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What happens if I have more than one year of accrued vacation time on or after January 1, 2022?

At the end of FY20, the university is provided 18 months’ notice for this change to ensure that staff have ample opportunity to use their vacation time to get excess balances below the new maximum accrual level before the policy change goes into effect. Staff vacation is accrued on a monthly basis. On or after January 1, 2022, staff with accrued vacation time that equals or exceeds one year will not earn the monthly accrual for each month where they equal/exceed the maximum accrual.  They will not accrue again until they bring their balances below the maximum accrual level by using their vacation time. The monthly accrual rate will not change.

Here are two examples of how this will work:

Example 1: A full-time exempt staff member has worked at Tufts for 10 years and has a total of 145 vacation hours as of January 2022. The staff member will not accrue vacation in January because their balance is greater than 140 hours, which is their vacation accrual maximum. This staff member then uses 35 hours of vacation in February and their balance decreases to 110 hours. They then will accrue vacation time (11.67 hours) again beginning in February. 

Example 2: A full-time staff, 40 hour/week non-exempt member with 10 years of service has 115 vacation hours as of January 15, 2022 and this person's maximum accrual is 120 hours. This staff member will accrue 5 hours in January (a partial accrual instead of the full 10 hours) to bring their balance to up to the vacation maximum of 120 hours. This staff member then uses 40 hours of vacation in February and their balance decreases to 80 hours. They then will accrue vacation time (10 hours) again beginning in February 15. 

Last update: Friday, Jun 26, 2020 - 3:57pm
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What steps should staff take to prepare for the new vacation time accrual policy?

Since this change will impact people in different ways, the following steps are recommended:

All supervisors/managers work with their direct reports to develop a plan to take accrued vacation time with consideration to business operations and essential needs of the department. Managers consider coverage for their department plans and projects to account for the fact that staff will be taking additional vacation before December 31, 2020.

Responsibilities for staff and supervisors include:

Staff:

  • Can check their vacation balances in eServe and will have 18 months to plan for this change and draw down time that has been earned to the new one-year maximum.
  • Will not be able to accrue additional time as of 1/1/22, until their balance falls below the new one-year maximum level.
  • Will work with their supervisor to develop a plan to use vacation time.
  • It is important to also partner with your department timekeeper and report your time off to them as soon as your time off request is approved so they can track your time accurately.

Note: No changes will be made to the monthly rate at which an employee earns vacation time. The change impacts the maximum level of allowable vacation time.

Supervisors:

  • Will monitor their staff’s accrued vacation time. They will work with staff members with balances exceeding one year’s of accrual of earned vacation time to ensure that vacation time is taken to reduce excess balances. It is expected that those with vacation balances that exceed one year’s worth of accruals will reduce balances by two-thirds prior to June 30, 2021, with the remaining one-third of the excess balance used by December 31, 2021.
  • Will work with staff to consider vacation requests and prepare for operational coverage while ensuring that vacation time is planned and taken.
  • Will check their staff’s vacation time in eServe; they also can request staff vacation accrual reports from their department administrator to assist in monitoring balances.

For those senior leaders who have high vacation balances, develop and share their plans to lower their vacation balance (e.g., sharing with the team that they are taking Fridays off for the summer; taking a two-week vacation; etc.). This reinforces the message that staff are encouraged to use their time.

It is essential that staff participate in planning time off to reduce these vacation accruals in a timely way. It is every manager’s responsibility to work with their staff to help manage these reductions.

Last update: Friday, Jun 26, 2020 - 3:56pm
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How can staff and faculty maintain social distance when they return to an office?

If you work in an open environment, be sure to maintain at least six feet of distance from co-workers. If possible, have at least one empty workspace separating you from another co-worker. You should always wear a face mask or face covering while in a shared workspace/room. Departments must assess open work environments and meeting rooms to institute measures to physically separate and increase distance between employees, other coworkers, and third parties, such as:

Place visual cues such as floor decals, colored tape, or signs to indicate where people should stand while waiting in line.

Place one-way directional signage in large open workspaces with multiple thruways to increase distance between employees moving through the space.

If you work in an office, no more than one person should be in the same room unless the required six feet of distancing can be consistently maintained. If more than one person is in a room, masks/face coverings should always be worn.

Temporary structures to better define private workspaces may be necessary. Consult with your department head for guidance.

Masks/face coverings should be worn by any staff in a reception/receiving area. Masks/face coverings should be used when inside any Tufts facility where others are present and likely to be in close proximity, including walking in narrow hallways where others travel and in break rooms, conference rooms, and other meeting locations.

