From the Vice President for Student Affairs, re: Student Quarantining

August 27, 2020

Dear Faculty and Staff Colleagues,

Happy New Year!  I hope your new academic year is off to a positive start.  This week we sent notices of students who began the semester in quarantine.  We have received a lot of questions about this and thought it might be useful to provide some additional detail on what you can expect if you receive one of these notices.

To start the year, a student might be in quarantine because they are from a state on the CT travel advisory list and were not able to arrive 14 days in advance of the beginning of classes.  A student might be in quarantine because they tested positive in our pre-arrival testing of residential students.  As such, they were not allowed to move into the residence halls and must quarantine at home.  And, a student might be in quarantine (or isolation) because they were associated with one of our positive tests on campus (as referenced in the email you receive from President Joe on Friday).

Most of these students had no contact with the campus community.  However, for the students who had contact with SCSU friends or others on campus, we have engaged our COVID-19 protocols for positive tests.  Once we have completed the contact tracing process for a student who has tested positive, the contact tracer notifies the Dean of Students office with the names of these students and length of their quarantine.  The Dean of Students Office will then notify the faculty and campus supervisor (if the student works on campus) of the students who must quarantine. 

Similar to the regular notification of student illness that comes from the Dean of Students Office, we are asking that you help students continue with their classes.  This is most likely to disrupt in-person classes and experiential learning, but there may also be reasons it interferes with virtual learning, especially if the student is ill.  We will ensure they have access to technology and hope that you can help them keep up with classes.  The expectation is not that you can provide virtual access to an on-ground class.  Each class will be different and we hope you can find ways to ensure they can access necessary material and keep up with their learning.

Please know that we will not be disclosing a students’ test results so you will not know if the student is quarantining because of possible exposure or is self-isolating due to a positive test.  If there is a chance you have been exposed through contact with the student, you will have been contacted separately by the contact tracing team.  If you receive notice and were not contacted by the contact tracing team, then you can assume you were not identified as being at risk of exposure per the CDC guidelines for contact tracing.

The Reopening website is filled with additional information that might be helpful to you, including information on monitoring and containment and response checklists.  We know that these are complicated times and we are here to be helpful to you.  Please don’t hesitate to reach out to me, the Dean of Students Office or anyone in Student Affairs if we can support you and our students’ success this semester.  Thank you for all you are doing!  Best wishes for a terrific semester!

Sincerely,

Tracy Tyree
Vice President for Student Affairs