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Ohio State University Extension


Flexibility of County Plans, In-Person Programming Exemptions

The university guidance is in alignment with what we had already anticipated: flexible remote work options through the end of spring semester, when it is likely we will be much further along with vaccinations. As such, I am reminding you that we already have an avenue for these flexible work arrangements and office coverage via our Return-to-Office plans that have been in effect since July. Each office is encouraged to continually review these in the context of local COVID-19 prevalence, local commissioner/administrator and Department of Health guidance, programmatic need, and appropriate employee accommodations.

This week, Governor DeWine identified a general reduction in hospitalizations and was optimistic about our ability to continue this trend with ongoing adherence to safety precautions and remaining vigilant in our efforts to protect ourselves and others – although he did remind us that the rate of infection is still much higher in most counties than is recommended by the CDC. We will be revisiting the guidance for RED counties over the next few weeks if we continue to see the improvement in numbers and the uptake of vaccinations. I thank you for your patience as we attempt to maintain the balance between safety and meeting the needs of our communities.

In-person program exemptions are continuing to be accepted by the review committee for those programs that require in-person attendance, are mandated to be in-person by the courts or other state agencies/organizations, or are not viable virtually due to internet inaccessibility. The in-person programming exemption link is available at

REMINDER: If you receive an approved exemption, you MUST take the Scarlet Canvas course. The intent is for this to be viewed BEFORE you perform the programming. It has become clear that many have failed to complete this training in the last few months. If you have an exemption in place and have not completed the training, it must be completed no later than January 31, 2021, or your supervisor will be notified and the exemption could be suspended. Visit the required training course webpage to complete the training as soon as possible.