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Rescheduling teaching and other student-facing activities cancelled due to industrial action

Following the Vice-Chancellor's message of 3 April regarding planning for the summer term, and the news of the outcome of the UCU ballot on 13 April which results in the suspension of industrial action, this guidance sets out priorities and processes for rearranging teaching and other student-facing activities cancelled due to UCU industrial action in February and March 2018, and for claiming reimbursement for delivering these activities.

The intention behind the provision for reimbursement of pay is to ensure as much cancelled teaching and relevant student-facing activity as possible may now be delivered in order to enable students at all levels of study to progress and be awarded their degrees. The priority is to ensure that students can attain the learning outcomes necessary to successfully complete this year of study, whether graduating or progressing to a further year of study.

Rearrangement of teaching and student-facing activities

Plans for replacing teaching and other student-facing activities that have been recorded as cancelled within departments should prioritise face-to-face engagement that is as close as possible to that which would originally have been delivered to students.

This may include: rescheduling of lectures and seminars; re-arranging research supervisions; holding advisory sessions; or offering tutorial time and marking coursework. Further student-facing activities to be rescheduled after cancellation due to industrial action may be identified in consultation with the Head of Department.

The rescheduling of activity should be driven by the need to enable students to demonstrate course-level learning outcomes. The priority order for rescheduling activity is for final year students on professionally accredited courses, then for other finalists, then for students in other years of study.

Where content missed through the cancellation of activities is no longer included in assessments and examinations, or where it has already been made up through other arrangements, this need not be rescheduled. Heads of Department may, at their discretion, make ex gratia payments to recognise the contributions of staff who have already undertaken, with their approval, additional duties to ensure students were taught during strike days or who have mitigated impact on students by rescheduling at other times during term 2.

Support can be offered by the Central Timetabling team, who will be able to advise on centrally-managed teaching space availability. Where departments wish to schedule activities outside standard teaching hours, they should ensure this is feasible for the students affected.

Departments should take all reasonable steps to communicate details of new arrangements to their students, and to manage the impact of any clashes of rescheduled activities. Appropriate liaison with SSLCs where possible is also recommended.

Reimbursement payments

Where an individual has taken industrial action on a day when they were scheduled to teach and they now provide replacement teaching or student-facing activities in an agreed format, payment will be made at a rate of 1/365th of the member of staff’s annual salary.

Individuals are required to complete an online reimbursement form to confirm the dates for which they are claiming payment. On this form, individuals can select whether they wish for the payment to include or exclude pension contributions.

Payment will be subject to verification that the individual claiming the payment has notified the University that they have participated in industrial action. It will also be subject to confirmation from the Head of Department that the teaching or other student-facing activities were approved for rescheduling and have been delivered in an appropriate way. Payment will be made in the June payroll for all verified and authorised submissions.

Process for individuals

  • Confirm with your Head of Department or their nominated deputy which activities are to be delivered and in what format to replace teaching or other student-facing activities cancelled due to industrial action;
  • Confirm with your Head of Department any activities that have already been replaced appropriately and do not need further re-scheduling;
  • Make appropriate arrangements for re-scheduling, and notify students of arrangements;
  • Complete and submit the reimbursement form by 21 May to confirm the number of days for which reimbursement payment is claimed;
  • By submitting this form, you are confirming that you have notified the University of the days on which you participated in strike action (via email to academic.continuity@warwick.ac.uk or via the online self-declaration form). A reconciliation of relevant records will take place;
  • By submitting the form, you are stating that the rescheduling and format of activities have been approved by your Head of Department. A record of the form will be provided to your Head of Department for their confirmation;
  • Arrangements for the rescheduling of activities through sessional teaching staff will be managed through the Sessional Teaching Payroll (STP) team.

Process for Heads of Department

  • Identify nominated deputy (such as a Deputy Head of Department or departmental administrator) who has the authority to approve arrangements on your behalf and to the ability to verify the appropriate delivery of activities;
  • Confirm with staff which activities are still to be rescheduled, in what format, and in what priority order, noting that activities already delivered by other means or by other colleagues in term 2, or no longer required for assessment purposes, need not be re-scheduled;
  • Where required activities that were cancelled have already been delivered through alternative arrangements by staff who took strike action, confirm arrangements were satisfactory;
  • Confirm local arrangements to recognise staff through ex gratia payments where there were contemporaneous efforts to mitigate the impact of strike action to ensure students did not fall behind;
  • Oversee arrangements for re-scheduling and resolving any timetable clashes;
  • Ensure students are informed of new, additional classes and other arrangements;
  • During week commencing 21 May: review the departmental data provided to you by HR to confirm the rescheduled activities have been delivered by individuals claiming reimbursement;
  • If you have any queries about whether activities are appropriate for reimbursement or ex gratia payment, contact academic dot continuity at warwick dot ac dot uk for consideration by the Academic Registrar.