For Staff

30 September eNews: Safety guidance, student messages, digital developments, celebrations, events and more

The banner image for the 30 September edition of enews, showcasing some of the social distancing signage on campus. September 2020.

Arrangements for the new academic year – a message from the VC

In an email to all colleagues on 25 September, the Vice-Chancellor, Professor Simone Buitendijk, outlined arrangements for the new academic year, including our thinking on delivering face-to-face teaching. You can also read the message sent to students on the coronavirus website.

Further restrictions in Leeds: what they mean for the University

On 25 September, the Government announced further restrictions for residents in Leeds following an increase in rates of transmission of covid-19 in the city. Please see the Leeds City Council website to ensure you understand the restrictions and advice.

We want to reassure you that at present, this does not change life on campus. Students and staff can and should continue to attend campus for face-to-face teaching activity, use the library and study spaces and to carry out work if you are required to be on site. Students can still socialise with people they live with, either in private accommodation or a hall of residence, and participate in the social activities provided on campus, so long as they remain in their household.

Covid-19 guidance – what to do if you test positive or need to self-isolate

New guidance has been issued to highlight how we will support colleagues who develop symptoms of covid-19, test positive and/or are required to follow Government guidance to self-isolate. Read the full guidance on the steps you must take, details about the University’s covid-19 reporting line and answers to questions you may have about how we are supporting test and trace.

Guidance for physical teaching

In line with the message from the VC issued on 25 September (see above), new guidance has been issued to help teaching colleagues understand the safety measures implemented for the protection of both staff and students when they need to deliver face-to-face teaching. You can download the key points in a handy poster format, which will also be located in all central teaching spaces. We’ve also updated the same webpage with practical strategies on ‘how to say it’s not okay’ when you see someone not following safety guidelines.

How to report campus concerns

If you have a query, concern or suggestion related to covid-19 control on campus (e.g. activities where queues form, or issues about buildings or cleaning etc.), contact the Estates Helpdesk via email or call 0113 343 5555. Email Wellbeing, Safety & Health for issues relating to safety on campus.

NHS information…   

Download the NHS covid-19 app

Members of the University community are encouraged to download and use the free NHS app to help people identify if they’ve been in close contact with someone who subsequently tests positive for covid-19. Posters with QR check-in codes to scan with the app are being put up at key points across campus.

Covid-19 vaccine research registry

Visit the NHS website to find out more and register to take part in large-scale coronavirus vaccination trials. The new NHS vaccine research registry will help approved researchers get in touch with volunteers, who are required from all backgrounds and age groups, with or without existing health conditions.

Winter flu vaccination

Winter flu virus season is approaching and we’re encouraging eligible colleagues to book an appointment for a free vaccination through the NHS as soon as possible. Subject to vaccine dose supply, the NHS aims to extend eligibility to people aged between 50 and 64. Once we have notice that those at highest risk have been prioritised, we will encourage and support more colleagues to get vaccinated.

Free help to quit smoking

Smokers are encouraged to put their lungs first, strengthen their immune system and breathe easier ahead of flu season with the help of the extra support available as part of the national ‘Stoptober’ campaign. Download the free NHS Stoptober app or take advantage of the free remote ‘quit smoking’ support offered by the University to help you stop for good.

Student messages…   

Welcoming students to Leeds

The new Returning to Leeds resource has been launched this week for continuing students, and teaching starts in a hybrid mode, with the latest guidance issued on providing face-to-face sessions in a covid-secure way. For an update on what’s happening on campus and in student communications, read the Welcoming students to Leeds update on For Staff.

Guidance on laptop loans

Our hybrid learning approach may pose challenges for some students who don’t have their own laptops, so new guidance has been created on arranging laptop loans. If you’re an Academic Personal Tutor or member of support staff, find out how to help your students get the equipment they need

Virtual careers fair

Our students will still get the opportunity to meet employers and talk about their future, thanks to the adaptability and initiative of our Employer Team at the Careers Service. Our first ever Virtual Graduate Jobs, Placements and Internships Fair takes place on Monday 5 October, featuring online drop-in rooms and one-to-ones with a huge range of employers and organisations via the CareerFair+ app. 

Digital developments…   

Guide to hybrid teaching and learning: tools, resources and support

As the start of teaching approaches, we want to ensure that colleagues and students have everything they need to make a successful transition to hybrid teaching and learning. You can now access guidance on Student Education Delivery principles, virtual classrooms and available support

Teams Live Events update

Teams Live Events let you schedule presentations with up to 10,000 attendees. Microsoft temporarily made them available during the summer, but this access ends tomorrow (Thursday 1 October). We’re upgrading our Microsoft licence, but Teams Live Events might not be available until the end of October. Please contact the IT Service Desk as soon as possible if you have an urgent need to present to a large group (more than 300 people) during this time.

