Dear members of our University,
Last week we informed you that there would be changes to the regulations and measures for the University related with the coronavirus pandemic. Based on the new decrees by the State Government, which aim to continue to reduce the transmission rate of the coronavirus, the crisis management team and the University Board have coordinated with the Deans to specify provisions for university operations as from this coming Monday, April 27, 2020. We would like to provide partial information about these below: Detailed information can be found on the University's newly structured corona website.
In advance, please note that there will continue to be considerable restrictions for all university operations. We need to prepare ourselves for this over the next few months. But some measures will gradually be eased - always under the presumption that the infection rates remain stable and there are no setbacks in this regard. Every one of us - privately and professionally - are required to protect ourselves and others by our own actions and thereby contribute towards the fact that the measures can actually continue to be eased cautiously.
There are currently no changes to teaching and examinations in the current summer semester. At the moment, current schedules are coordinated for the summer semester and the examinations as well as for the winter semester.
Digital courses and lectures that are currently taking place should be continued in this form until the end of the summer semester. All lectures and courses that require attendance, as well as parts of digital courses which also require attendance, will not take place until further notice. All University establishments and facilities are still working on finding solutions to face-to-face events in the current summer semester and for the coming semester. These are associated with strict hygiene and distancing regulations, which we are currently compiling concepts for together with the state. These include lectures, but also the hygiene and protective measures in service and research operations. We ask for your patience until these regulations have been finalised and the state permits attendance events at universities again, under certain conditions.
Examinations on site are still not taking place, except for digital and individual exams, which, however, should only be carried out in special individual cases during the lecture period. The existing regulations apply to the digital and substitute exams. Students are requested to contact their lecturers or the Dean of Studies of their faculty directly if they have any questions or problems.
A replacement period for the exams of the previous winter semester is currently being reviewed; it will probably take place during the semester break. Students and examiners will be informed by the end of May. Individual arrangements in special cases (e.g. externally regulated medical examinations) will be announced separately and at least two weeks in advance.
The University Library and the specialised departmental libraries will remain closed to the public until further notice. The University Library offers its users a range of digital offers in compensation for this, which you can find on the corona website.
Lecturers will receive restricted access to the specialised departmental libraries for the faculties, departments and institutes to prepare and conduct their digital courses. Please contact the respective institutions for further details and coordination.
Research remains generally not restricted - but it is still subject to the applicable distancing and hygiene rules. Wherever possible, please continue to conduct activities that permit this from home. As from May 4, 2020, it will be possible to gradually increase attendance on site. This particularly applies to employees who are unable to work from home. Strict rules apply to the organisation of operations on site in the institutes and working groups, which absolutely must be adhered to in everyone's health interest. Risk assessments must be compiled and kept up to date in all institutions. Please continue to use the form created by the Central Unit: Safety Engineering for this. Please make the necessary arrangements on site when organising operations to ensure that basic functions and processes can also be maintained if there is an infection within your institution and parts of the team need to be quarantined at home. The corona website also contains information from third-party funders, all together and continually updated, to make it easier for you to access information about funds, application deadlines, etc.
With the aim of reducing the transmission rate of the coronavirus and continuing to maintain control over the infection rates, employees should continue to work from home after coordination with their superiors, as long as their presence on site is not required for maintaining essential operations. The obligation to attend work is therefore restricted and working from home is prescribed.
Employees who are not able or only partially able to fulfil their duties from home should receive the option from their superiors to start work again back at the University as from April 27. This requires that this is possible under consideration of the distancing and hygiene rules. In these cases, a restricted attendance obligation exists. Special provisions apply for those in the risk groups. You can find detailed information about the regulations and restrictions for activities at work on the corona website, along with information about working from home and the amended regulations on recording working times.
Thank you very much for your patience and your efforts during this difficult time, which may well remain the norm for quite a while. You have all contributed to finding the best solutions, and have done so under conditions that are much harder than usual.
We hope you understand that some questions are still unanswered. All together we are gradually working on finding a solution that suits you. We hope that we will all continue to overcome these major challenges together.
With kind regards and the hope that you all stay well!
The University Board