Last update: Thursday, Jun 25, 2020 - 11:51am
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When and how will full on-campus operations resume?

Tufts has not set a specific deadline for returning to full on-campus operations. Instead, the university intends to take a phased approach, which can generally be described as follows:

  • Phase 0 – Stay-at-Home Advisory (essential employees only)
  • Phase 1 – Limited Access (essential employees plus limited staff to support certain labs and clinics)
  • Phase 2 – Preparation for Hybrid Reopening* (Phase 1 staff plus necessary support staff)
  • Phase 3 – Hybrid Reopening* (Phase 2 staff plus additional support staff)
  • Phase 4 – New Normal (all staff)

*Hybrid Reopening may include a combination of online and in-person academic and extracurricular activities.

On Tuesday, June 23, the university announced its plans for restarting residential campus operations in Fall 2020, for students in the schools of Arts and Sciences and Engineering and the School of the Museum of Fine Arts at Tufts. Please see the Fall 2020 Campus Guide for AS&E Students for more information. For information about Fall 2020 and the graduate and professional schools, please refer to the individual websites of the schools. 
 
Tufts plans to phase in the return of staff over time in a coordinated process to prioritize appropriate social distancing, availability of PPE (personal protective equipment), hygiene protocols, symptom screening, testing capabilities for COVID-19, and contact tracing.  
 
All members of the Tufts community will be given advance notice of when they will be expected to return to work on campus. 
 
No one should report to work on campus unless and until they have been explicitly cleared to do so by their school or department leadership.  
 
Tufts will expand on-site staffing based on an assessment of mission-critical operations, ability to control and manage specific work environments, and necessity of accessing on-site resources. Return-to-campus decisions, once approved, will be issued by your respective dean, vice president, or division leader.

Last update: Thursday, Jun 25, 2020 - 11:50am

What will determine when faculty and staff are required to return to campus?

All staffing decisions will be communicated through your respective dean, vice president or vice provost.

The dates when employees will need to return to campus will be determined as part of the overall COVID-19 planning process and will likely be phased in, based on an employee’s function.

Last update: Thursday, Jun 25, 2020 - 11:50am
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What are fall plans at Friedman School of Nutrition Science and Policy?

The Friedman School will offer a flexible and hybrid academic experience this fall with a mix of virtual and on campus activities. Read more on the Friedman School's website.

Last update: Tuesday, Jun 23, 2020 - 1:16pm

What are the fall plans for graduate programs at the School of Engineering?

All graduate students in the School of Engineering are welcome to come to campus in person. If for some reason that is not possible for you, we can provide options, such as taking classes virtually.  Find more information in the Fall 2020 Campus Guide for AS&E students

Last update: Tuesday, Jun 23, 2020 - 12:43pm

What are the fall plans for the Graduate School of Arts and Sciences?

All graduate students in the Graduate School of Arts and Sciences are welcome to come to campus in person. Graduate students will have a variety of class formats, including in-person, virtual, and a hybrid of the two. Find more information in the Fall 2020 Campus Guide for AS&E students

Last update: Tuesday, Jun 23, 2020 - 12:43pm

What are fall plans for the School of the Museum of Fine Arts at Tufts? 

The studio arts curriculum offered by SMFA at Tufts has been completely redesigned by the faculty to mix in-depth virtual instruction with options for graduate students to receive supplies and equipment at home or to access studios and facilities in person to complete coursework. Find more information in the Fall 2020 Campus Guide for AS&E students

Last update: Tuesday, Jun 23, 2020 - 12:42pm

What are the fall plans for Cummings School? 

On the Grafton campus, Cummings School will offer online and in-person instruction for veterinary, masters, and PhD students. Read more on Cummings School's website.

Last update: Tuesday, Jun 23, 2020 - 12:29pm

What are the fall plans for The Fletcher School?

This fall, all courses at The Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy will be offered remotely. We currently intend to offer our spring semester in a hybrid form with both residential and remote offerings. Read more about plans for fall on The Fletcher School's website.

Last update: Tuesday, Jun 23, 2020 - 12:27pm

What are the fall plans for the School of Dental Medicine?

First- and second-year students at the School of Dental Medicine will have remote education in the fall with clinical experiences shifted to spring. Some advanced students may be back for hands-on and clinical education in the fall. The Dental School will update their site as information becomes available.

Last update: Tuesday, Jun 23, 2020 - 12:25pm

These FAQs are subject to change. Please check back here for the latest guidance. If you do not  find the information you are looking for, please send an email to COVID19@tufts.edu.