Tag Archives: COVID-19

What Alert Level 3 will look like at UC

Kia ora koutou,

Yesterday the Prime Minister confirmed that Aotearoa New Zealand, except Auckland and Northland, will move to Alert Level 3 at 11.59pm tonight.

The keyword for us to remember while at this level is restrict. This means wear a face mask, scan wherever you go, keep a safe distance, and stay within your bubble. Read more here.

It’s been a while since we were at Alert Level 3 here in Ōtautahi Christchurch, so here’s everything you need to know about how UC will operate.

Access to campus

In line with Tertiary Education Commission (TEC) guidelines, the University’s Incident Management Team (IMT) have developed a process that will ensure safe access to campus for limited teaching and some research, as and where required, under Alert Level 3.

This process follows the message of, “Level 3 does not mean freedom, it means caution”, and so access to campus under Alert Level 3 will be strictly managed with Covid restrictions enforced.

  • Very limited teaching and research can occur on campus or in the field while we are at Alert Level 3. 
  • If a programme that you are part of is approved, the appropriate staff member will be in touch to advise you of the requirements and next steps.

In addition, postgraduate students are able to come onto campus to pick up essential work items. They will need to report to the Security Office, 114 Ilam Road to sign in.

To pick up work items you will need to:

  • wear a mask
  • observe physical distancing
  • have your Canterbury Card, so your postgraduate status can be confirmed
  • have a mobile phone on your person and provide your number to the Security team
  • be prepared to wait for access (it could take time as numbers are strictly limited onsite)
  • Once you’ve signed in, you will be escorted to your office to collect your required materials
  • You will need to report back to the Security Office to sign out, then leave campus immediately.

Access to campus to pick up items will be every day (including Saturday and Sunday) during daylight hours only from 8am – last departure from the Security Office at 5.30pm.

Restrictions at the Health Centre still apply while at Alert Level 3 – please call to make a booking as they unable to accept walk-ins.

Bubble management on campus

All teaching and other activities will be done remotely, where possible. However, if a class, workshop or lab that cannot be delivered online is granted permission to be held on campus, the number of people involved will be limited to 10 people or less.

Each of these groups is considered a separate “bubble” and must not interact with any other student or staff bubble.

Each bubble of 10 or less will be strictly managed to ensure appropriate infection control measures, such as physical distancing of 1 metre, and face mask wearing, are being met. If this applies to you, your lecturer will be in touch and will provide you with all the information you need to know.

Study spaces

There will be limited study spaces on campus for students who cannot do so from home and strict protocols will need to be followed. If you require this service or need more information, email ucprotect@canterbury.ac.nz.

Face coverings

Staff and students should bring face coverings with them, and wear them at all times while on campus. Face coverings should be worn when accessing services like UC Security, UC Health and in situations where physical distancing may be difficult.

Remember, there are a number of support services available:

If you need any support, you can reach out to any one of the services or contacts listed above.

Booking vaccinations

If you’re eligible to book your vaccine and haven’t already, visit www.BookMyVaccine.nz. To check when you are eligible to book, click here.
For information on the Covid-19 vaccination, follow this link.

If you have any questions about the University’s Covid-19 response, visit the University of Canterbury’s Covid information page, or email ucprotect@canterbury.ac.nz.

Two weeks ago, none of us expected to approach the mid-semester break in a lockdown, and it’s okay to not be at your best as a result. What is important is that you look after yourself and those around you.

Remember to check in with your friends and whānau with a quick message or call. Take some time to get fresh air, prioritise rest, and go easy on yourself – we’ve got this

Kia kaha,

Leanne Keenan
Incident Controller 

Covid-19 | Alert Level 4 update – online learning starts 23 Aug

Kia ora koutou,

Following the Prime Minister’s announcement at 3pm today, Aotearoa New Zealand will remain at Covid-19 Alert Level 4 until 11.59pm Tuesday 24 August.

You can keep yourself up-to-date with the latest Government information on Alert Level 4 here, and by watching the daily Government briefings.

All classes and assessments will be delivered online from Monday 23 August for the whole week, see below for further information.

Remember to check in with your friends and whānau over the weekend, either online or give them a call. It’s important to support each other and look after your own wellbeing as well. 

Access to campus and services
The University of Canterbury campus will remain closed until further notice.
Student accommodation and campus essential services, including the Health Centre, pharmacy and security are continuing to operate.

