COVID-19 Support for Academics

Leave Policies 

More information about these policies, including extensive FAQs, is available on the Academic Personnel website.

UC Emergency Paid Sick Leave (EPSL)

UCOP is offering all its employees, including represented employees, an additional 2021 allotment of Emergency Paid Sick Leave (EPSL) - available for use immediately.

UCOP’s 2021 EPSL is available to employees who are unable to work or telework for the reasons below, which include those specified in the original EPSL provisions and a few additions:

  • Reason 1: The employee is subject to a federal, state, or local quarantine or isolation order related to COVID 19.

  • Reason 2: The employee has been advised by a health care provider to self-quarantine due to concerns related to COVID-19.

  • Reason 3:

a) The employee is experiencing symptoms of COVID-19 and is seeking a medical diagnosis from a health care provider;

b) New: The employee has been exposed to COVID-19 and is seeking or awaiting the results of a diagnostic test for, or a medical diagnosis of, COVID-19;

c) New: The University has requested that the employee obtain a diagnostic test for, or a medical diagnosis of, COVID-19, and the employee is seeking or awaiting those results;

d) New: The employee is obtaining immunization related to COVID-19; or

e) New: The employee is recovering from an injury, disability, illness, or condition related to obtaining immunization related to COVID-19.

  • Reason 4: The employee is caring for an individual who is either subject to a federal, state, or local quarantine or isolation order related to COVID-19 or who has been advised by a health care provider to self-quarantine due to concerns related to COVID-19.

  • Reason 5: The employee is caring for their child whose school or place of care has closed (or whose child care provider is unavailable) for reasons related to COVID-19.

  • Reason 6: The employee is experiencing any other substantially similar condition specified by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS).

Full-time employees may take up to 80 hours of EPSL, while those who are part-time may take up to the two-week equivalent. As before, employees will receive their regular rate of pay during EPSL. Please read the Frequently Asked Questions on page 2 of this document from UCOP if you need additional information, or contact your HR Business Partner.

UC Expanded Paid Administrative Leave (EPAL)

UC’s Expanded Paid Administrative Leave provides academic appointees with 128 hours of paid administrative leave for use when unable to work or telework because of: 

  1. Appointee’s own COVID-19 related illness or that of a family member

  2. Appointee directed not to come to worksite for COVID-19 related reasons and/or worksite has COVID-19 related remote work program or is under shelter in place order and it is not operationally feasible for employee to work remotely 

  3. COVID-19 related school or daycare closure requires appointee to be at home with child/dependent and it is not operationally feasible for appointee to work remotely or in conjunction with childcare commitment 

Can be taken intermittently, recorded in hours, and must be used no later than June 30, 2021. 

Leaves and Workload Modifications for Ladder-Rank Faculty

Ladder-rank faculty can use leave or arrange for temporary workload modifications for caregiving purposes. Learn more


Academic Supports

Campus reviewers in the future will understand that the COVID-19 pandemic had a prolonged disruptive impact on research and teaching, and will interpret records of review periods including the pandemic accordingly. Make sure that you discuss the consequences of the pandemic on your record in your self-evaluative statements.

One-time Offset in Merit Review

For ladder-rank faculty with clear evidence of significant loss of productivity due to COVID-19 (including the loss of childcare or other changes in family/personal obligations), such that they cannot earn a full-step advance, a half-step offset will be provided as a one-time measure so they receive a full-step advance or the equivalent thereof. Learn more

COVID-19 “Stop the Clock"

Ladder-rank faculty can request a one-semester or one-year extension of the tenure clock due to COVID-19 related disruptions including the loss of childcare or other changes in family/personal obligations. Learn more

New: Interim COVID-Related Dependent Care Modified Duties for Ladder-Rank Faculty

Ladder-rank faculty can request temporary duty modifications for COVID-related dependent care obligations. Learn more    

New: Teaching Support from Faculty Emeriti

A number of active Berkeley faculty emeriti are available during the spring 2021 semester on a voluntary basis to support faculty with teaching this semester, either by teaching one or more guest lectures, or providing other types of support. Information about their department, areas of expertise, availability, and how to contact them is viewable on this spreadsheet. For questions, or to refer additional emeriti to participate in this program, please contact Sigrid Mueller, Program Manager for the Berkeley Emeriti Academy (


Dependent Care Needs

Berkeley CareBubbles

Berkeley CareBubbles is a parent-to-parent resource to help UC Berkeley community members meet their child care needs during the Covid-19 pandemic. Find other Cal families looking to trade childcare, share tutors, create bubbles, and more. Visit for more information.

Rec Sports Educational Enrichment & Out-of-School Time Programs

The Rec Sports Department has developed three unique youth program offerings for the children of UC Berkeley faculty and staff members. These engaging programs meet and adhere to City of Berkeley guidelines for camps and recreational programs, California Department of Public Health guidelines for day camps, guidelines of the American Camp Association, National Afterschool Association, USA Gymnastics, and USA Skateboarding. Learn more

Be Well at Work Resources

University Health Services Be Well at Work has a number of resources, including written materials and support groups for addressing work/life issues during Covid-19.

Bright Horizons Additional Family Supports

  • Help and discounts for finding nannies, child care centers, tutors, etc., as well as information and resources (Please note that not all represented employees are eligible for this UCOP-sponsored program. Consult with your union representative for more information).
  • Bright Horizons Family Resources for Life at Home.

Expanded program and hours available!: Bright Horizons Back-Up Care program

Bright Horizons provides all benefits-eligible academic employees back-up care when their regular child or adult/elder care is unavailable. Eligbile employees can use up to 120 hours of back up care through June 30, 2021. Learn more

Berkeley Parents Network

Berkeley Parents Network is a site for Bay Area parents to seek advice, exchange information, and make parent connections.

Early Childhood Education Program (ECEP)

UC Berkeley's ECEP is working under various new protocols and procedures to comply with health and safety guidelines. Due to this, class sizes have been significantly reduced and have resulted in less availability of care spaces for families.

ECEP’s 2020-21 school year will commence with limited enrollment based upon the enrollment priorities established by the University.

They will continue to accept applications from new families for their waiting list, however at this time they will not be able to provide care for any new families.