Safety Requirements on Campus
For the fall semester, the BOR has required COVID-19 immunization for all credit and non-credit students with the allowance of exemptions for medical and non-medical reasons.
All students who plan to be on campus for classes or activities will need to complete the online vaccination self-attestation.
In addition to the self-attestation, students who are seeking a medical exemption must submit a doctor’s note to Chuck Cleary, dean of student affairs, firstname.lastname@example.org. Students seeking a non-medical exemption must also fill out this form. Please email Dean Cleary if you have questions.
According to the CDC, COVID vaccines are safe and effective at preventing COVID-19 infection and virtually eliminating severe illness and death. Infections happen in only a small proportion of people who are fully vaccinated and when these infections do occur, they tend to be mild. However, if fully vaccinated individuals become infected with the Delta variant, there is some evidence they can spread the virus, though for a shorter duration than can unvaccinated people. Tunxis will continue to coordinate with the state Department of Public Health to advertise and host vaccine clinics to promote access to these important vaccines.
Weekly COVID Testing
Weekly testing will take place on campus for students who are unvaccinated or do not provide proof of their vaccine status. A testing vendor will coordinate with Tunxis to provide testing several times per week on campus.
As of this update, fall testing will begin in early September, and hours are Monday 1-5:30 p.m. and Thursday, 8 a.m.-12 p.m. at a location on campus to be determined.
The testing vendor will bill student’s insurance where possible or the cost will be covered by the state. More information specific to the weekly testing program will be available soon. Vaccinated students will not be tested as part of the weekly screening program.
All individuals should watch for Symptoms of COVID-19 | CDC, and if they have symptoms, should be tested and stay away from others. Symptoms can arise 2-14 days after exposure to the virus.
Per CDC guidance,
- You quarantine when you might have been exposed to the virus. Quarantine means to stay home and away from other people outside the home.
- You isolate when you have been infected with the virus, even if you don’t have symptoms. To isolate means the sick person stays away from everyone, including people in their home.
Should a student test positive for COVID they are required to notify our COVID Coordinator, Chuck Cleary (email@example.com), isolate for 10 days and not return to work or class until free of fever for 24 hours without the use of fever-reducing medication, other symptoms are improving and the COVID Coordinator has confirmed they can return safely to school. COVID-19: When to Quarantine | CDC
The COVID Coordinator will work with the local public health department and support contact tracing so that any individuals considered close contacts can be notified. A contact is defined by the CDC as someone who was within 6 feet of an infected person for a cumulative total of 15 minutes or more over a 24-hour period. For those considered a close contact who ARE NOT vaccinated, they should get a COVID test within 3-5 days of exposure, are not to return to work or class for 14 days from date of exposure and the COVID Coordinator has confirmed they can return safely to school.
People who are fully vaccinated DO NOT need to quarantine after contact with someone who had COVID-19. However, fully vaccinated people should be tested 3-5 days after their exposure. Should the vaccinated close contact get a positive test result or experience symptoms, they must self-isolate for 10 days or until fever is gone for 24 hours without the use of fever-reducing medication, other symptoms are improving and the COVID Coordinator has confirmed they can return safely to school.
- Outside: If you want to spend time with people who don’t live with you, outdoors is the safer choice! You are less likely to be exposed to COVID-19 during outdoor activities, even without the use of masks. Physical distancing will not be required outside of buildings except as deemed necessary by the institution such as large events with mixed of vaccinated and unvaccinated people where both physical distancing and masks may be required.
- Inside, for vaccinated AND unvaccinated individuals: DPH has indicated classrooms are low-risk spaces due to the student vaccination requirement and the universal wearing of masks. Fall classroom spaces have been arranged in most cases at a minimum of 3 feet of physical distancing. In addition, office areas, particularly those that serve students, have been arranged with a minimum of 3 feet of physical distancing wherever possible.
- Outside: Masking will not be required outside of buildings. However, we strongly encourage those who are not vaccinated to continue to wear masks outside. As noted above, campus leaders may deem masks necessary at certain outdoor larger events.
- Inside: At this time, because of current virus conditions, wearing face coverings (multi-layer cotton mask recommended) over the nose and mouth is required inside all campus buildings for both vaccinated and unvaccinated students and employees. This includes offices, conference/meeting rooms, event spaces, classrooms, libraries and laboratories, etc.
- Inside (exceptions): Some students and employees, who have received accommodations, may wear face shields instead of masks.
Requesting an Accommodation/Exemption
Students who wish to seek medical/disability accommodations should contact the Disability Services offices and students who wish to seek non-medical exemptions should contact the Student Affairs office for assistance.
Tunxis will offer food service this fall. Masks may be removed while actively eating and drinking in designated areas. Maintaining physical distancing from others while eating and drinking, particularly those you don’t live with, is highly encouraged for fully vaccinated individuals and required for unvaccinated individuals.
Per the CDC guidance, unvaccinated individuals who travel outside of Connecticut should get a test 1-3 days before and 3-5 days after travel and quarantine for 7 days upon return; even if they get a negative test individuals should quarantine for the full 7 days. If they receive a positive test or experience symptoms, isolation is required for 10 days or until fever is gone for 24 hours and other symptoms are improving. Before returning to campus, students and employees must be cleared by the COVID Coordinator. Those who are vaccinated do not need to test or quarantine after traveling.
At this time, the CDC recommends individuals do not travel internationally until they are fully vaccinated. Read the full CDC international travel guidance for vaccinated and unvaccinated individuals (cdc.gov). The COVID-19 situation, including the spread of new or concerning variants, differs from country to country. All travelers need to pay close attention to the conditions at their destination before traveling.
Unvaccinated employees and students will be prohibited from school-sponsored travel unless granted an exception for special circumstances until such time as local, national and international transmission of the virus is low and/or CDC guidance changes. All school sponsored and personal international travel must be discussed with the COVID Coordinator to establish a plan for the student’s or employee’s safe return to campus. All sponsored trips should follow CDC guidance for public transportation. Requirement for Face Masks on Public Transportation Conveyances and at Transportation Hubs | CDC. Note: the travel rules do not apply to individuals who commute from neighboring states to go to school or work.
Risk Acknowledgement and Class Formats
In the case of a severe outbreak of the coronavirus or other illness, Tunxis reserves the right to adapt the format of any class to an entirely online/distance learning modality as public health conditions warrant. Such change will not result in any increase or decrease of tuition and fees. We all understand that tuition and fees are in exchange for learning, academic credit, and certain non-academic services regardless of whether taught on-ground, in a hybrid environment or entirely remotely.
Most important to CSCU and Tunxis is the health, safety and welfare of every member of its community. Yet, despite campus efforts to comply with health and safety guidelines, it is not possible to guarantee a disease-free environment, or to guarantee that campuses will not close and return to an online-only learning environment. These are the realities of working and learning during a pandemic. By choosing to be on campus during the pandemic, you accept that you are willing to do your part to keep the campus safe and acknowledge that you may be required to complete your course work in an evolving or remote learning environment