Universiteit Leiden

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Dossier

Coronavirus updates

This page is updated regularly; the latest update is at the top. Updates from previous months can be found on the left side of this page.

The caretaker cabinet announced new measures on 26 November. There are a few minor changes to the measures that affect students and staff at Leiden University, in particular relating to sports and restaurant facilities.

University remains open
The University will remain open for teaching. You do not have to maintain 1.5m distance within University buildings, but you are advised to keep your distance where possible, and to avoid busy areas. Please be considerate of others. The Executive Board would once again like to stress the importance for the well-being of our students of on-campus teaching, and the opportunity to meet up and work together.  

Concerns among staff and teachers
For students it is important that the University remains open, but this does raise concerns among our staff and lecturers. The Executive Board understands these concerns. It is important that we continue to talk to one another about these concerns and look for the best ways to implement the measures. We will continue to monitor the situation closely and will make adjustments if and when necessary.

Work from home
Everyone is strongly advised to work from home. If this is absolutely impossible, you must make sure you observe the 1.5m distance when you are on University premises.

Sports facilities
The University Sports Centre (USC) and Plexus in Leiden and Beehive in The Hague will be closed for sports activities after 17:00 hrs.

Catering facilities
The restaurant and catering facilities in University buildings will be closed after 17:00 hrs.

Follow the basic rules
We strongly urge everyone to follow the basic rules from the Corona Check and the Campus Protocol:

  • Work from home where possible.
  • Get tested quickly if you have symptoms.
  • Do the Corona Check before you come to the University.
  • Socially distance by 1.5m if and when you can.
  • Do a self-test (lateral flow) twice a week, even if you don’t have any symptoms. You can order them free.
  • Our advice is: get vaccinated.

There may be further details that need to be worked out. More information will follow about this on Monday. Please check this website regularly for updates.

The caretaker government announced new measures on 12 November because of the rapid increase in coronavirus cases. The following new measures apply to students and staff of Leiden University from Monday 15 November:

Maximum group size for teaching
Once again, a maximum of 75 people are allowed per room. All tutorials and classes with 75 people maximum can continue as usual. For lectures, we will consider Monday a transition day to give everyone the opportunity to make arrangements. If you have a lecture on Monday with more than 75 people, check on Brightspace whether this will be online or streamed. If that is the case, follow the lecture from home. If that is not the case, you can attend the lecture in person.

By Monday at the latest, students will receive information through Brightspace on how their classes will be taught from Tuesday 16 November. The aim is to use a model that makes the most possible use of the capacity of 75 people per room, and to provide the lecture online for the remaining students. The Executive Board is keen to emphasise how important in-person teaching is for our students’ well-being. Students will once again have to reserve a study space due to the limited capacity (here too max. 75 people per room). For more information see the Library website.

Tests and exams
The maximum group size of 75 people does not apply to tests and exams.

Inaugural speeches, PhD and degree ceremonies
Inaugural speeches and PhD ceremonies will still take place in person, but with a maximum of 75 people in the room. See faculty communication for more information.

Distancing and face masks
Since 6 November 2021, it has once again been compulsory to wear a face mask if you are moving around in the University buildings. You may remove the face mask once you are sitting at your work or study space. Distancing is not compulsory in University buildings, but try to distance from others anyway and avoid busy places. Be considerate of others.

Work from home
You are strongly urged to work from home where possible. Working from home and online meetings are once again the norm. Exceptions do apply for teaching, laboratory and other location-specific work. If you have to work at the office due to private circumstances, discuss this with your manager.

Student Well-being Week
The Student Well-being Week from 15 to 19 November will go ahead. Most of the activities are in small groups, and in these difficult times it is all the more important to meet up in person and think about mental health. So come along and join in!

Follow the basic rules
We strongly urge everyone to follow the basic rules from the Corona Check and the Campus Protocol:

  • Work from home where possible.
  • Get tested quickly if you have symptoms.
  • Do the Corona Check before you come to the University.
  • Socially distance by 1.5m if and when you can.
  • Do a self-test (lateral flow) twice a week, even if you don’t have any symptoms. You can order them free.
  • Our advice is: get vaccinated.

We will update the information in the coronavirus dossier (FAQs etc.) and the Campus Protocol on Monday 15 November to reflect these new measures that apply as of 13 November. These measures apply until Saturday 4 December.

