Dec. 22 Message to Faculty/Staff: Extending Work from Home and Other Measures

To Our Faculty and Staff:

As you prepare for a much-needed respite starting Thursday, we wanted to update your regarding plans for campus operations starting Monday, Jan. 4. First, though, we want to reiterate a point we cannot make often enough: 

We deeply appreciate all that you have done during one of the most difficult and disruptive years any of us can remember. 

Despite frequent adjustments and continuous COVID-19 concerns, you demonstrated creativity, compassion, and exceptional resilience in maintaining our missions of education and research since the pandemic’s Ohio arrival in March. While much work remains, we will engage it with the sure knowledge of this community’s extraordinary strength and dedication to one another, and our students.

Continuing Work-from-Home Practices through Friday, Jan. 8

In the wake of Ohio Gov. Mike DeWine’s initial statewide curfew, we asked all faculty and staff who could work from home to do so starting Nov. 30, and then extended the practice through this Wednesday.

Given that cases continue to climb nationally, and health experts have articulated significant concern regarding holiday gatherings, we again are extending this practice, this time through the end of the workday on Friday, Jan 8.

We do plan to resume weekly mandatory testing for those on campus the week of Jan. 4, and will provide additional details about those processes as soon as they are finalized.

Expanded Child Care Subsidy for First Six Months of 2021 

Before the fall semester began, Case Western Reserve offered several temporary options to assist employees with child care challenges that the COVID-19 pandemic created. As we approach the spring, university leaders engaged with representatives of the Faculty Parents group and the Staff Advisory Council to assess their impact and consider options for next year.

Our data indicated that the most frequently used program was the child care subsidy. For next year, this subsidy will be increased to $800 (33% more than this semester) and cover care for children in kindergarten through sixth grade (two more grades than during this semester). The subsidy is available to benefits-eligible faculty teaching at least one course and full-time staff whose compensation was $100,000 or less.

Additional Measures for Families

This spring, the university is expanding its on-campus child care by appointment option from up to three hours to up to nine hours a day. Fees for this service will continue to be scaled by income: For those earning up to $50,000 a year, $4 an hour; for those earning between $50,001 and $99,999 a year, $7 an hour, and for those earning $100,000 or more, $10 an hour. You can register and learn more about this service from One to One Fitness by visiting their website.

Case Western Reserve also is continuing its workload flexibility programs and its $1,000 subsidy for programs at The Music Settlement.

Health & Wellness Resources During Winter Break 

Finally, we recognize that the holiday season can pose its share of challenges under the best of circumstances, much less at the end of a year so full of upheaval. Please do not hesitate to visit our pages providing COVID-19-related webinar recordings and other resources as well as those with details on how to access counseling and related support.

Thank you again for your efforts throughout this year. We offer our best wishes for a restorative winter break and wonderful new year.

Scott Cowen
Interim President

Carolyn Gregory
Vice President for Human Resources