Last Updated April 3
In response to COVID-19, the South Dakota Board of Regents has extended the last day to withdraw from a class with a "WD" grade from April 6 to April 14. This extension will allow faculty and students additional time to assess their progress.
Faculty can still file Instructor Initiated Drops with the Registrar's Office until April 14. Please monitor your students' engagement with your sections. If you believe the student is not engaged in the class, please consider that option.
The last day of the spring 2020 term classes is scheduled for Friday, May 1. Final exams are scheduled to begin Monday, May 4 and end Friday, May 8. Final exams that are scheduled to be offered synchronously need to use the time originally scheduled for their course. If the exam is scheduled to be offered asynchronously, then the exam should be completed by the end of the day May 8.
If you have questions or concerns, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org.
Remote Work Extension
Amid the COVID-19 pandemic, Gov. Kristi Noem has issued Executive Order 2020-06, ordering “non-essential personnel” to work remotely until Saturday, May 2. The South Dakota Board of Regents has extended application of this order to university employees through Friday, May 15.
It is important to note that the designation of “non-essential personnel” continues to change based on the needs of campus.
- All faculty members continue to be considered essential personnel. Faculty members are encouraged to work remotely if possible, but if they are unable to perform this work from home or need university resources, they are required to report to work as scheduled.
- Vice presidents from each area will designate who is required to return to campus to maintain essential operations. If your status has changed since last week, your supervisor will contact you soon. Should you continue to work from home, we ask that you continue to monitor your email and phone should the need arise for you to return to campus. If “non-essential personnel” are not capable of working remotely, they shall be granted paid administrative leave.
On-campus events and visitor activities remain canceled through May 15. The following USD facilities will remain closed to the public through May 15:
- Muenster University Center
- I.D. Weeks Library
- Wegner Health Sciences Library
- Wellness Center
- Vucurevich Children’s Center
- Native American Cultural Center
- Center for Diversity and Community
- Student Veteran Resource Center
- Charlie’s Bookstore & Fan Shop
- University Art Galleries
- USD Testing Center in Vermillion and Sioux Falls
- Community College for Sioux Falls
Students who remain on campus may access the Muenster University Center provided appropriate social distancing is accomplished.
Please remember that the purpose of Gov. Noem’s executive order is to slow the spread of COVID-19 by reducing interpersonal interaction. It is important to stay home as much as possible. As of today, South Dakota has 41 confirmed cases of COVID-19.
It is imperative to note that while COVID-19 may not necessarily cause serious harm to a person with a healthy immune system, you can be a carrier of this disease to older adults, individuals with chronic medical conditions like diabetes or heart disease, or those with compromised immune systems.
Please be assured that USD will continue to communicate with you in a proactive and transparent manner. The best way you can prepare for COVID-19 is to take everyday precautions, like avoiding close contact with people who are sick and washing your hands and phone often.
For a current count of cases in South Dakota, visit the South Dakota Department of Health website.
If you have any questions or concerns, please don’t hesitate to reach out at email@example.com.
South Dakota Board of Regents Employee Leave Guidelines for COVID-19
Please read these guidelines carefully, as they provide the policy framework for handling sick, annual and administrative leave for each regental institution.
If an employee is not exposed to COVID-19 but is concerned about their health and safety, they should contact their supervisor. Supervisors should obtain approval from their VP before implementing alternative work arrangements.
- If an employee has been exposed to COVID-19 but is not symptomatic/sick, USD will grant paid administrative leave if alternative work arrangements are not an option. This decision will be determined by the vice president of each area.
- If an employee has been exposed to COVID-19 and is symptomatic/sick, they must use sick leave, annual leave or leave without pay.
- If an employee has an immediate family member that requires care, they are eligible to use personal leave (up to 5 days of accrued sick leave), annual leave or leave without pay. Where feasible, employees may be provided alternative work arrangements.
- If employees end up on extended leave due to COVID-19 and do not have leave available, they may be eligible for advanced sick leave and should contact their supervisor.
If an individual self-identifies as part of a “vulnerable” population (in the case of COVID-19, the CDC defines vulnerable populations as “older adults, or people with serious chronic medical conditions such as heart disease, diabetes or lung disease) and is uncomfortable coming to work, that request should be accommodated and the individual given the option of using annual leave or leave without pay. Alternative work arrangements may also be considered and will be handled on a case-by-case basis.
No Campus Closure
At this time, campus buildings will remain open and business operations will continue as usual.
If USD or any of its departments/colleges/functions within the university close, USD will:
- Identify mission-critical employees and ensure there is coverage and/or accommodation to allow remote work to ensure essential operations can continue
- Provide administrative leave to eligible employees who are not required/requested/able to have alternative work arrangements.
USD is encouraging all managers and supervisors to think creatively about how to support all their employees in caring for their health – and reducing their risk of exposure to COVID-19 – while still enabling them to continue to perform the important work they do. Hourly and student workers may have different levels of job flexibility and that should be considered in your strategy and responses.
One effective strategy for minimizing the spread of COVID-19 is greater "social distancing" through alternative work arrangements. We encourage all employees to consider alternative methods or postponement/cancellation of non-essential group meetings. Social distancing can also be accomplished by using technology (Zoom or teleconferencing) to reduce the number of meetings involving large numbers of people.
USD will continue to constantly monitor and communicate any further actions to be taken should that become necessary. Thank you for your continued dedication to USD and its mission. If you have any questions or concerns, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org.
USD is committed to providing an inclusive environment for all member of our university community. Incidents of discrimination and harassment towards any individuals or groups are serious issues that will be dealt with according to BOR policy. We are all called upon to uphold the ideas of Inclusive Excellence, showing respect for and valuing all members of the USD community.