New campus photography

You can now access a new folder of coronavirus-related campus dressing photos in our Image Library. These can be used for official University print publications, websites and video. See our University photography guidance for further information and please note there’s a 48-hour turnaround for Image Library requests.

Campus facilities…   

Bike Hub reopens

We are pleased to announce the Bike Hub has reopened, offering cycle hire and maintenance, following building re-entry approval. Things will be a little different and we will be operating on a ‘pre-booked appointment-only’ basis in order to follow social distancing guidelines.

Library services

Extra study spaces are now available to book in the Edward Boyle, Laidlaw, Health Sciences and Brotherton Libraries. You can also reserve slots to use the Special Collections Research Centre, while a click-and-collect service is operating from the Edward Boyle Library.

Welcome back to The Edge

The Edge is thrilled to welcome back members. Ahead of your visit, please take a minute to watch the safety video so you know what to expect when you arrive.

Free drink voucher

Great Food at Leeds (GFaL) Club members can claim a free drink at any of its cafés that have reopened on campus. Vouchers have been sent to members via the app; simply present it at the till by Friday 30 October. GFaL is working on safely reopening its cafés, in line with buildings across campus. In accordance with Government policy, face masks or coverings are mandatory for all customers entering catering outlets, including The Refectory. Visit the GFaL website for a full list of scheduled opening dates and times, but please be aware these are subject to change.

Esther Simpson Building progress

Watch a time-lapse video and read about the major progress already made in constructing the Esther Simpson Building in Cloberry Street. The innovative teaching centre – named in honour of a Leeds graduate’s life-long vocation helping resettle scholars who fled from totalitarian regimes – is part of the transformation programme to provide world-class facilities for Leeds University Business School (LUBS) and the School of Law.


Celebrate Our Staff

See the latest bumper edition of our regular feature celebrating the achievements of colleagues across the University, showcasing an array of awards, fellowships and appointments. Don’t forget you can contact Internal Comms to make submissions for the next roll of honour in October. This is open to all colleagues.

Partnership Awards 2020  

For the last in our series of profiles on the winners of this year’s Partnership Awards, which recognise the amazing achievements of staff and students working together to support all aspects of our University community, we focus on the recipient of the School of the Year accolade.

Student Support Fund smashes target

Thanks to the wonderful generosity of our Leeds community, including many colleagues, we’ve now raised in excess of £150,000 to help support more than 500 of our students facing extreme financial hardship due to covid-19.

Get involved…   

Black History Month 2020

October marks Black History Month in the UK – the annual celebration and acknowledgement of the history, achievements and contributions that people of African and Caribbean backgrounds have made to this country during many generations. See the Equality Policy Unit website for a full programme of events being held online and in Leeds to promote knowledge, understanding and an awareness of Black History.

Online workshop

Register now for the next Share, Adopt, Adapt Workshop (SAAW) tomorrow (Thursday 1 October, 11am to 12 noon), when the focus will be on effective practice by Learning Technologists. Relaunched by Leeds Institute for Teaching Excellence (LITE) in an online format, the new workshop series continues to examine and showcase best practice across the University, as well as address new challenges posed by covid-19 restrictions.

Research Development Fund applications

Applications to the next round of the Research Development Fund close on Monday 5 October. Awards of up to £600 are available to support patient, public or stakeholder involvement or engagement in the research design stage.


National Inclusion Week

There’s still time to share and promote everyday inclusion during this year’s National Inclusion Week, which runs until Sunday 4 October. We’ve scheduled a range of online events to support the annual awareness initiative, providing a great opportunity to share inspiring practices and ideas.

Leeds Digital Festival 2020

Colleagues across the University are showcasing their digital expertise, as part of a record-breaking programme for the largest tech event in the UK. Leeds Digital Festival’s packed schedule runs until Friday 2 October.

Be Curious 2020

Sewing, the science of soap, squashing strawberries and spider webs in your brain... colleagues across the University have been pulling out all the stops to create some amazing demonstrations and ‘try at home’ activities, as part of a jam-packed Be Curious 2020 programme. Join us online from 10-23 October to try them for yourself as we showcase our world-leading research to the wider public.

Switch ON to Opera North

Our DARE partners, Opera North, will be streaming a special concert live from Leeds Town Hall at 7pm tonight (Wednesday 30 September). The event, hosted by BBC Radio 3’s Suzy Klein, will be free to watch on YouTube and will feature the chorus and orchestra plus a range of guests, including Elizabeth Llewellyn and Fflur Wyn. The concert celebrates the start of Switch ON – Opera North’s brand-new season of events, featuring a series of musical performances together with insights from the cast and creative teams.

In case you missed it…  

Updated Virtual Windows Desktop

Leadership programmes registration

Get ready for the HE-BCI survey

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