During the press conference of 14 January, the government announced that it would relax a number of the measures. For example, universities and universities will be allowed to again provide education on location from Monday, subject to certain conditions.
What does this mean for The Hague University of Applied Sciences?
When the lockdown started in December, The Hague University of Applied Sciences (THUAS) had already chosen to offer our regular education mainly online at least until 7 February, the start of the second semester. We will maintain this in order to be able to offer our organisation and our students stability and clarity – though we will also give our programmes some freedom to offer some in-person lessons where possible and desired. Exams, practical education and the supervision of vulnerable students, for which there was also an exception during the lockdown, will continue on campus as planned. From Monday 7 February, the start of semester 2, the regular timetable will again be in operation - of course within the then applicable conditions and measures.
From 15 January, the government requires everyone in higher education to wear a face mask on campus, even in class. They also advise the wearing of medical face masks and not fabric face masks. More information on the available masks (currently only in Dutch)
Though it is a shame this measure is necessary, if this makes providing on campus education possible again, then that is more than worth it.
A maximum group size of 75 people per room will also apply, with an exception for exams and exams.
In addition, the urgent request to our students and our colleagues to do a preventive self-test at least 2 times a week remain in force; these can still be ordered via Self-tests for education (zelftestonderwijs.nl).
The manner of the transition from online only to more and in-person education, and the hybrid possibilities in between, will be decided on per programme. For example, there will be a greater need for online or hybrid solutions within our more international programmes.
What does this mean for our facilities?
Although our education will mainly be online until the new semester, the university will open its doors again at all locations from Monday. This means that from this Monday on, all students who want to, not just the more vulnerable students, can return to THUAS for self-study or group work. For the study places in the library in our main building, the ticket system remains in force: www.thehagueuniversity.com/practical-matters/library/news
Sports will be possible again under certain conditions. Keep an eye on the HHS sports app for the updated timetable.
What does this mean for our employees?
For our employees, the work-from-home norm remains unchanged. Employees should only come to work if this is strictly necessary for giving or enabling online or offline education. What this means in individual cases, you should discuss within your team and with your direct supervisor.
Open Day on 5 February
On 5 February, an Open Day of THUAS has been planned. Now that education is allowed to open its doors again and there is room for activities on location, we are following the planned hybrid approach – partly online and partly on location. We, of course, look closely at the guidelines set by the government, but also at additional measures that we can take ourselves to guarantee the safety of visitors as well as our students and colleagues, such as a good spread of visitors throughout the day, limiting the group size and a maximum of one supervisor per prospective student.
Vaccination and testing
The government has stated that a high vaccination rate is the best way to reduce the prevalence of the virus. From Monday 17 January, anyone aged 18 and over in the Haaglanden region can get both the regular vaccination and the booster shot without an appointment. The booster shot can be given three months after the last vaccination or corona infection. If you want a booster shot without an appointment, you can go to De Broodfabriek in Rijswijk. If you prefer to make an appointment, you can do so via http://coronavaccinatie-afspraak.nl/.
Do you want to know if you need to take a corona test? For example, because you have corona symptoms or have travelled from abroad? For this, the government has a new website. Answer a few short questions and get personal advice right away. Getting tested if you have symptoms.
In addition, the guidelines regarding the mandatory quarantine have also been tightened. https://quarantainecheck.rijksoverheid.nl/en
We are very happy that we can welcome our students and colleagues on location again. We know that the opportunity for in-person (live) meetings is greatly missed by both our students and employees.
On behalf of the Crisis Management Team
Elisabeth Minnemann, Hans Camps, Rajash Rawal