September 25, 2009

Dear Colleagues:

You have by now received a message from the provost regarding academic preparation for the possible H1N1 flu season.  I encourage you to review her recommendations.  I am writing to you today to follow up with some suggestions for how we may consider implementing these recommendations at UW Bothell. In order to be prepared, I would encourage all faculty and staff to:

  • Develop a contingency plan within your units, among your colleagues, with Human Resources, and using Learning Technologies to ensure academic and business continuity.
  • Be flexible and accommodating with students, subordinates, and colleagues who are absent due to illness. Faculty are encouraged to remind students of transmission prevention strategies – frequent hand washing, sneeze etiquette, and social distancing – during the first week of instruction.  Efforts to be flexible with students who may be ill and to minimize suspended classes due to faculty illness will help assure that disruption to academic progress is minimal.  I invite you to include a statement such as the following in course materials that offers students alternatives and encourages them to STAY HOME if they are sick.

    H1N1 ACTION STEPS IN THIS COURSE: As part of the campus community’s shared responsibility for minimizing the possible spread of H1N1 virus this year, it is critical that all students are familiar with the symptoms of H1N1 Flu described on the UW Bothell website at . Any student or instructor with flu-like symptoms is encouraged to stay at home until at least 24 hours after they no longer have a fever without the use of fever-reducing medications (ibuprofen or acetaminophen). If you are sick and have an extended absence, please speak with your instructor regarding alternative ways to maintain your progress in your courses. If your instructor is sick and needs to cancel class, you will be notified.

  • Get a seasonal flu shot before Fall Quarter begins.
  • Stay home if you are sick or experiencing flu-like symptoms. Limit interactions with other people for at least 24 hours after you no longer have a fever or signs of a fever, without the use of fever-reducing medicines.
  • If you are unable to meet your class, please call the Welcome Center at 425.352.5000 to arrange class coverage and centralize H1N1 data collection. Welcome Center staff will inform the appropriate Program Office that a member of their faculty will not be in class, and at faculty request will
    • Arrange for an appropriate Student Success Seminar (Career Center, Libraries, Writing and Quantitative Skills Center, and other campus groups are participating in this initiative) to be presented to the class, or
    • Post a Class Cancelled notice on the classroom door.

To assist us in responding to possible increases in flu incidence, we ask that you assist us in tracking student absenteeism from classes. Could you please let your program director know if absenteeism in your class exceeds 25%? We are not asking for individual student information but only for overall information about absenteeism.

In an effort to support classroom flexibility options, Andreas Brockhaus has developed a set of technology tools that you may consider using to enable yourself and/or students to work remotely.  You can find this resource at:

This season may present unique challenges to us as a campus, but our values of community and support will enable us to address this challenge with minimal disruption to our academic mission. I thank you in advance for your cooperation and support throughout this period.

Susan Jeffords
Vice Chancellor for Academic Affairs

Did You Know?

Forty-nine percent of UW Bothell's first year students are the first in their families to attend college.