Please call to make a booking at the Health Centre as they are unable to accept walk-ins while we are under Alert Level 4.

Teaching and assessments – online from Monday 23 August

  • From Monday 23 August all teaching including lectures, tutorials, labs, workshops, assessments, tests etc will be delivered online only for the whole week. Check your course AKO | LEARN site for more details.
  • Postgraduate research students should check with their supervisory team on how to proceed with their research.
  • UC Library access will also remain online.
  • Students on placements, work integrated learning and practicums cannot participate face-to-face unless they are part of an essential service. In that case they should follow the protocols of the organisation they are placed with. If in doubt, contact your course coordinator.
  • Students registered with Equity and Disability Service will receive an email about test arrangements for the coming week.

Internet and devices for online learning

  • If you don’t have access to a device suitable for online study in your bubble, or you don’t have an internet connection (or one that’s reliable enough), please email ucprotect@canterbury.ac.nz with your full name, date of birth, student ID number, current physical address, contact phone number, and an outline of your situation.
  • Someone from UC will reach out to you on the phone number you’ve provided.

Text message scam alert

  • We’ve been alerted to a scam that is circulating via text message telling students they have tested positive for Covid-19.
  • The text purports to be sent from the student health centre at Lincoln University. If you receive this message, please delete it immediately.
  • Positive Covid-19 test results would be communicated directly by the Canterbury District Health Board (CDHB) and the Ministry of Health (MoH) only.

Mandatory mask wearing
A reminder it is now mandatory to wear masks in the following places:

  • Supermarkets, GP clinics, pharmacies, and other essential services.
  • Public transport, including in public transport transit buildings and taxis.

Health and wellbeing
Look after yourself and others in these uncertain times. Check out the online wellbeing hub, where there’s a wealth of handy information covering anxiety and stress and mind and body.

Support services
There are a number of support services available:

If you have any questions about the University’s Covid response, visit the University of Canterbury’s Covid information page, or email ucprotect@canterbury.ac.nz.

We have done this before, and we will get through this together. I encourage you to take some time for yourselves this weekend and do something you enjoy.

Kia kaha,

Iain MacPherson
Incident Controller

Covid-19 | Alert Level 4 information update

Kia ora koutou,

Aotearoa New Zealand is currently at Covid-19 Alert Level 4. You can keep yourself up-to-date with the latest Government information on Alert Level 4 here and by watching the 1pm Government briefings screening on TVNZ 1.

Following the announcement by the Prime Minster on Tuesday evening, the Vice-Chancellor activated the Incident Management Team and the Vice-Chancellor and Incident Controllers are the decision-making authority.

Access to campus and services
The University of Canterbury campus is currently closed until further notice.
Student accommodation and campus essential services, including the Health Centre, pharmacy and security are continuing to operate.

Please call to make a booking at the Health Centre as they are unable to accept walk-ins while we are under Alert Level 4.

Teaching and assessments

  • All classes, tests and assignments have been cancelled for the remainder of this week – from 18 to 20 August.
  • No assessments will be due this week, and any due next week will be available online or will be rescheduled. Check your course AKO | Learn site for detailed information on assessment changes.
  • All assessments and classes will be available online from Monday 23 August regardless of what alert level we are at.
  • If you become aware of classes continuing online this week please email ucprotect@canterbury.ac.nz with the class code.

Mandatory mask wearing
The Government announced this afternoon that mask wearing is now mandatory in the following places:

  • Supermarkets, GPs, pharmacies, and other essential services.
  • Public transport, including in public transport transit buildings and taxis.

Vaccination programme
The nationwide vaccination programme will continue from 8am tomorrow. If you have a vaccination appointment booked and have not received notice it has been changed, please turn up to your scheduled appointment.

People in groups, 1, 2, 3, and now group 4 aged 40+ years are able to book their Covid vaccination – check your eligibility and book your vaccine on the website https://app.bookmyvaccine.covid19.health.nz/

More information:
See UC’s Tuesday 17 August update on Tūpono | Insider’s Guide for information on:

  • Health and wellbeing resources
  • UC support services
  • Student accommodation
  • People at higher risk

If you have any questions about the University’s Covid response, visit the University of Canterbury’s Covid information page, or email ucprotect@canterbury.ac.nz.

We have done this before, and we will get through this together.

We’ll be back in touch tomorrow.

Kia kaha,

Iain MacPherson
Incident Controller