The Beacon

Faculties

Open Distance E-Learning

The National Council for Higher Education (NCHE), a body mandated to regulate the provision and conduct of Higher Education in Uganda, is desirous of implementing an emergency ODeL system for enabling the Higher Education training institutions to offer teaching and learning during the current lockdown.

The ODeL system of learning provision is globally recognized as a worthy mechanism for flexible learning. It has been observed that ODeL avails numerous benefits as a teaching and learning system, because it focuses on learners, and provides for continuous engagements between the instructor and learners as and when is desirable.

The University has successfully adopted the Open Distance E-Learning (ODEL) system to improve teaching and learning. This system is a blended way of teaching and learning which shall endorse continuous learning on and off campus.

To access the E-Learning platform, please go to TheBEE. To log into this platform, you shall be required to fill in your University Email address as Username and password created by the ICT Department.



Below are the Guidelines for Re-Opening Institutions given by the National Council for Higher Education (NCHE).

1.0 INTRODUCTION

Re-opening of institutions requires that guidelines are adhered to. Hereunder are guidelines for re-opening the concerned institutions so as to meet the required national Standard Operating Procedures (SOPs) for COVID-19 prevention in the health care facilities, teaching and learning activities as well as accommodation in the halls of residence/ hostels. Priority should be given to the students, staff and the communities they work in. 

2.0 GUIDELINES

2.1 General

Each Institution should form and operationalize a COVID-19 Task force committee. These committees will be mandated to manage COVID-19 issues and report to concerned authorities within the Institutions and also provide links between the Institutions and the districts. 

a) All Institutions should ensure that the designated teaching and accommodation facilities, as well as other amenities, conform to the MoH requirements for social distancing.

b) All students, staff and other persons entering the Institutions premises should be wearing face masks. Entry for other persons will be restricted.

c) All students and staff must be ready and willing to go through designated points of screening.

d) Prior to screening, students and staff will be required to wash hands and/or use an alcohol-based sanitizer.

e) Anyone with temperature of 37.6°C and above will be required to stay at the screening point for two more assessments. Such an individual will not be allowed to proceed into the Institutions or any building until cleared by the screening team.

f) All buildings, including students’ halls of residence/hostels, will have a hand washing unit, with soap or water already mixed with liquid soap.

g) Wearing of face masks should be done at all times – in lecture rooms, library, hostels or hospital.

h) Individuals are encouraged to have personal alcohol rub or alcohol-based sanitizer.

i) Regular hand washing and hygiene practices must be observed.

j) No hand shaking or hugging until the Ministry of Health guides otherwise.

k) Anyone with a cough or cold should stay at home until it resolves and should make an effort to inform management. 

1) Exercise social distancing where possible, and the clinical teams in the wards will guide on this during clinical placements.

m) Students coming from border districts will be subjected to screening before they are allowed into the Institutions as guided by MoH.

n) All Examination Boards should operate and follow the SOPs.

0) All transportation activities and facilities should observe the provided SOPs for transportation. 

2.2 Students (in addition to the above):

a) All students will be required to attend the initial COVID-19 training on their first days of reporting and other mandatory COVID-19 training on the Infection Prevention and Control Standard Operating Procedures. These trainings will be offered by the Institutional COVID-19 task committees.

b) All students will be required to come with not less than four reusable 2-layer cotton masks. A 50 ml alcohol rub will be initially supplied by the Institution. Each student will be required to refill their bottles when finished.

c) Students are advised to walk or use bicycles where possible.

d) Students should move with their identity cards at all times.

e) Students will have restricted movement during their time at the institution to prevent exposure to COVID-19 infections.

f) In keeping with the President’s directive, no congregational gatherings for fellowship, chapel or mosque prayers will be allowed.

g) Students will be expected to be at their places of residence and inside their rooms by 9.00 pm.

h) Occupancy in hostels should be in compliance with the MoH social distancing SOPs. 

2.3 Clinical students in addition to the above):

a) Clinical students should wear clinical coats/uniforms and/or aprons at all times during clinical placement. They are also required to have two Clinical coats/uniforms, aprons and scrubs respectively. Those will be left in designated rooms. No student will be allowed to take used Clinical coats/uniforms, aprons and scrubs in their halls of residence/hostels.

c) All institutions should provide central washing points for used Clinical coats/uniforms, aprons and scrubs.

d) Because of the prevailing curfew restricting movement after 9.00 pm, students on night call will not be allowed to go back home except if they stay in halls of residence/hostels within the Hospital premises. 

e) All students are expected to participate in ward rounds, clerkships and other clinical activities as determined by the clinical department.

f) For purposes of observing social distancing at the clinical/field placement, shift allocation should be practiced. 

2.4 Staff (in addition to 1 above) 

a) Staff sitting in congested offices where social distancing is not possible should consider having duty roster so that some staff work from home.

b) Teaching staff are expected to be exemplary to students in following measures to prevent COVID-19 infection. 

2.5 Others

a) Training (orientation) of staff on health guidelines and protocols will be provided.

b) In case of any person within the Institution is suspected/presents with COVID 19 signs and symptoms, the Institution MUST immediately notify the District COVID-19 Task Force.

c) Each Institution will secure two rooms where students can hang their clinical coats or scrubs (one for female students and another for males).

d) Sufficient cleaning materials for washrooms in all buildings and students’ hostels should be provided and cleaning of the same done frequently.

e) All Institutions being used for quarantine facilities should be evacuated and disinfected by MoH/District as soon as the pronouncement to re-open is made. Thereafter if any spaces/facilities are contaminated as a result of COVID-19, it should be disinfected (See Annex 1).

f) In case the Institution has a fully functional Clinic, it should be regularly disinfected.

g) Cleaning staff should be provided with hard-duty gloves and disposable gloves to the extent possible.

h) The Institution should provide extra cleaning of surfaces such as door handles, switches and laboratory worktops.

i) There is need for provision of continuous psycho social support to students and staff.

j) Constant supply of water throughout the Institution and students’ hostels.

k) Sensitization notices should be displayed on the noticeboards at Campuses and in the Hospitals.

1) Doors and windows to buildings and rooms will be kept open at all times to avoid unnecessary handling. 

m) A compliance inspection/monitoring team will inspect/monitor the institutions for compliance using the checklist for inspection/monitoring (See Annex 2).

n) Institutions that meet the requirements for re-opening after inspection will be issued with a Certificate of Compliance (See Annex 3). 

3.0 CONCLUSION

All stakeholders in Institutions undertaking health related training are called upon to implement these guidelines, and any other provided by H.E the President and MoH to prevent and control the spread of COVID-19 from time to time. The Governing Councils and Heads of Institutions are encouraged to consult relevant authorities whenever necessary.