Faculty/Staff Information

What information is available to help me in transitioning my class to an online format?

Instructional Design Services has developed a website and a brochure packed with helpful information, guides, links to help, and online assistance.
To visit the website, go to www.athens.edu/keepteaching. To download a copy of the brochure, please click here.

Frequently Asked Questions

Is the campus closed for faculty and staff?
No, staff members are now back on campus and working at full capacity while following safety protocols that have been put into place. Faculty members will continue working remotely as long as classes remain in an online format.
What is the University doing to respond proactively to the COVID-19 pandemic in terms of business continuity?
Rest assured that the business of the University continues. Of course, health and safety is our primary concern. We want you, our employees, and your families, to come through this health crisis unscathed. We genuinely care about you. We recognize that the well-being of all of us depends on a thriving university. We have adopted a number of strategies to help mitigate some of the threats. Some were already in place and were being pursued vigorously even before COVID-19.

Here are a few examples:

  • Lobbying at the federal level to increase allocations to higher education through the CARES Act. Lobbying at the state level regarding our state appropriation and possible bond funding.
  • Aggressive marketing with a twist of the message to fit our new situation.
  • Progress on rebranding and website redesign.
  • Advertising of short-term educational opportunities to fit the laid-off person.
  • Intense calling and zooming campaigns to prospective and continuing students.
  • Increases in cost-effectiveness by creating efficiencies in procedures and processes, and by finding ways to reduce costs without negatively affecting quality.
  • Reviewing current open faculty and staff positions to ensure investments in new personnel are made in a strategic manner.
  • Evaluating all capital projects that are in the current budget and making sound fiscal decisions based on the greatest need.
  • Evaluating purchasing decisions that best demonstrate efficiencies and University priorities.

 We are deeply grateful to those who have agreed to modify their job duties in order to help us with different tasks made crucial by the pandemic.

How will enrollment be impacted by the COVID-19 situation?
Due to aggressive recruiting and marketing, our summer enrollment numbers were 8.8% above last year in credit hours. This is tremendous news and couldn’t have been achieved without your hard work. Our schedule of recruiting visits to community colleges and high schools was cut short by the closure of those institutions, but we have bounced back from that disappointment, making many, many, calls to leads and current students to first check on them as individuals, and secondarily to see whether they would like to enroll. We continue to work in unison with community colleges, establishing pathway agreements and obtaining lists of students close to graduation.

See the business continuity FAQ response for some examples of our marketing efforts.

Will reductions in the workforce be required as a result of the coronavirus pandemic?
There have been no discussions to-date regarding any reductions in faculty or staff. The University is financially stable and is operating soundly. We continue to invest resources in long-term strategies and projects that will benefit students, faculty, staff, and the campus as a whole.  We are optimistic about our future.


If I am home with my child because his or her school or place of care is closed or child care provider is unavailable, do I get paid sick leave, expanded family and medical leave?
You may be eligible for both types of leave, but only for a total of twelve weeks of paid leave. Please contact HR with questions concerning your individual circumstances or situation for further clarification.
If a family member keeps my under-school-age child but can no longer keep them due to COVID-19 concerns or reasons, do I qualify for FFCRA/Emergency Paid Leave?
Yes, please contact HR with your specific circumstances.
If I am able to telework, do I need to take leave under the FFCRA?
No, you will not need to take leave since you are able to work.
Is all leave under the FMLA now paid leave?
No. The only type of family and medical leave that is paid leave is expanded family and medical leave under the Emergency Family and Medical Leave Expansion Act when such leave exceeds ten days. This includes only leave taken because the employee must care for a child whose school or place of care is closed or child care provider is unavailable, due to COVID-19 related reasons.
Families First Coronavirus Response Act
A new federal law, the Families First Coronavirus Response Act, was signed into law on March 18, 2020.  The law will provide leave to employees who miss work for certain coronavirus-related reasons.  On March 24, 2020, the Department of Labor’s Wage and Hour Division(WHD) announced its first round of guidance for employers and employees on paid sick leave and paid family and medical leave provisions within the Families First Coronavirus Response Act (FFCRA).  The WHD’s guidance includes the attached poster and a Fact Sheet for Employees.

We know that there will be many questions that you will have about how the act will affect you.  As we wait on guidance and interpretation from the Department of Labor, please read the attached documents and be assured that we will pass on information and guidance as we receive it.  Feel free to send any questions that you have to .

What resources are available from Human Resources?
For information on resources from Human Resources visit the COVID-19 Resources for Employees site.