Guidelines for a partial closing during winter break

Iowa State leaders last week shared guidelines for a partial campus closing during the winter break. The university will reduce services Monday, Dec. 24, through Tuesday, Jan. 1, when many external organizations and businesses also will operate at reduced levels.

Three university holidays fall during this window: Dec. 24-25 and Jan. 1, as does the Dec. 29-30 weekend. When the Dec. 22-23 weekend is factored in, it leaves four work days -- Dec. 26, 27, 28 and 31 -- for which deans, vice presidents and senior vice presidents are encouraged to allow employees to use available leave when it works with scheduled events and work priorities.

The combination of weekends, holidays and leave days creates up to an 11-day winter break for employees. Energy savings, where building thermostats can be adjusted for significant time periods, is another goal of the partial closing.

What to do now

In their memo to administrative officers, interim senior vice president Pam Cain (finance, university services) and interim vice president Kristi Darr (university human resources) noted the closing is not mandatory. They wrote that critical services, maintenance and research can continue, but many services will be reduced to weekend or holiday levels.

Units should share their plans in advance with the appropriate dean, vice president or senior vice president. Offices that close must have procedures in place to handle incoming messages (phone or email) and emergencies. By the first week of November, units are encouraged to share any partial closing plans with staff and post them on their websites so that students, customers and staff can make plans.

During winter break

Offices should include their reduced office hours and emergency contact information in voice message and on websites.

Facilities staff and police officers will work during the partial closing, but they can't monitor the entire campus at all times. Trouble calls can be made to facilities planning and management, 294-5100, or the public safety department, 294-4428.

Cain and Darr referred administrators and supervisors to two documents for more information:

Staffing questions may be directed to HR liaisons or university human resources, 294-4800.