One big problem with SUs calling for a minimum amount of guaranteed in-person teaching is that some staff members are unable to do any in-person teaching because of health conditions that put them at risk. So what do you do then?
Either you say those staff can't teach at all as they can't offer in-person teaching; or you say their modules must have in-person teaching provided by other members of staff. But other members of staff are a) already doing their own teaching and b) not necessarily specialist.
There are lots of other problems: what about students who can't attend because of risk assessments, or because they are self-isolating -- how do you propose that they catch up on the missed sessions? What about if staff suddenly have to self-isolate, so have to shift to online?
But the issue of staff who can't teach classes in-person creates a real immediate problem with making any promises & guarantees about minimum levels of in-person teaching. We're already stretched to offer what we are offering, and nobody is offering online because it's *easier*.
2-3 students in each of my in-person classes so far have been self-isolating & unable to attend. I am sure this will go up. Bristol SU wants 3 hrs minimum in-person teaching every week. Even at the current level, that's a lot of students I'd need to catch up with work every week.
I don't know why I bother, really: we've all said this over and over again. But people are unclear about it because they don't understand a) the amount of work online teaching actually entails b) university staff workloads (high) and conditions (declining).
But I mean: on our risk assessment, I think I'm right in saying that a pregnant member of staff who used public transport to get to work would be exempt from in-person teaching. I'm not sure SUs really want to wade into maternity employment law to challenge that...
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