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9 september update: stay alert and travel advice

9 September 2020 by Coronavirus

Memo for students and staff members.

Xplora

We will be looking into the possibility of using the Xploras as collective workspaces for smaller groups of students and/or staff. There are also quite a few smaller rooms that may not be suitable for classroom teaching right now, but which are nevertheless well suited to individual or group learning activities. We will provide more information about this next week. 

Stay alert

We have noticed that both students and staff sometimes find it difficult to maintain sufficient distance from one another. They have a tendency to move chairs closer together because this makes it easier to communicate, for example. Additionally, they arrive on campus one hour before their class is due to start in order to meet with their fellow students. We have also seen classrooms or conference rooms being used by more people than permitted. Of course, we understand why this is happening, but this really should stop. Stay alert and remind each other about this as well. Check the most important guidelines.

Travel advice for Antwerp

The travel advice for Antwerp has been changed. The colour code for the province of Antwerp has been changed from orange (advice against all but essential travel) to yellow (be careful, your health is at risk). The orange code (advice against all but essential travel) continues to apply for the city of Antwerp and each of its nine districts.

However, students and staff from the province of Antwerp (not the city!) will be able to travel to Avans once again without any need to satisfy supplementary measures or agreements. 

Rectification: how to act if you were tested positive for COVID-19

There was an error in last week’s update concerning the practical guidelines for people who were tested positive for COVID-19. You do not have to call in sick by default if you received a positive result. If you have only mild symptoms, you can continue to work from home online, or consult with your supervisor about adapting your set of tasks. You only need to call in sick if you are really ill or unable to work due to your symptoms.

Studies, work placements and graduation abroad (spring)  

Last May, the Executive Board took a supplementary decision with regard to outgoing students for study purposes (minor), work placements or graduation in the autumn of 2020. We have now reached the point that we will need to take a good look at the 2021 spring semester as well. The policy as adopted last May will be remain unchanged. This means the following:  

  • Outgoing students: for study purposes (minors), work placements or graduation within Europe
    Students may prepare themselves for a stay within Europe. Of course, travel is only permitted to countries with a travel advice code that is yellow or orange, as issued by the Dutch Ministry of Foreign Affairs (visit goingabroad.avans.nl for the Regulations on trips and stays abroad). An exception applies to countries that impose travel restrictions on people travelling from the Netherlands, check the newsupdate 21 augustus. Just as in the autumn semester of 2020, there are still many uncertainties. We recommend that students investigate the possibility of a Plan B together with their departments. This Plan B can differ per person and per study programme, and must be approved by the student’s school.   
     
  • Outgoing students for study purposes (minors), work placements or graduation outside Europe 
    Avans urgently advises people not to make any plans at present for a stay abroad for study purposes (minor), work placements or graduation in non-European countries this autumn. We believe that the risks associated with a stay outside Europe are considerable. People may be unable to return to the Netherlands in the event of another lockdown, and the healthcare provided in non-European countries is very different. In addition, this could cause financial difficulties and delays in study progress.   

If a student nevertheless makes preparations to travel to a country outside of Europe (assigned code green or code yellow, see the Regulations on trips and stays abroad), the student will need to sign a statement in regard of this with his or her department. Students are advised to make provisions for a Plan B, in the event that the travel advice colour code suddenly changes. Travel to a country with an orange or red travel advice is not permitted.  

An exception from the above will be made for students who are staying in their country of origin (not the Netherlands) for study purposes (minor), work placements or graduation. This would apply to a Canadian student staying in Canada, for example. However, the student concerned is still obliged to sign a statement with his or her department.  

Last updated on 16 September 2020.