Amman- 17 March 2020
Minister of Higher Education Touq presides an emergency meeting with the Presidents of Public Jordanian universities
On Monday March 16, 2020, the Minister of Higher Education and Scientific Research, Dr. Mohiuddin Touq presided over an emergency meeting with the Presidents of public Jordanian universities in addition to the International Islamic Science University, in the presence of the directors of computer and information technology centers, and e-learning centers, to discuss all measures to ensure the continuity of the educational process in Jordanian universities in the light of a decision of The Council of Ministers to suspend studies in educational institutions, including universities and colleges, from Sunday morning 3/15/2020 for a period of two weeks.
The meeting reviewed the readiness of universities in the field of distance education, whether related to educational content, or electronic platforms, or training of faculty members, and all attendees agreed to implement the following procedures in all public Jordanian universities:
First: With regard to the tenure of members of the teaching and administrative staff, it was decided the following:
1) The official working hours for all university employees will be from (8) eight AM until (3) three PM.
2) With regard to faculty members, the president of the university, vice-presidents, deans of colleges, heads of departments, directors of various scientific and research centers of the faculty will continue working for the rest of the faculty, while the rest of the faculty members will complete their work remotely, including uploading their lessons and lectures to Educational platforms, with the need to maintain telephone and electronic communication with them, except in special cases where the presence of a faculty member is required to be present at the university.
3) With regard to the schedule of the members of the administrative body, the working hours of each of: the directors of the various departments and units, the Presidency Office, the offices of the deans, and a sufficient number of financial affairs and public services employees, and all employees of computer centers and e-learning shall be present on campus during working hours from 8:00 AM to 3:00 PM. Regarding to the rest of employees, 20% of them will continue working alternatively on campus and the rest of them (80%) will work remotely from home so that the work continues to be done as planned and on time. Note that those 20% are changeable among the employees. Pregnant women employees and mothers of children under 12 are excluded from this.
4) What is included in items (2, 3) of the first above will be applied according to the legislation in force in each university.
Second: With regard to the continuation of the educational process at the university, it was agreed on the following:
1) All universities should apply the e-learning system, distance learning and use all available means to achieve this, and start working to train all faculty members to use the available electronic means, with the need to work as quickly as possible to ensure the ability and readiness of the technological structure of each university, and develop it.
2) Immediately start preparing the electronic content necessary for all study courses in a manner consistent with the criteria for implementing the e-learning system and distance learning.
3) Giving priority in preparing academic courses and downloading them electronically for the subjects of students expected to graduate at the end of the current semester, and setting next Sunday 22/3/2020 as a deadline to start teaching these courses provided that the courses of the rest of the levels are gradually included. Those are evaluated at each stage and the work should include evaluating the experience, drawing lessons and improving the process.
4) With regard to medical and dental students in the clinical phase (practical training), a committee has been formed from the deans of medical colleges in the six Jordanian universities headed by the Dean of the Faculty of Medicine at the University of Jordan to agree on setting a mechanism to continue the practical training for students of these colleges with a focus on graduate students, then the students for the rest of the years.
5) With regard to students of the Faculties of Engineering, Architecture, and Arts, a committee of the deans of these faculties was formed under the chairmanship of the Dean of the College of Engineering at Yarmouk University to agree on a mechanism to follow up graduating students to complete their graduation projects.
6) Regarding the examinations, a later meeting will be held to agree on setting up a mechanism for holding these exams and announcing them to the students if the current health status continues, God Forbid.
7) Regarding the discussion of Masters Theses of graduate students, it was agreed to continue discussing these theses, provided that the student attends only with the discussion committee, and if this is not possible, the discussion is done via remote communication (SKYPE).
8) Al-Balqa Applied University will hold practical exams for its students on the announced date, given the small number of students participating in each session of these exams.
9) With regard to international students studying in these universities, whoever wishes to remain in Jordan will abide by is applied to Jordanian students, and whoever wishes to leave the Kingdom, each university will take the appropriate decision with the possibility of considering it incomplete in the courses of this semester.
Third: Following-up and ensuring continuity
1) Forming a crisis cell in each university consisting of a maximum of (6-7) members headed by the president of the university concerned, provided that these cells are continuously and directly linked to the Minister of Higher Education and Scientific Research over a period of 24 hours.
2) The necessity for each university to define executive procedures (SOPs) to deal with any urgent issue in the future (for example, the continuation of the suspension of working hours in universities until after the next two weeks, God forbid).
3) The need to fully comply with the instructions issued by the Ministry of Health to limit the spread of the virus and to circulate these instructions to the largest possible number of faculty members and students by using various electronic means.
4) Allowing students to enter the campus only in special and specific cases such as: contacting health centers inside the university, or submitting the necessary documents and guarantees to cultural advisors.
It should be noted that the Ministry of Higher Education and Scientific Research will also circulate these procedures to private universities and colleges to work according to their content.
May God protect our dear Jordan and its people from all-evil.
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