Welcome to IFUT’s Summer Newsletter.
Apart from our erratic and unpredictable weather, we have all felt during the past weird months of the COVID crisis that nothing is as it should be. Indeed, such has been the upheaval that has afflicted us all, that we often felt as though every single thing we did was unseasonal, unfamiliar, unprecedented, and without recognisable parameters.
But it is very important that we recognise that it is Summer and it certainly is time for us to take a rest and a breather.
We all know that Higher Education, especially in the sector where IFUT is active, is an all-year-round job. At this time of year we, typically, are catching up on research and working long hours correcting and evaluating scripts, theses and examination papers. And, long before we have been allowed enough time on our research, we will be pressed in to service drawing up timetables, schedules, rotas and field trips (pandemic-compatible, of course!).
But somewhere in there you have got to give yourselves a break. And it won’t just happen, you have got to plan for it. Nowadays, more than ever before, because of pandemic-demanded remote-working, our work and leisure times have become blended and their borders blurred. Real, healthy, leisure and recuperation time must be clearly distinguishable from working time. Colleges are asking staff to take leave and not take meetings during the last two weeks in July and first two weeks in August. That is one piece of management advice that this Trade Union is urging you to follow … as a minimum!
So, for at least two consecutive weeks, put an ‘out-of-office’ message on your phone and all of your devices and tell your colleagues, your reports, your students and, if necessary, the mammies and daddies of some students, that you are “Gone Fishin.” And, if they complain, tell them to take it up with your Union!
Oh! And have a great time and get some rest!!