Residential Practice in COVID
Moving the Workforce to be Remote
In a residential setting, there exist staff across many disciplines including childcare, medical, recreation, social work, psychology, safety, and food service. When there is a need for social distancing, as many staff as possible will be asked to work remotely. Decisions about, and plans for, staff working remotely should be made jointly between program senior leadership and Human Resources, to ensure business as usual to the best extent possible. When considering which staff need not work from the office, an agency should consider mandated staff to child ratios, as well as potential adjustments to these ratios from the State based on the status of the pandemic; whose job can be carried out through programs such as telehealth, and whose job function is considered to be essential to the day-to-day operations of the residential program solely in person. Staff who provide for the daily basic needs of the children on campus as they relate to shelter, feeding and safety must be present at work in order to carry out their roles. These staff are considered essential workers. Standard letters can be written for these workers to have on their person while traveling to and from work in order to alert any law enforcement of their need to attend work. All staff who are able to provide their support and services to children through virtual means should be part of the remote workforce. For example, psychologists who provide mental health services can utilize telehealth, and youth coaches who support education and vocational goals can also provide their support virtually.
It is important to ensure that supervisors closely monitor the work completed by their staff who are working remotely, including mandated contacts (which may increase) as well as timely documentation. Staff should complete monthly to-do lists and weekly work plans to convey to their supervisors how they complete all typical deliverables of their job functions. These plans can be utilized during task-oriented supervision so that supervisors can ensure that all mandated work is completed.
Human Resources should review all staff agreements related to remote work prior to dissemination and following signatures by all staff. Templates can be used to guide this work, including for Remote Work Guidelines, Agreement for Remote Work in Support of Social Distancing, Remote Work Plan, Sample Remote Work Plan, Sample Remote Weekly Calendar and Monthly To-Do List, as well as Supervisory Tip Sheets for remote and for non-remote staff [2 links are missing here, that are below]. The Agreement for Remote Work in Support of Social Distancing and Remote Work Plan will be submitted to Human Resources. Weekly calendars and to-do lists will be submitted directly to supervisors each week and be utilized along with supervisory tip sheets to ensure best practice is maintained.
Flexible Workplace (JCCA)
Remote Work Guidelines
Agreement for Remote Work in Support of Social Distancing
Remote Work Plan
Plan for Remote Work and Office Coverage
Sample Remote Weekly Calendar and To-Do List
Supervisory Practice Tip Sheet
Remote Supervisory Tip Sheet