For current updates regarding COVID-19 from Middlebury College click here.
See below for a recent communication:
Karen, David, and I are following
up on the news from this morning that an
individual in Addison County has tested positive for the novel coronavirus. We
had a lot of information in there from a public health perspective and will, of
course, continue to communicate that vital content as we follow developments
We also know that you have
questions and concerns about what working at Middlebury will look like in the
months ahead, and how your jobs and lives—and those of your families and loved
ones—will be affected. We know this firsthand from the many individual
conversations we have had with you, and from our discussions with Staff
Council. We would like to address those incredibly important issues here.
First, it bears repeating what was
said in this morning’s email: This is a
new moment for us, not just for us at
Middlebury, but literally for everyone on the planet. We are in a changed
environment and are all working tirelessly to navigate it.
educational reality of needing to deliver a curriculum online is taking up much
of faculty and staff time, and you are doing so in unusually stressful
circumstances. We are also working with new financial realities, such as the
extreme stock market volatility and our obligation to refund a percentage of
room and board costs to a great majority of students, to name just two.
institutional level, we are guided by two overarching values that we hold side
by side: the health and well-being of our people, and of Middlebury as a whole.
As we have developed the workplace plan below, our goal has been to ensure that
your pay continues—for as long as possible—and that your work
Let us tell you
what we mean by that:
- For benefits-eligible
staff, we are committed to paying at their current level for the foreseeable
future and will continue to evaluate on a month-to-month basis.
- For the next three months,
we will provide all benefits-eligible employees what we are calling a
COVID-19 Pay Bank of up to 21 days that you can use for
circumstances in connection with the COVID-19 crisis. These are paid days that
you can use in case of COVID-19 illness, or for caring for someone with a
COVID-19 illness, or in the event that you are not able to work, or need to
self-isolate, etc. These are not vacation or CTO days. We need to create a new
pay code for this, which will take us a few days to configure.
- In addition to the Pay
Bank, you will be able to use your CTO and SLR under our ordinary policies.
- Given the current nature
of the pandemic, and how it is essential to practice social distancing, we will
now require those who are able to work remotely to do so. You can find resources
- The College still has
students living with us, and we are responsible for their care and well-being.
In normal times, our employees in dining, facilities, health, and safety are
understood as “essential personnel,” which means, when the college is full,
they are required to come to campus. However, because we have a smaller number
of students now, we must deploy a smaller percentage of staff whose
work must be performed on campus.
- For those employees whose
work is usually performed on campus—but whose work is now no longer
necessary—we will make best efforts to assign alternative work with appropriate
social distancing. Staff who are reassigned and perform other work will
maintain their current rate of pay.
- For those employees
for whom we cannot find alternative work on campus, we may be able to
temporarily assign some people to alternative work off campus, in
coordination with the hospital and the town, with appropriate social
distancing. Details of how such assignments would work have not been determined
yet, but we would make best efforts to maintain current rates of pay.
- If none of the above
alternatives is successful, we will ask staff to use their COVID-19 Pay Bank,
Medical Leave Assistance Program, and their own CTO or SLR. These
employees will be given “on reserve” status and may be called back if work
becomes available. If on-reserve staff are called back, they will be
required to return to work. If they do not return to work when called
back, they risk losing their pay and access to their COVID-19 Pay
- We will create special
forms of recognition to honor those employees who cannot work remotely, and
whose positions take them into the community—either in Middlebury College or
We know this is a lot to take in,
and that it will take adjusting to, as well.
Given the twin values we held in
balance during the making of this plan—the
health and well-being of our people, and of Middlebury as a whole—we feel we
have created a way forward that is compassionate, creative, and based in the
realities of the day. We still have details to work out and will have
more to tell you within the week.
In the meantime, while some of you
are already working remotely, those of you with responsibilities that can
only be performed on campus should continue to report to work on campus as
long as you are not sick. Thank you for all that you do for Middlebury, for our
students and faculty, and for each other.
With great respect and admiration,
VP for Human Resources
EVP for Finance and Administration