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CSCU not delaying return to campuses; In-person classes set to resume

Central Connecticut State University in New Britain.
Central Connecticut State University in New Britain.

As multiple colleges and universities around Connecticut moved classes online and delayed students’ return to campus for the spring semester due to a recent rise in COVID-19 cases, the Connecticut State Colleges and University system announced that it will begin the spring 2022 semester as originally scheduled.

The announcement sent out Thursday stated that state university students will move into residence halls as scheduled on Jan. 17 and 18, and in-person classes will start on Jan. 19. In-person classes at the community colleges will also resume as scheduled on Jan. 21.

Face masks will also continue to be required while indoors on campuses, and vaccine requirements also remain in place — CSCU officials highly encourage boosters but have not required them at this time.

“In conferring with Academic Affairs leadership, we understand that pivoting to online or hybrid classes for a couple of weeks and then pivoting back to on-ground classes would be challenging to both faculty and students,” said Zulma Toro, Central Connecticut State University president, in an email sent out to students and staff on campus about the decision. “It also could add to the anxiety that many of our family members are experiencing these days. Therefore, classes will maintain their previously designated modality.”

As COVID-19 cases in Connecticut steadily increased over the last month, several colleges and universities throughout the state decided to make changes heading into the spring semester for students and faculty returning after the holidays — Wesleyan and Yale universities are among some of those schools, as is the University of Connecticut.

In a message sent out to students and staff last Thursday, UConn officials announced that the first two weeks of the spring semester, which begins Jan. 18, will be entirely remote. Move-in for residential students at the Storrs and Stamford campuses was pushed back to Jan. 29.

“At this point, we are looking only at the two weeks that’s been announced,” UConn spokesperson Stephanie Reitz said. “But we’re monitoring all the public health indicators, and if we have to make a change, we would do that if necessary, but we will communicate it out as broadly and as quickly as we could.”

The university also stated in the announcement that COVID vaccine booster shots will be required for eligible students in the near future. No date has been set for when students would need to get the booster. Students can find more information about how to get boosters and how to report receiving the dose to the university through the Student Health and Wellness site.

The University of New Haven announced this week that students, faculty and staff are required to get a vaccine booster dose by Jan. 31. Yale also announced last month that all students who are eligible to receive a COVID vaccine booster are required to get one by Jan. 18.

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