Message from the Executive Board
On behalf of the Executive Board Rector Magnificus Hester Bijl has a few words of encouragement: ‘We realise that the stricter rules will be hard for many of us. Working from home will once again be the norm and the measures will ask a lot of our students and staff. Fortunately, much of our teaching will continue in person because we know how important this is for our students. If we all stick to the rules, we’ll be able to beat coronavirus together and once again meet up on campus.’

The government is holding a press conference on Friday 12 November and may announce new measures to prevent the spread of coronavirus. From the start of the pandemic, the University has followed the government guidance and the advice of the National Institute for Public Health and the Environment (RIVM). The University’s Central Crisis Team (CCT) will meet this weekend to discuss how any new measures will affect the University. As always, the CCT will inform management of the results of this meeting straight away. We will also inform students and staff as soon as possible. We will announce any new measures in an update on the website, and will also update the Campus Protocol.
 
We are doing all we can to ensure our teaching and research continues in the safest possible way for our students and staff. Our teaching is and will remain in person, as long as government policy permits. We are also in close contact with the Public Health Service (GGD). There are no known outbreaks of Covid on campus at the moment and the GGD sees no cause for concern. We do ask all students and staff to follow all the basic rules and to do the Corona Check before coming to the University.

During the press conference on 2 November, the government announced a number of new corona measures. These measures take effect from Saturday 6 November and we will be applying the new rules within the university from that date. These measures have been incorporated into a new version of the Campus Protocol.

The key points from the new protocol: 

  • With effect from 6 November 2021, everyone is again required to wear a face mask when moving around inside university buildings. Once you are seated at your work or study place, you can remove your face mask.
  • There has been a change to the advice to staff on working from home: we will work at home for at least half of our working hours. Staff and their managers will discuss together how this can best be arranged.
  • Restaurant facilities and the sports centre will remain open for staff and students. Visitors from outside the university will need to have a corona pass. See the website for the rules for visiting the sports centre.
  • The Hortus botanicus is only accessible with a corona pass.
  • Wherever possible, keep a safe distance from other people, avoid busy areas and travel only outside the rush hour.  

Please note: different rules may apply in the buildings of the LUMC. 

In addition, always do the Corona Check before coming to the University. If  you have a cold and/or other symptoms that could indicate corona and you test negative, please have consideration for the people around you and stay at home until the worst of the symptoms have passed. 

The government announced new measures on 2 November. These will apply from Saturday 6 November. The new measures will be incorporated in a new version of the Campus Protocol that will be published on 5 November.  

The main changes from 6 November are:  

  • It is once again compulsory to wear a face mask if you are moving around the University buildings. You may remove the face mask if you are sitting down. 

  • The advice on homeworking is: ‘work a least half of your working hours from home.’ The government also urged people to avoid busy places, keep a distance of 1.5m and where possible travel outside of peak times. 

As announced in our update from 20 September, the restrictions in higher education have now been eased. In short, this means a maximum group size no longer applies in our teaching rooms, face masks are no longer compulsory and 1.5m distancing is no longer necessary in our buildings.

The remaining rules for working and studying at the University can be found in a new version of the Campus Protocol. Read this thoroughly and make sure your colleagues, fellow students and guests are familiar with it. The University is only a safe place if everyone takes responsibility for their actions and thinks of others. For your own safety and that of others, stick to the rules, give other people space and respect one another’s boundaries.
 

At the press conference on Tuesday 14 September 2021, the government announced it would be easing various measures. This will make it possible to teach large groups on campus once again, something we are really pleased with. The measures will be eased on 25 September 2021. New rules on exams and quarantining will apply sooner. We will publish a new version of the Campus Protocol on 25 September, which includes all of the new measures.

The main changes as of 25 September are:

  • The maximum group size of 75 people will no longer apply in higher education. This means it will once again be possible to teach large groups. More of our teaching will gradually move on campus, in a good mixture of online, blended and hybrid forms. Each degree programme will make its own choices here. The degree programmes will inform their students if and when any changes will be made to their timetable.
  • Face masks will no longer be compulsory inside University buildings. Anyone who wishes to may, of course, still wear one. Lecturers may also ask their students to wear a face mask during a lecture or tutorial.
  • The advice on working from home will change: we should work from home if we can and at the office if we need to. Staff should discuss with their managers how to give shape to this.
  • Events will no longer have a maximum capacity, except for those events that do not have allocated seats. Then a maximum of 75% of the regular number of guests will be allowed.
  • Catering services in the buildings of educational institutions whose target group is students and staff (canteens, for instance) will not need to check whether people have a covid certificate, so they will be open to all.

