The University of Cape Town (UCT) is writing to inform you of the guidelines that have been developed with regard to specific staffing-related matters during the COVID-19 pandemic.
The university will continue to work remotely during stage four and will advise in future if and when this position changes.
Guidelines on staffing matters
We have developed guidelines that have been informed by the government’s strategy on social distancing, UCT’s vision for 2030, institutional strategies for financial and social sustainability, and labour relations prescripts.
If you need clarity on a specific issue please email the Director: HR Client Services, Mr Zaheer Ally, or phone him on 083 632 2271.
A number of queries have arisen in respect of the research enterprise. The UCT executive and researchers are continuing their joint efforts to ensure the stability and continuity of the research enterprise.
We have identified four broad categories of work segmentation to ensure operational continuity:
These four categories help to provide a conceptual framework for handling staffing-related matters.
We have drafted HR guidelines to assist on staffing matters and are providing them as a series of Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs). The FAQs address the following areas:
For issues related to the COVID-19 Temporary Employee-Employer Relief Scheme (TERS) and UIF claims, email Margie Tainton, or call her on 021 650 3028 or 084 582 6461.
This audio newsbyte from the University of Cape Town (UCT) serves to update you on the progress made with remote teaching for undergraduate students.
UCT is providing laptops on loan to eligible students. Delivery of these laptops began on 22 April and is expected to be completed by 8 May.
Deals to provide data bundles to all students have been signed with Cell C, MTN, Telkom and Vodacom, who have also agreed to zero-rate certain important UCT sites. The list of zero-rated sites is available on the ICTS website.
All online learning offerings are asynchronous – the pre-recorded lectures and study materials will be available in Vula, so students will not miss out on any learning. Course conveners will also be flexible in terms of submissions of work. The deadline to make changes in your curriculum has been changed from 8 May to 29 May.
The university is looking into the delivery of printed materials and USB drives for those students who cannot access the internet. 11 May has been set as the start date for distribution.
The UCT Call Centre and Referral System (CARES) is a new support tool being developed to provide student support. Your queries can be directed to firstname.lastname@example.org.
The process of rebuilding South Africa post-COVID-19 will require energy, creativity, commitment and resilient minds – all qualities that you can find in University of Cape Town (UCT) students, staff and alumni. As stakeholders and supporters of UCT, we have a privilege and a responsibility to help build that future now.
Upon hearing about the outbreak of the pandemic in South Africa, the UCT executive set up the COVID-19 UCT Emergency Fund to assist in the fight against the virus and its impact on the university community. So far, this fund has helped with needs such as:
The laptops alone have incurred a total cost of about R16.4 million.
When the lockdown is lifted and students and staff start returning to campus, the COVID-19 UCT Emergency Fund will help to provide for other needs, such as personal protective equipment (PPE) to ensure their safety.
Your support now will help to ensure that UCT continues to play an important role in the growth of South Africa.
UCT Vice-Chancellor Professor Mamokgethi Phakeng has committed 20% of her salary to the COVID-19 UCT Emergency Fund for a three-month period. This is above and beyond her regular monthly donation of 10% of her salary to the Mamokgethi Phakeng Scholarship Fund and her contributions towards her Adopt-A-Learner education trust and other initiatives.
The university is equally grateful to others who share the vice-chancellor’s commitment to higher education, including UCT Chancellor Dr Precious Moloi-Motsepe who, late last month, announced the donation of R5 million by the Motsepe Foundation.
The donations barometer – which currently stands at R6.8 million – and donor acknowledgements are available on the Development and Alumni Department website.
The COVID-19 UCT Emergency Fund demonstrates solidarity and a strong commitment to supporting the most vulnerable members of the UCT community.
UCT invites you to pledge your support today.
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NoDerivatives 4.0 International License.
Please view the republishing articles page for more information.
Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19) is a global pandemic that caused President Cyril Ramaphosa to declare a national disaster in South Africa on 15 March. This was followed by the implementation of a national lockdown, which has been in effect since midnight on 26 March and has recently been extended to 30 April. The intention of this drastic measure is to “flatten the curve” and contain the spread of the coronavirus to enable healthcare workers to more effectively treat those affected.
UCT is taking the threat of infection in our university community extremely seriously, and this page will be updated regularly with the latest COVID-19 information.
Getting credible, evidence-based, accessible information and recommendations relating to COVID-19
The Department of Medicine at the University of Cape Town and Groote Schuur Hospital, are producing educational video material for use on digital platforms and in multiple languages. The information contained in these videos is authenticated and endorsed by the team of experts based in the Department of Medicine. Many of the recommendations are based on current best evidence and are aligned to provincial, national and international guidelines. For more information on UCT’s Department of Medicine, please visit the website.
To watch more videos like these, visit the Department of Medicine’s YouTube channel.
As the COVID-19 crisis drags on and evolves, civil society groups are responding to growing and diversifying needs – just when access to resources is becoming more insecure, writes UCT’s Prof Ralph Hamann.03 Jul 2020 - 6 min read Republished
The Covid-19 crisis has reinforced the global consequences of fragmented, inadequate and inequitable healthcare systems and the damage caused by hesitant and poorly communicated responses.24 Jun 2020 - >10 min read Opinion
Our scientists must not practise in isolation, but be encouraged to be creative and increase our knowledge of the needs of developing economies, write Professor Mamokgethi Phakeng, vice-chancellor of UCT, and Professor Thokozani Majozi from the University of the Witwatersrand.09 Jun 2020 - 6 min read Republished
South Africa has been recognised globally for its success in flattening the curve, which came as a result of President Ramaphosa responding quickly to the crisis, writes Prof Alan Hirsch.28 Apr 2020 - 6 min read Republished
In an email to the UCT community, Vice-Chancellor Professor Mamokgethi Phakeng said:
“COVID-19, caused by the virus SARS-CoV-2, is a rapidly changing epidemic. [...] Information [...] will be updated as and when new information becomes available.”
We are continuing to monitor the situation and we will be updating the UCT community regularly – as and when there are further updates. If you are concerned or need more information, students can contact the Student Wellness Service on 021 650 5620 or 021 650 1271 (after hours), while staff can contact 021 650 5685.