As we plan to come back to our campuses we want to remind everyone we all have a part to play in reducing the risk of COVID-19 spreading. We’ll be giving you all the information you need ahead of the start of the autumn term including dedicated student guides.
Please remember to:
- Wash your hands regularly
- Maintain social distancing
- Clean shared equipment before and after use
We’re also asking you to wear a face covering in all public areas where it’s difficult to maintain social distancing.
We’ll be helping you with signs and floor-markings in key locations so please check and follow all guidance. We’ve also introduced enhanced cleaning including regular cleaning and disinfection of high touch points.
It might take longer to get around our campuses due to new rules so please don’t rush and allow yourself extra-time.
We’ll be keeping an eye on the latest Government and scientific advice so we can respond quickly to any changes and update you. We’ve completed a full risk assessment and will be implementing control measures to reduce the risk of transmission and protect our community.
We’ll be supporting you through the challenges of returning to our campuses
We need to support each other at this time so let’s be patient as we all learn to change our behaviour on our campuses. Also, if you are worried about the health and wellbeing of someone you know please let someone know.
The health advice is clear. Regularly washing your hands with soap and warm water for 20 seconds is central to preventing COVID-19 transmission.
We will be making sure that all hand washing facilities are cleaned and checked regularly to ensure that everything is in good working order and we want you to report any problems to the Estates helpdesk.
Wiping down surfaces with detergent, sanitisers or warm washing-up liquid and then washing your hands will also help to reduce the risk of transmission.
We’ll be providing anti-bacterial wipes in central areas to help you wipe down keyboards or workstations.
Social distancing and moving around our campus
Social distancing is still really important. Everyone has a role to play in slowing the spread of COVID-19, and in protecting themselves, their family, and the University of Essex community.
Walking around the campus might take longer than you expect due to social distancing measures, but you’re helping keep everyone safe.
It’s okay to take your time, give people space and you might need to queue. Follow the signage when you are moving around outside or in our buildings. Being kind and staying positive is going to help everyone.
We all need to remember that some of our community might be feeling vulnerable or worried. This might be for personal health reasons or they live with someone vulnerable so we all need to pay attention to social distancing guidance and support each other through this difficult time.
Social distancing in lecture rooms, computer labs and study spaces
We’ve thought carefully about the layout in your lecture rooms. Seating layouts will be clearly displayed for you and we’ll rearrange furniture if necessary. You’ll need to remember to maintain social distancing if you are waiting to go into a lecture.
Follow signs and guidance in study spaces. You can really help by not sharing workstations and equipment when you are in study spaces.
In computer labs you’ll use alternate computers and wipe the keyboard, mouse and table before you use them and afterwards.
Social distancing in shops, food outlets, bars and banks
If you are in enclosed spaces like shops, food outlets or banks, please follow the signs, check your distance and don’t forget your face covering. The number of people allowed into different outlets might be limited to ensure social distancing. It might also take longer to serve you and you might need to queue longer than normal.
Social distancing and gatherings
Gatherings on campus at the moment need to be limited to small groups following current Government guidance, this means no more than six people in any group, with social distancing maintained.
Social distancing in toilets
Remember that social distancing applies in toilets too. Give people space. If no cubicles are vacant just pop back outside until someone leaves then go back in.
Travelling to our campuses
When travelling to the University avoid, where possible, public transport. If you have to use public transport, wear a face covering and try to avoid rush hours.
The University is asking that face masks/face coverings are worn in all public campus areas where social distancing is difficult to maintain or in specifically designated locations. This is most likely for short periods indoors; in crowded areas, corridors, shops, food outlets and travelling on public transport to the University. See Section Five of Adapting our Behaviours Essential information (pdf)
Every member of staff and student on our campuses will be issued with two washable face coverings in the autumn term.
Please remember face masks/coverings will only be effective if they are worn properly, covering the nose and mouth and fitted snugly, and kept clean. Make sure you change your face covering daily and wash your hands when putting it on or taking it off your face.
Even if you are wearing a face covering you need to maintain social distancing whenever possible.
Supporting you through COVID-19
Enhanced cleaning will be undertaken in some communal areas including more regular cleaning and disinfection of high touch points.
Where a member of staff or student has been identified as being COVID-19 positive, and the work/study area cannot be left fallow for 72 hours, deep cleaning protocols will be implemented.
Of course our cleaning teams will also continue to provide essential cleaning in both academic areas and student accommodation.
Keeping you updated
We’ll be giving you regular updates through our webpages and regular email updates.
There will be signage explaining the latest prevention measures in place in our buildings and services across the campuses.
Find out more about COVID-19 and how the University are supporting you on our COVID-19 Student web pages
We’re delivering online learning for all students about reducing COVID-19 risks on our campuses.
Promoting your wellbeing
Our Student Wellbeing and Inclusivity Service is always there for you to offer you guidance and support. If for any reason stricter social distancing measures are reintroduced we’ll adapt our services so we can continue to offer you the support you need.