SUNY Geneseo has developed a restart plan for the fall semester that will require face coverings, physically-distanced instructions, and daily health screenings, including self-administered temperature checks.
Students will return to “a different campus environment,” SUNY Geneseo President Denise Battles said in a video message.
“We are determine to make your academic and student life experiences as meaningful as possible within health and safety parameters established by the state of New York and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention,” Battle said.
The plan, which has been approved by New York State, is in line with New York Forward higher education regulations and SUNY requirements, and was created in consultation with the Livingston County Department of Health and University of Rochester Medical Center, which helped to determine institutional approaches to support public health and campus safety.
“We are doing our very best to ensure a safe and healthy environment this semester and you will play a big role in making that happen,” Battles said.
Students can expect to see changes in how classes are presented, how instructional spaces are set up, the fall schedule and other protocols.
Classes are scheduled to begin Aug. 31 and may include a mix of on-campus, virtual and hybrid learning experiences.
The hybrid courses will rely on a “flipped” approach that moves some activities outside the classroom, such as assigning lectures as homework via video or other media, and utilizing classroom time for discussions, small group work and other highly-engaged activities, the plan said.
Faculty have been “strongly encouraged” to develop fall semester courses as “remote-ready,” to ensure that the curriculum is accessible to students who may need to access classes online and is easily adaptable to changes in public health conditions in the event they need to switch to remote learning at any time.
The fall semester runs through Dec. 22, but the schedule will see some changes. Traditional fall break has been eliminated. The college has added two “rejuvenation days” on Sept. 20 and Oct. 27.
The Thanksgiving holiday will occur as normally scheduled, but could see a change after the break.
“If conditions do not support in-person classes after Thanksgiving break, the balance of the semester will be completed remotely,” the plan said.
SUNY Geneseo students will be asked to complete a health screening questionnaire before returning to campus. They will also be required to conduct a 7-day precautionary quarantine at home before coming to campus. Students who have recently tested positive within 14 days prior to arriving on campus will be asked to quarantine at home for 14 days or until no longer symptomatic. Students will also undergo a health screening upon arrival on campus and use a web-based health screening app daily.
International students who arrive in the U.S. prior to the start of classes are expected to adhere to CDC guidelines, which currently require a 14-day quarantines. Students who do not complete the mandatory quarantine prior to arrival on campus must quarantine on campus for 14 days.
Out-of-state students traveling to Geneseo from a state designated by New York as having significant community spread must quarantine upon entry to New York for 14 days from the last travel within the designated state. Those who do not complete the quarantine will be required to quarantine on campus.
Students who are high risk due to underlying medical conditions are being told to coordinate with their primary care physician or medical specialist to determine if coming to campus is appropriate.
Move-in plans for residence hall will be adjusted to allow for physical distancing and safety precautions. Provisions include limiting access points and staggering arrival times, and limiting the number of guests who assist with move-in.
A move-out plan is being developed that could be implemented within 48 hours should health conditions require residential operations to be suspended.
“As individuals we will all need to do our part to prevent the spread of the coronavirus on our campus and in the community,” Battles said in her video message.
Health and safety measures
Students, faculty and staff are asked in the plan to commit to protect each other’s health and safety by:
n Wearing a mask in all common areas. Face coverings will be required in all instructional spaces, including classrooms, lecture halls and laboratories, and in commons areas in residence halls and other campus buildings.
n Completing a health screening online or using a new smartphone app. Anyone with health symptoms consistent with or who have possible exposure to COVID-19 will be asked to quarantine and be tested. Jones Hall will be used to house students who are exposed to or test positive for coronavirus.
n Adhering to restrictions on social gatherings, and maintain social (physical) distancing in the presence of others in all campus spaces.
n Agreeing to complete quarantine or isolation periods when required. Violations of these requirements will be taken very seriously and will be handled under the student conduct system.
n Practicing good hygiene, through frequent handwashing and disinfection of shared surfaces. SUNY Geneseo will continue to clean facilities that are in use more frequently and keep high-touch areas sanitized.
n Be considerate of others, especially those at high risk.
The college is also encouraging students to get flu vaccinations early.
The college plans to have an increased presence of hand-sanitizer stations available throughout common areas and encourage the use of touch-free dispenses where possible.
Entrance and exist points will be designated at campus buildings and additional signage will indicate traffic flow. Floors will be marked to be consistent with social distancing guidelines and updated room usage information will be posted in all common areas.
Furniture will be removed or reconfigured to allow for physical distancing.
Classrooms and research labs will be regularly cleaned and sanitized and appropriate sanitation supplies, such as disinfectant wipes and hand sanitizer stations, will be available. Where feasible, additional protective equipment such as Plexiglass shields will be installed.
Changes in residence halls will focus on hygiene, sanitation and management of high-usage spaces such as restrooms. Specific plans include:
n Provide ongoing education about and reinforcement of expectations regarding healthy practices, hygiene and sanitation, PPE usage and civic responsibility.
n Require students to bring thermometers to campus.
n Distribute and replenish masks to students. The college plans to offer a variety of face coverings, including a mix of reusable cloth and disposable face coverings. They will also offer clear face shields and masks to support students and employees who may rely on lip-reading.
n Students living in suite-style residence hall units will continue to share commons spaces in those suites in small, family-style groups. A limited number of “Superior Singles” will be made available, and “Medical Singles” will also be available for those who qualify.
n Guests will be prohibited from residence halls, including those living in other residence halls.
n Arrange residence hall common spaces to meet physical distancing standards or restrict usage.
n Implement procedures for residence hall programs to manage participation, including limits on the number of attendees and an RSVP system to track and cap attendance.
n Implement common disinfecting measures for any shared items such as games, cooking utensils, moving cats and cleaning equipment.
n Develop a restroom use plan that factors in hygiene recommendations.
n Implement physical distancing and other safety measures for all regular business, including staff meetings, training, programming student conduct interventions and duty and crisis response.
Dining services will also see changes to comply with room capacity and physical distancing, including adjusting the number of available tables and chairs, and sanitization.
Masks will be required to enter dining halls and must be worn by employees and diners at all times, except when seated to eat. Separate entrances and exits will be established where possible.
Online ordering, take-out options and delivery services are being added to reduce volume in dine-in facilities.
To read SUNY Geneseo’s full restart plan, go to https://www.geneseo.edu/restart