary) and students (graduate and undergraduate) who are deemed essential and are required to be on campus. Card Services will update exterior door access plans at 10 p.m. daily for access rights, beginning 10 p.m. current day to 9:59 p.m. the following day. Current exterior door access plans have been deactivated as this process will now be the only protocol for exterior door access moving forward.

Current Status of University Employees (Updated April 24, 2020)

April 24, 2020

Dear Colleagues,

In coordination with Governor Noem’s Executive Order 2020 - 12, the South Dakota Board of Regents will extend remote work through May 31st, and if we are unable to accommodate remote work then non-essential employees will be granted paid administrative leave. Essential employees should continue to work as scheduled and in line with the workplace guidelines provided, which may include reporting to the workplace if essential functions cannot be adequately performed remotely. As in the previous weeks, supervisors will be evaluating the work that must be completed and will communicate with you on your essential or non-essential status, and expectations on reporting to work to ensure essential functions of the institution are being met, which may change from day to day. In addition, your supervisor will communicate with you if there are additional duties that require your assistance during this period of time.

This is an evolving situation, so in the event that the landscape surrounding COVID-19 changes, the Board of Regents may adjust this plan as necessary. We will make every effort to keep you timely informed as this fluid situation continues to evolve. Updates surrounding COVID-19 can also be found on this website: https://www.sdstate.edu/covid-19. Please monitor and review this site and related communications you receive.

We understand that the spread of COVID-19 may impact you and your families whether related to work changes, school and daycare closures, or illness. Should these things happen, please discuss options for leave usage with your supervisor and Linda VanMaanen in Human Resources (605-688-4128.) 

Thank you for your flexibility as this situation continues to evolve.  

Marc Serrett
Assistant Vice President-Human Resources


Additional Information

Supervisors must:

  • Engage all of their employees and provide in writing (via email or otherwise) whether those employees are essential, will telework or will receive administrative leave.
  • (If the employee is teleworking, even part time) indicate in writing what their work expectations are, their regular check-in requirements and that these expectations are subject to revision by the supervisor. Supervisors should contact Human Resources at 605-688-4128 with questions.
  • (If department-wide telework plans are approved by the supervisor) the same check-ins and debriefings should be planned by each employee and ongoing team communication should be enabled and encouraged.

Employees directed to telework (even temporarily) must:

  • Conduct regular check-ins during telework and plan ahead for debriefing upon return to the normal work site.

SDSU’s policies are available to respond to contagious illnesses like COVID-19, such as when employees may need to use leave in accordance with SDBOR Policy 4:25 to care for family or for other authorized absences. SDSU will continue to update the campus regarding changes in operating status.

General Guidance

If an employee is ill and not feeling well, they should consider staying home from work or taking sick leave while working remotely. An ill employee should notify their supervisor via standard communication methods prior to their normal work hours and use any leave that they might be eligible to use for an illness. This will help keep others at SDSU healthy and/or allow the employee to focus on recovery. If an employee does not have a medical condition, but is concerned about exposure to COVID-19 at SDSU, one should check the SDSU COVID-19 website for updates. SDSU understands individuals may be experiencing heightened levels of anxiety during this time and encourages employees who feel anxious or worried about friends and family due to COVID-19 to contact the South Dakota Employee Assistance Plan.

Non-Emergency FMLA / Americans With Disabilities (ADA)

If an essential employee is concerned about reporting to their normal work site due to COVID-19 and has a medical condition impacting their ability to report to their normal work site or their susceptibility to COVID-19 could cause severe health risks, they should contact their supervisor to follow approved leave procedures. If extended leave for non-emergency FMLA, is needed, the employee should review SDBOR Policy 4:15 and follow the normal procedures. Self-identifying immune-compromised individuals or those who have a different medical condition that makes them susceptible to severe COVID-19 symptoms and are uncomfortable coming to their normal work site should request an accommodation, which may be accommodated in several ways. This could include activities such as telework, use of annual leave or leave without pay.

New Emergency Paid Sick Leave and Emergency Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA) Expansion Laws

SDSU will be in full compliance with the new Emergency Family and Medical Leave Expansion Act and Emergency Paid Sick Leave Act passed by Congress recently and with an effective date of April 2, 2020. Both a summary sheet and FAQs will be made available soon. All cases are handled on a case-by-case basis. Questions about ADA requests for accommodation, FMLA or sick leave may be directed to Linda VanMannen (605-688-4128).

Directing Infected Individuals to Leave Work

If SDSU has a reasonable belief that an employee has been exposed to a contagious disease that would endanger the work site, designated representatives may request, and ultimately direct, the employee to leave the work site in accordance with ARSD 55:09:04:18. For employees who may have been exposed to a contagious disease, but are not symptomatic/sick, administrative leave may be granted if telework is not an option. This requires systematic determinations and approval through Human Resources to the SDBOR director of Human Resources.

Returning from Travel, Self-Isolation and Telework

If an employee returns from a location the CDC advises self-isolation, the employee and supervisors should follow CDC travel health guidance related to voluntary self-isolation or not returning to work for the period of time advised. For employees who may have been exposed to a contagious disease, but are not symptomatic/sick, administrative leave may be granted if telework is not an option for the period of time the CDC advises for self-isolation. This requires systematic determinations and approval through Human Resources to the SDBOR director of Human Resources. 

Currently Traveling, Telework

Employees who are unable to return to the U.S. from a location due to travel restrictions or because they are unable to get their visa stamped by the U.S. Embassy in that country need to contact their supervisor to determine whether they may work in the international location. Supervisors should contact Jolane Tomhave (605-688-5948), and Marc Serrett (605-688-4128) with requests for an employee to work outside the U.S. For clearance, compliance, risk concerns and information about securely conducting work in international locations, employees should contact Dianne Nagy (605-688-5051) and the IT Help Desk at (605-688-6776). Again, if telework plans are approved, the employee should conduct regular check-ins during telework and plan ahead for debriefing upon return to the normal work site.

Going Forward - Stay Informed, Be Prepared

Given the fluidity of the situation, the most up-to-date information about SDSU’s preparations in response to COVID-19 are posted on the dedicated Emergency Management webpage. Please continue to review these pages to determine if there has been a change in operational status and check to see if this employee resources tab has been updated with additional information. Should SDSU declare an emergency and change operational status, in accordance with SDBOR Policy 4:40 and SDSU Policy 10:7, you will be notified here.

We recognize that there may be times when employees require additional support that current policies do not contemplate. If you have specific leave questions, please contact Linda VanMannen (605-688-4128). If you have questions about working remotely, or have any other employment related questions, please contact Marc Serrett (605-688-4128).