Winter quarter instruction - instructor exception process for the return to in-person instruction; other information

Dear colleagues,

We continue to work toward a resumption of in-person instruction on January 31 for those courses scheduled to be in-person. We appreciate your flexibility in the first four weeks, as the pandemic unfolds in real time. We continue to monitor our positivity rate, status of quarantine and isolation housing, our campus infrastructure of housing, dining, custodial, and transportation, and other relevant indicators. We will take additional actions or make adjustments to our protocols as needed to best serve the wellbeing of our campus and broader community and appreciate your collaboration in these efforts.

We understand that some instructors may seek to continue to teach remotely due to COVID-related circumstances that make in-person instruction infeasible. During our planning for winter quarter instruction, we had not anticipated that the first four weeks would be taught remotely. We write here to provide an expanded exception program to which instructors may apply now to continue teaching remotely this winter quarter after the general return to in-person instruction on January 31. Courses that were originally scheduled as remote or online will continue in that modality throughout the quarter.

We are providing this exception program as a temporary, short-term workplace adjustment, for the remaining weeks of winter 2022 quarter only , due to the surge of the highly infectious Omicron variant of COVID19. An instructor or teaching assistant (TA) may request to continue remote instruction exclusively for the remainder of winter 2022 for the following reasons:

  1. Instructor/TA with increased susceptibility to or risk of COVID-19;
  2. Family member or household member with a medical condition that significantly increases risk of or susceptibility to COVID-19;
  3. Family member or household member who is ineligible or otherwise not qualified to be vaccinated.

Requests will not be considered based on: i) general caregiving responsibilities (unless the dependent qualifies for #2 or #3 above); ii) the instructor’s or TA’s unvaccinated status due to an exemption from the UC systemwide mandate, unless the requester qualifies under reason #1 above; iii) the instructor or TA not living locally.

For requests for a winter 2022 continuation of remote instruction, please contact the chair of your course sponsoring agency by Monday, January 24, 2022 with your request and a brief explanation of the reason(s) for the request (specific medical conditions do not need to be disclosed) and a brief description of how student learning outcomes will be achieved under a remote format. For most courses, this could simply be a statement of teaching by zoom or creating a flipped class, while a lab or studio course would require more explanation. Your chair will forward this request to the overseeing dean, who has decision authority.

Depending on the initial volume of requests, I anticipate that decisions will be communicated to the instructor and course sponsoring agency chair in writing by Friday, January 28, 2022 unless a need for additional time has been communicated to the instructor or TA.

I want to use this opportunity to remind us of our campus vaccine clinic plans. Being fully vaccinated, including a booster, is the best way to avoid severe illness as the highly infectious Omicron variant continues to spread. Student Health Services will be administering Moderna boosters January 19–21 from 8:30 a.m.–4:15 p.m. by appointment only at Stevenson Event Center. The booster is available to all currently enrolled students and employees for free. More vaccine clinic dates will be announced in the days ahead, and more information about clinics and booster eligibility is available via the Student Health Center (here).

The Faculty & Staff Wellness Program in the Office of Risk Services is partnering with Kaiser to provide a COVID-19 Booster Shot Clinic for faculty, staff, and students on Sunday, January 23, at the Stevenson Event Center from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Both Pfizer and Moderna boosters are available. For more information regarding the booster clinic and to sign up for your booster, click here. We continue to deeply appreciate your patience and resilience to the challenges presented by the pandemic. With the additional support and flexibility provided by the process described above, I look forward to the scheduled resumption of in-person instruction in winter quarter.


Lori Kletzer 
Campus Provost and Executive Vice Chancellor