Information for staff

Key things to know

Want to help set the agenda for the next academic year?

Look ahead with the Vice-Chancellor's update to staff and the follow up Q and A session, which covers plans for the next academic year.

Not sure what to expect at the testing centre on campus? We take you through the process step-by-step in this video produced by YSTV.

On campus? Get tested regularly

It is crucial that staff who visit campus get tested regularly. We can all help protect vulnerable people in the community and on campus, and help drive rates down so that we can continue to ease restrictions during spring and summer.

Symptom-free testing is available to all at the testing centre on Campus West. and our new pop-up testing centre on Campus East. We strongly encourage you to get two tests a week, three days apart.

If you test positive you should let the University know that you're self-isolating by telephoning your line manager.

If you have any Covid-19 symptoms you should self-isolate and book a test via the NHS.

Give something back

Do you want to support community resilience, rebuilding and recovery from the Covid-19 emergency? You can have up to two days’ paid and two days’ unpaid leave to get involved in Covid-19 volunteering, including joining the NHS Covid-19 vaccine team.

The Covid-19 staff volunteering scheme runs from 1 May 2020 until 31 March 2021, so you can apply even if you have already volunteered previously.

Please express your interest or let us know if you are already volunteering through our online form.

Where possible, you should volunteer through York Cares, our partner charity for employee volunteering. Let us know how you’d like to help and we will look to match you to a project where you can make a difference.


You must self-isolate if you:

  • have any Covid-19 symptoms (a new continuous cough, high temperature, loss or change of taste or smell)

  • have tested positive for Covid-19 (you can book a test through the NHS Covid-19 app, the website or by telephoning 119)

  • share a household with someone with symptoms or who has tested positive

  • are contacted and asked to do so by either the University or NHS Test and Trace

  • have travelled to the UK from a non-exempt country.


The People and Organisational Development team has pulled together resources to support your wellbeing while working remotely.

If you need to talk to someone:

Working arrangements and pay

HR have published information on supporting staff during lockdown with enhanced flexible working arrangements.

The guidance will be in place until 31 March 2021 and covers:

  • balancing work and homeschooling

  • flexible working options

  • additional help for carers

  • shielding and health conditions

  • wellbeing

Information on tax relief while working at home is available on the HMRC website.

Working remotely

Our Working at York page covers:

It also includes guidance on technology and data protection. More guidance can also be found on the Working remotely (Skills guide) page.

You can also request access to campus, for example if you need to collect equipment.

Resources, guidance and policies

Our information on covid-secure measures includes:

  • how we will deal with cases of Covid-19 on campus

  • covid-secure leads

  • using campus spaces during lockdown

  • policy and management procedure, and risk assessments

  • ventilation and face coverings

  • business travel and business critical spend


As a research intensive University, our community remains committed to the quality of our research, which is carried out to the highest standards.

Our staff research pages contain:

Critical workers

While the general lockdown guidance is to stay at home and work from home if possible, some University staff are eligible to travel to work as critical workers.

This includes staff involved with in-person teaching activities, researchers who need access to on-campus specialist spaces and research facilities, and staff supporting students and essential front-line operations.

We are working through any implications for our GTAs. Government advice to date has also advised us that postgraduate researchers should be treated on the same basis as employees, so should work from home if they can, but those who require access to specialist facilities for their work may also do so.

For all those continuing this on-campus activity, we are reviewing all of our health and safety risk assessments, to provide assurance that we are operating as safely as possible in these difficult circumstances.

School places

In accordance with Government guidance, colleagues in Higher Education are currently considered to be in scope as ‘critical workers’ for eligibility for school places during the current lockdown.

Therefore, it is our current understanding that if you are an employee of the University of York, you fall within this scope as a ‘critical worker’.

However, it is essential that we collectively make every effort to protect the NHS and reduce the risk of spreading Covid-19.

Therefore, children with at least one parent or carer who is a critical worker can go to school or college if required, but parents and carers should keep their children at home if they can.

The Government's position remains that everyone who can work from home should do so.

This is in accordance with Government guidance updated on 12 January 2021 and shared on the WonkHE website.

Please consider whether you can work from home, and work with your line manager to see if you can balance homeschooling with your work commitments, in order to release capacity for school places to those in the community who are not able to do so.

Please contact if you need any further assistance.

Using campus space during lockdown

In line with government guidance, in all cases you may only leave your home for work if you cannot reasonably work from home. Staff can come to campus where this is permitted under specific scenarios. For full details of the permitted scenarios see:

In order to keep track of who is in University buildings, you will need to sign in using the sign-in sheet provided by your department. If you're planning on being on campus for most or all of your working day (eg for physical or mental wellbeing, or lack of suitable space to work at home), you should discuss it with your line manager before travelling.

Additional contacts

For most queries, please contact your department in the first instance, or email

External information sources

In addition to University sources, you should also consult these official sources of information: