This message to all faculty and staff has been approved by Kyle Clark, Vice President for Finance and Administration.
On Friday, June 26, Human Resources sent a message to faculty and staff indicating that FSU would be reverting back to its standard telecommuting policy in August in anticipation of local schools re-opening and many employees returning to campus.
We realize that the timing of the message — as COVID-19 cases continue to rise locally and around the state — caused confusion and anxiety for many employees. That is the opposite of what we want to communicate to our dedicated faculty and staff. With so many factors still in flux — including increasing numbers of COVID cases and the possible delay of the re-opening of local schools — we recognize the need for sensitivity, flexibility, and deference to the personal and public health imperatives of this moment.
On Wednesday, July 1, Human Resources held a town hall type meeting via Zoom with over 700 University employees. We discussed new University guidelines and precautions as it pertains to COVID-19. We also discussed at length the University’s position on remote work during the pandemic. We will summarize all that was discussed in the next few days but we felt it was important to put out a clarification on remote work immediately.
We want to be clear – our policy does allow employees to work from home while caring for children. We want everyone in our community to be focused on doing their part to keep each other safe. We are requesting that employees coordinate with their supervisors on a schedule that allows them to meet their parental responsibilities in addition to work obligations. This may be different for each employee based on the specifics of their situation. Managers should work with Human Resources to develop solutions for schedules that cannot be worked out between the employee and immediate supervisor.
We regret that our initial communication caused any unnecessary worry and concern or oversimplified a very nuanced issue. We want to reassure everyone that health, safety, and the well-being of the FSU family is our top priority. Once again, we thank you for your hard work and dedication to moving the institution forward during this very challenging time.