Coronavirus (COVID-19) FAQs
As Northeast responds to coronavirus (COVID-19), we understand there are and will be many questions. In addition to the questions and answers given below, please check our recent announcements for the latest information.
Are there restrictions for visitors to be on a Northeast campus?
All campuses of Northeast Community College are open for business and all services are available either on-site or via virtual connections. All buildings that have classes and events scheduled in them will be open based on the schedules for each building. Call 402-371-2020 to reach an office at Northeast.
How is decision-making about the Northeast response to the COVID-19 virus situation being made?
Decisions related to the Northeast response to COVID-19 are being made based on guidance provided by the public health districts in the college’s 20-county service area, the State of Nebraska Department of Health and Human Services, and Center for Disease Control recommendations. A Northeast Recovery Team meets regularly to provide recommendations for the administration based on information from these sources.
Will I be required to wear a face mask or face shield?
Faculty, staff, students, and visitors are encouraged to wear facemasks or shields in all college buildings at all locations. College employees may request, but not require, that facemasks or shields be worn in specific offices, classrooms, or college spaces
What is the Emergency Broadband Benefit Program?
The Emergency Broadband Benefit Program is a Federal Communications Commission (FCC) program that provides a temporary discount on monthly broadband bills for qualifying low-income households. If your household is eligible, you can receive:
- Up to a $50/month discount on your broadband service and associated equipment rentals
- Up to a $75/month discount if your household is on qualifying Tribal lands
- A one-time discount of up to $100 for a laptop, tablet, or desktop computer (with a co-payment of more than $10 but less than $50)
Only one monthly service discount and one device discount is allowed per household. To receive the connected device discount, consumers need to enroll in the EBB Program with a participating provider that offers connected devices (not all service providers offer device discounts). The service provider will provide the discount to the consumer.
The program will end when the fund runs out of money, or six months after the Department of Health and Human Services declares an end to the COVID-19 health emergency, whichever is sooner.
Visit https://getemergencybroadband.org/ for more information.
Are face coverings required on campus?
Faculty, staff, students, and visitors are encouraged to wear face masks or shields in all college buildings at all locations. College employees may request, but not require, that face masks or shields be worn in specific offices, classrooms, or college spaces. On the Norfolk campus, masks are available for purchase in the Hawks Shop, while supplies last.
If I experience COVID-19 symptoms or if I was exposed to someone who tested positive for COVID-19 what should I do?
If you are feeling ill or experience any of these symptoms or if you have been directly exposed to someone who has tested positive for COVID-19, do not come to campus and contact your healthcare provider for additional guidance. During the fall and spring terms, you can schedule an appointment with Northeast’s Student Health Nurse by calling (402) 844-7176. During the summer term, students are encouraged to contact an off-campus health care provider if they are experiencing COVID-19 symptoms. Make sure to inform your instructors if you will be absent from class due COVID-19 symptoms or diagnosis. Please refer to the current standard operating procedures, positive case protocols addendum for return to class exclusion criteria for fully vaccinated and unvaccinated individuals.
Are classes being offered face-to-face?
Northeast Community College has announced a return to regular college operations beginning with the Fall 2021 academic semester. Additional information about course delivery methods can be found here.
I am an enrolled student and struggling due to COVID-19, what should I do?
We are here to support you during these challenging times. Whether you are struggling emotionally, academically, or financially, we want to know and will do our best to connect you with resources to assist you. We are here to support you during these challenging times. Whether you are struggling emotionally, academically, or financially, we want to know and will do our best to connect you with resources to assist you. Complete the Request Assistance Form if you are in need of support.
- All textbooks are shipped via UPS and an email will be sent with tracking information once the order has shipped. A $5 shipping code is currently available on the Hawks Shop website for all orders over $50.00. Standard shipping prices are applied for any order less than $50 or students may choose to pick up in-store.
Are there any travel protocols?
Travel Restriction Protocols for Employees and Students expired June 30, 2021. Travelling parties are responsible for confirming restrictions and requirements of their destination prior to leaving, and ensuring they follow such instructions should they proceed with the trip.
What types of leave, specific to COVID-19, are available during this time?
- Leaves available:
- Sick Leave Communicable Disease (Employee is ill or quarantined due to COVID-19)
- Only regular part-time and full-time employees that accrue sick leave benefits are eligible to use this leave.
- Sick Leave Communicable Disease (Employee is ill or quarantined due to COVID-19)
Supervisors: Please monitor your employees’ timesheets/leave reports accordingly
Paid Leave Codes should only be documented on timesheets/leave reports based on the normal working schedule for the employee
- Leaves available:
What should I do if I have an underlying health condition, or I am immunosuppressed and want to, or am advised by my healthcare provider to stay home?
