This email was sent to managers and supervisors. Please share this information with your employees as it makes sense. If you have additional questions after reviewing the communication, please reply to this email.
Updated COVID-19 Guidelines for Supervisors
Dear Managers and Supervisors,
As we prepare to resume near-normal instruction and on-campus activities in the fall, the Roaring Back Committees have prepared the following guidelines and information for managers and supervisors. Many units may have unique operational needs that call for exceptions and alternate operational plans. However, units should carefully consider these guidelines as they transition back to pre-pandemic operations.
Reintegration Timeline and Planning
An optional planning template is available to download. Managers are encouraged to use this template, or a similar tool, to prepare and review staffing plans with unit leadership. Completed templates are not required to be submitted centrally. As you complete these steps, please follow the review and approval process outlined by your vice president.
An email sent on April 15 outlined the return-to-campus timeline for faculty and staff.
Suggested Next Steps

  • Review the need for on-campus support for June and July, and discuss this with your team. Do you anticipate needing any or all remote employees to return by a certain date? Things to consider:
  • In-person service needs
  • Planned leave/vacations
  • Timeline for any large projects/initiatives

  • For employees working remotely either part-time or full time, meet individually to discuss return dates. Important aspects of this conversation:
  • If you have an expectation or preference for when they return, please share this and explain why. 
  • Ask if there are any other considerations/concerns that need to be discussed as part of planning for this transition back to on-campus work. (ex. dependent care or other family obligations, planned vacation/leave, ITS or Facilities needs)

  • For employees currently working fully on campus, meet individually to update them on anticipated return timelines for the team, and find out if they have any concerns or questions. Things to consider:
  • Use of shared equipment/spaces
  • Planned leave/vacations
  • Job task adjustments or process changes

  • If any of your employees will need facilities service to support return to campus, please submit a Facilities Work Request by May 28. Examples may include (but are not limited to) new employees hired remotely that now need an office/desk, furniture moves, or other needed space maintenance. 

  • If any of your employees will need ITS support to facilitate their return to campus, please ask them to request these services by sending an email to by May 28. Service requests should include the date the employee will be returning to the office, contact information, and service needs. Common needs may include (but are not limited to):
  • Connecting desktop or laptop back to the ISU internet
  • Setting up phone
  • Connecting monitors to a desktop or laptop docking station
  • Resetting a password on a device that was left in the office
  • Reconnecting with office printers
Other Information and Resources
Face Coverings and Physical Distancing:

  • Effective Monday, May 17, 2021, ISU is adopting the new CDC guidance for face covering usage based on vaccine status. It is the responsibility of each employee or student to comply with these requirements based on their personal vaccination status and comfort level, and engage with their supervisor or colleagues accordingly. The University trusts employees and students to adhere to CDC guidance and make face covering decisions that are in the best interest of the health and safety of the campus community.

  • Smaller spaces that are likely to become crowded (examples: waiting areas, public transit, clinics, computer labs, etc.) should continue to function in a way that maintains and supports physical distancing. As the COVID-19 situation continues to evolve, future guidance will be shared.
  • University-sponsored travel guidance has been updated to incorporate new CDC guidelines for vaccinated and unvaccinated travelers. Non-essential and essential travel may resume using pre-COVID travel approvals.
  • Though strongly encouraged, COVID-19 vaccinations are not required for ISU faculty, staff, or students. ISU will continue to support and promote access to vaccinations.

  • In accordance with Idaho Executive Order 2021-04, ISU units may not make access to ISU services or facilities contingent on vaccination status. On-campus staffing plans should be consistent for all employees, without differentiation for vaccinated or unvaccinated employees, unless accommodations are requested and approved.
  • Managers should be encouraging and supportive of employees who choose to be vaccinated but should not imply employees must be vaccinated to remain in the workplace. Additionally, managers generally should not ask employees to divulge their vaccination status unless specifically needed to comply with CDC guidelines for group travel, nor should they inquire as to why individuals are or are not being vaccinated, as those questions from an employer could violate privacy laws.
  • Because CDC guidelines vary based on vaccination status, this can result in some uncomfortable environments in the workplace. While employers/supervisors generally should not ask about vaccination status, it is acceptable for employees/students who willingly choose to engage in conversations regarding their vaccination status to do so. For example, a fully vaccinated employee/student may choose to say “I’m fully vaccinated,” and that is ok.

  • Bengal Pharmacy and Southeast Idaho Public Health (SIPH) both have available vaccines and appointment times. More information about the vaccine is available online. Everyone is eligible to receive the COVID-19 vaccine of their choosing. Bengal Pharmacy currently has Johnson & Johnson available, and SIPH has all three available.
Accommodations Requests:

  • Disability Services staff are available to assist should employees request accommodations in order to return to work, or for those who disclose disability-related barriers.
Remote Work:

  • Supervisors are encouraged to support employee requests for remote work arrangements for positions well-suited for a remote work setting, considering the following:
  • Ability of the employee to control and schedule their own work
  • Employee has clear and understandable work assignments and tasks
  • Ability of employee to work autonomously
  • Amount of computer work
  • Ability to use telephone/video equipment to complete job duties
  • Amount of face-to-face contact for specific job duties
  • Amount of in-office reference material needed
  • Amount of generally sensitive material/data used
  • Amount of work with protected/regulated data (FERPA, HIPAA, etc.)
Health Exemption Process and Events:

  • Events should be planned with contingencies, as public health guidance may cause disruption to planned events if COVID-19 activity increases.

  • Health Exemption Requests are no longer needed for events, or instructional and research-related activities after June 28, 2021.
Contact Tracing, Illness and Exposure:
  • ISU asks that all students, faculty, and staff with any COVID-19 symptoms be tested for COVID, and quarantine at home pending results. Each individual student or employee is responsible for following guidance to support the safety of the campus community.
  • If the result is negative, employees/students can return to on-campus activities.  
  • If the result is positive, employees/students should follow CDC guidelines and complete and submit the ISU COVID-19 Self Report Form and work with ISU’s professional contact tracers who maintain confidentiality with protected health information. The contact tracers are in the best position to guide ISU personnel on isolation and quarantine needs to keep the community safe, and will coordinate any needed follow up with supervisors. 

  • As a reminder, employees may use sick leave, or students may be out of class without disclosing their medical situation to supervisors or faculty members. If an employee or student calls in sick, supervisors/faculty should remind them to report any COVID-19 symptoms or exposure using the COVID-19 Self Report Form, if applicable. If the supervisor or faculty member does not receive specific return to work/class instructions from a health care provider or the ISU contact tracing team, ISU students and employees are allowed to return to campus activities at their discretion, without being tested for COVID-19 or explaining the details of their illness. Managers should consult with HR if they feel doctor’s notes are needed as part of ongoing documented employee performance improvement efforts.  

  • Anyone who has not been fully vaccinated and had close contact with someone with COVID-19 must submit a Self-Report Form. A COVID investigator will provide instruction for quarantine duration. Supervisors may contact the contact tracers at for guidance, if needed.

  • The best way for all ISU personnel to protect themselves from acquiring COVID-19 on campus is to obtain vaccines. Because students/employees have their own discretion about being tested for COVID-19 and are responsible for following guidance, ISU faculty and supervisors will not be able to closely monitor academic and work locations for possible COVID-19 in students and staff. This makes it critical that those who want to limit their chances of acquiring COVID-19 be vaccinated. Continuing to wear masks on campus is another excellent option for students and employees to limit acquisition of COVID-19.
This communication was sent to all Idaho State University supervisors.
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