Please note: other rules may apply in the LUMC buildings. The LUMC will let you know as soon as possible which measures will apply to its teaching and from when.

Maximum group size at exams 
As of 20 September, the limits to group sizes at exams will no longer apply. Neither will the 1.5m distancing rule. This means that from 20 September all exams can proceed as normal. Students will hear from their degree programme if this means a change to their exams.

Quarantine rules for travel
As of 22 September 2021, the quarantine rules for travel to the Netherlands will change. Read more about this on the Government website. If you are arriving from abroad, do the Quarantine Travel Check to see which rules apply to you. If this check tells you to quarantine at home, you may not come into the University during your quarantine.

Safety and responsibility
We are pleased that large lectures can go ahead once again and ask everyone to keep these as safe as possible for all. Give people space, take care and respect others if they are wearing a face mask or ask you to keep your distance.

In addition, always do the Corona Check before coming to the University and take a free self-test (rapid antigen test) twice a week. Read here what to do if your self-test is positive. We also advise you to get the vaccination. To make an appointment in Leiden contact GGD Hollands-Midden and in The Hague GGD Haaglanden.

If you test positive for coronavirus, we could like you to report this to us. Students can inform their study adviser and staff can inform their manager. To find out why we ask this and what we do with the information, read here.

New version of the Campus Protocol 
In the Campus Protocol you will find all the measures that apply in our buildings and to our students and staff. We have just released a new version of the Protocol, which includes all the measures that have been removed or changed since 30 August. Read the Protocol carefully and make sure any guests or new colleagues are aware of it. To the Campus Protocol  

Also follow this updates page: this is the first place to find information when the government measures change. 

Information on ventilation 
It is well known that ventilation is very important in combatting the virus, particularly in closed areas where a lot of people come together. Ensuring that our buildings are well ventilated is one of our continuing priorities. All teaching areas within the University are ventilated in line with RIVM requirements. It is important to open windows in work areas and meeting rooms. You can find a detailed explanation of the ventilation systems in the Campus Protocol or here

Press conference on 14 September
A press conference will be held on 14 September, and the outgoing government may announce that it is removing or changing its Covid measures. We will spend the days that follow this press conference looking into how any changes will affect our students and staff. Watch this page for the latest updates. 

New version of the Corona Check
The government’s rules on when to quarantine have changed. They now take into consideration whether you have already been vaccinated (once or twice) and/or have recently been infected with coronavirus. For more information see the government’s Quarantine Check

The Leiden University Corona Check has been updated to reflect thi. Do the Corona Check every time you want to come to the University, and stay at home if the check tells you to.

What to do if your self-test is positive
As a preventive measure we are asking our students and staff to do a self-test (rapid antigen test) twice per week. If the result is positive, you should do two things:

  • Get tested by the Municipal Public Health Service (GGD) to confirm the result: make an appointment at coronatest.nl or call 0800-1202. Stay at home until you have the result of the GGD test.
  • Inform the GGD Schools Team of your positive self-test result by calling 085-0782876 (open daily 9:00-17:00). The GGD will advise you what to do, and a separate GGD team will monitor the infection rate at educational institutions and take any necessary steps.

As of Monday 30 August 2021, Leiden University is easing the restrictions, as announced by the government on 13 August 2021. We are pleased to be gradually returning to normal, but want our research and work to be carried out in a safe and responsible way. We have therefore incorporated the eased restrictions in our new Campus Protocol. Read the protocol before coming to the campus.

