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    Spring Semester Plans Adjust to Latest Guidelines

    University of Scranton’s Royals Safe Together plan includes adjustments made for the latest health and safety guidelines from the CDC and Pennsylvania Dept. of Health. The spring semester begins on Monday, Feb. 1, and ends Friday, May. 21.
    January 27, 2021

    The University of Scranton announced its Royals Safe Together Plan for the return of students to campus for the spring 2021 semester. The plan takes into account the latest health and safety recommendations from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and Pennsylvania Department of Health (PA DOH). Although the plan includes many of the elements put in place for the fall semester, such as campus-wide COVID-19 surveillance testing, social distancing, mask requirements and cleaning protocols, the spring semester plan requires all graduate and undergraduate students returning to campus to provide a negative COVID-19 PCR test result taken within 72 hours prior to their arrival on campus. Also, following new recommendations from the CDC, the period required for students to be in quarantine will now be 10 days. The University will follow the updated CDC guidelines for COVID testing students while in quarantine.

    During the spring semester, the University will be among the Landmark Conference schools participating in winter, fall and spring sports, following the health and safety recommendations of the NCAA Resocialization Guidelines, as well as Landmark Conference Covid-19 Game Day Policies. Spectators are not allowed at competitions at this time. Live streaming of games is available. Additional information regarding team schedules will be posted on the University’s Athletics webpage.

    In November, the University announced changes to its academic calendar for the spring semester, which begins on Monday, Feb. 1, and ends on Friday, May 21. The University will not have a spring break; however, two days with no classes were included in the schedule on Tuesday, Mar. 9, and Wednesday, Mar. 24. The University will have an Easter break from Thursday, Apr. 1, to Monday, Apr. 5.

    The Royals Safe Together Plan for the spring semester reminds members of the University community of their individual responsibility to follow guidelines to protect the health and well-being of themselves and others. As in the fall semester, face masks and social distancing are required on campus, and personal hygiene practices, and cleaning and disinfecting regimens that were enacted in the fall continue in the spring semester. Special Student Life guidelines for off-campus students will continue, including to limit group gathering size, and the University will continue to address any non-compliance. All students and employees who are on campus will also participate in COVID-19 PCR surveillance testing, which will be conducted on campus throughout the semester beginning the week of Feb. 8. Members of the University community who are on campus will continue to use a daily wellness self-screening application that provides an easy way for them to review symptoms by responding to a series of simple questions as recommended by the Pennsylvania Department of Health. Even those who are vaccinated must adhere to the University’s health and safety requirements.

    Also in the spring semester, as in the fall, classes will be offered in a variety of formats including: traditional face-to-face formats in classrooms adjusted to meet social distancing recommendations; hybrid formats with students attending in-person classes and remote formats; and classes that are fully remote.

    Laboratory classes will also follow social distancing protocols. Undergraduate, graduate and graduate clinical coursework in off-campus locations will be permitted with the cooperation and permission of external partners.  The campus will remain closed to visitors and the general public except by appointment (i.e. admissions visitors, athletics), including the use of the Weinberg Memorial Library.

    The Royals Safe Together Plan also addresses cleaning protocols, dining services, Campus Ministries, health services, student life and a number of other critical areas, including contact tracing, and housing arrangements for students requiring isolation or quarantine. The plan also recognizes the need to continue to adapt to changing circumstances.

    Decisions regarding Commencement have not yet been made.

    More information is available on the Royals Safe Together Plan webpage.
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