Employees’ health is our top priority! Employees should consult with their health care provider and follow the provider’s directive.
Employees should contact their supervisor to coordinate leave and/or telecommuting options. Human Resources is also available to assist employees with ADA requests and accommodations.
I do not have an underlying health condition, but I want to avoid possible exposure/infection. Do I have telecommuting options?
Employees’ health and safety are the top priority at Northeast. If a healthy employee chooses to work from home to avoid possible exposure, they are expected to make arrangements with their supervisor.
Supervisors have the right to approve or deny an employee’s request to work remotely. Working from home may not be applicable in all circumstances due to the nature of the job, the equipment required, or for other reasons determined by the supervisor.
The supervisor will work closely with their employee regarding their expectations for the employee’s work schedule, tasks, deadlines, and communication expectations (available by email, text, phone) during the period of telecommuting.
What should I do if I develop symptoms consistent with COVID-19?
To limit the potential for exposure to others, if an employee has a fever greater than 100.4 degrees Fahrenheit and a cough, the employee should not come to work and should take these actions:
- Notify your supervisor that you are ill and will be taking sick time; the HR Office is available to assist with qualifying FMLA medical events.
- Seek medical advice from your primary care provider (please call ahead, or utilize telehealth options).
- Please refer to the current standard operating procedures, positive case protocols addendum for return to class exclusion criteria for fully vaccinated and unvaccinated individuals.
Can I be sent home if I am sick? Only for flu-related illnesses? What if I don’t think I have a flu-related illness?
Northeast is required to maintain a safe and healthy environment and has broad discretion over when and where an employee is to work. For this reason, employees may be sent home if they are sick.
Of greatest concern is an employee with a fever greater than 100.4 degrees Fahrenheit, and who exhibits cough and respiratory symptoms; this employee is likely to be sent home. Other symptoms (coughing, sneezing) may also be of concern.
To determine whether someone has the flu, or flu-related illness, supervisors will follow the appropriate guidelines from the CDC.
I am on the Northeast employee health plan. Are there any changes to coverage, or direction I need to know related to COVID-19?
Please consult the BC/BS link on the COVID-19 resources section of the Northeast.edu website.
A member of my household is ill. Should I come to work?
Please stay home until you can confirm with your healthcare provider that the member of your household is no longer contagious. Additionally, you must be free of any signs/symptoms of illness upon your return to the workplace.
What if I’m sick when working from home?
Employees who are unable to work due to illness should utilize sick time and report their absence to their supervisor. Working from home is not intended to be used in place of sick time when an employee is ill. Please work closely with your supervisor regarding expectations for reporting time off and/or options for handling work responsibilities while you are ill.
When can I return to work/remote work, if I have had COVID-19?
Employees who have been home because they screened positive for COVID-19, or who tested positive to COVID-19 can return to work after these things have happened:
- They have had no fever for a least 24 hours (that is one full day of no fever without the use of medicine that reduces fever) AND
- Other symptoms have improved (for example, their cough or shortness of breath have improved) AND
- At least 10 days have passed since their symptoms first appeared.
- The employee will be provided specific instructions by their healthcare provider and local public health clinicians based on the most current CDC and Nebraska PHD guidance.
- Please be mindful that this guidance continues to evolve and may change several times during the course of the upcoming weeks and months.
- This guidance is applicable for employees working remotely or on College premises.
Can my supervisor make a temporary change to my job assignments so that the College can continue the essential functions during a communicable disease outbreak?
Yes, your supervisor has the right to temporarily reassign employees to work outside of their usual responsibilities to the extent they are qualified and can safely perform the work. While this situation may not be ideal, it is important that we are all willing to adjust our “normal” work in the event of an emergency. The College will notify employees who are designated to perform essential functions, as well as when and where they should report to work.
Can my supervisor make a temporary change to my assigned shift and/or assigned work schedule during a communicable disease outbreak?
Yes, your supervisor may temporarily adjust employees’ work schedules to meet operational demands, based on business needs and circumstances. These adjustments may be made on a case-by-case basis depending upon operational considerations. Your supervisor will work closely with you to discuss any changes to your assigned work schedule and any questions or concerns you may have with the changes.
Can my supervisor require me to work or remain at work during a public health emergency?
The College will work to balance the preferences of employees with guidance from the CDC and the Nebraska PHD, and the need to maintain business continuity. If an employee is unable to report to work as scheduled due to illness, or injury, the supervisor should follow the standard procedure regarding medical documentation.