The key points from the new protocol are:

  • As of 30 August 2021, you must once again wear a face mask if you are moving around the University buildings. You may remove the face mask once you are sitting at your work or study space. 
  • As a preventive measure, we are asking our students and staff to take a self-test twice a week or at least on the days when you come to the University. Students and staff at our university can order free self-tests from Zelftestonderwijs.nl.
  • Do the Corona Check before you come to the University. If you have cold symptoms, stay at home and get tested.
  • If you test positive for coronavirus, please notify us. Students should inform their study adviser and staff members their manager. 
  • One-and-a-half-metre distancing is no longer compulsory in our buildings, in neither our offices nor our teaching rooms. However, it is advisable to keep some distance from others wherever possible.
  • It is important to make sure there is plenty of fresh air in our buildings. All teaching rooms at the University can be ventilated according to the requirements of the RIVM and the Buildings Decree. This is nearly always centrally regulated via mechanical ventilation systems that are switched on in the morning. Some workspaces and meeting rooms, in older buildings in particular, do not have mechanical ventilation systems. This makes it important to open the windows.
  • Leave the building as soon as your lecture, tutorial or practical has ended, in order to make room for other students.
  • If you have been to the University and test positive for Covid shortly afterwards, please inform the people you were in contact with as soon as possible (including fellow students and colleagues), so they can take the necessary measures.

Test in the weekend
Alongside self-tests, we advise our students and staff to also get a PCR test with the Municipal Health Service (GGD) in the weekend. You can do so even if you do not have any symptoms. PCR tests are more reliable than self-tests. To make an appointment, go to www.coronatest.nl.

Returning from abroad
The University follows the government’s quarantine rules; you must quarantine if you have returned from a high-risk area. See www.rijksoverheid.nl.

Vaccinations
We encourage everyone to get the Covid vaccine. The GGD is also offering a walk-in vaccination service for your first vaccination. Students and staff in Leiden can do so via GGD Hollands-Midden and students and staff in The Hague via GGD Haaglanden.

The 1.5-metre distancing rule at the University is to be lifted. The government announced this at a press conference on the current coronavirus measures on 13 August. From 30 August, the distancing rule will no longer apply in MBO (intermediate vocational education), HBO (higher vocational education) and universities.   

We are pleased that the situation is beginning to return to normal, but do want this return to be safe and gradual. How exactly to implement the latest measures is something we are now discussing with the faculties and the Association of Universities in the Netherlands (VSNU). At present, we are assuming the following: 

  • The 1.5-metre distancing measure will be lifted within the University from 30 August.
  • The campus will fully re-open for teaching from that date.
  • However, a maximum of 75 students per lecture hall will apply. Our degree programmes are currently working out how to give shape to this. For further details please see the information provided by your degree programme.
  • This maximum number also applies to exams, degree ceremonies and all other activities in our buildings.
  • From 30 August, you will need to wear a face mask when moving around our buildings. You can remove this once you are at your desk or study space.
  • With the exception of staff in teaching or teaching support roles, all staff are still expected to work from home. If you have a good reason to come to the office, discuss this first with your manager. 
  • You will still need to use the booking system for the University Libraries. Check the the library website before your visit for the latest news.

Please note: we will be working out the details over the next week or so. Watch this page and those of your faculty and degree programme for further information. In principle, these measures will remain in force for the first teaching block of the new academic year.

Safe reopening

The University will only be safe if everyone behaves responsibly. We urge our students and staff to follow the guidelines and precautionary measures to prevent the spread of coronavirus. This means, for example: 

  • We encourage everyone to get vaccinated. The Municipal Public Health Service (GGD) is offering a walk-in vaccination service for your first vaccination. Students and staff in Leiden can go to GGD Hollands-Midden, students and staff in The Hague can go to GGD Haaglanden.
  • Stay at home and get tested if you have cold symptoms. 
  • Always do the Corona Check before you come to the University
  • Get tested if you have been in contact with someone with Covid. 
  • As a preventive measure, take a self-test twice a week. Students and staff at our university can order self-tests free of charge via Zelftestonderwijs.nl.

What to do if you test positive for Covid:

  • If you test positive for coronavirus, we would like you to report this to us. If you are a student, please inform your study adviser; if you are a member of staff, please inform your manager. Read more
  • If you have been to the University and you test positive for Covid shortly afterwards, please inform the people you were in contact with as soon as possible (including fellow students or colleagues), so they can quickly take the necessary measures. 

On Friday evening 13 August there will be another press conference by the demissionary Cabinet on the current corona situation and possible changes to the corona measures. We expect that a decision will be taken regarding working from home and about the 1 .5-metre distancing measure in education. We hope that from the new academic year there will be more opportunities for us to offer on-campus education and to work more in university premises - while still observing the need for safety. We are already preparing for this. In the week of 16 August we will be discussing what the consequences are for our students and staff of the decisions and advice that the Cabinet may announce. 

We will inform everyone about any new situation as quickly as possible.

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