William & Mary releases updates on fall semester; students to return August 12

Williamsburg

WILLIAMSBURG, Va. (WAVY) — The College of William & Mary has released a number of updates for the fall semester as the scheduled return date is set for August 12.

The announcement includes a phased approach to reopening and information on class flexibility, remote learning, safety and wellness, and information for employees. The semester will not include a fall break and will end before Thanksgiving.

The phased opening is to allow for COVID-19 testing and possible quarantine if needed. The college is developing a program that will require students to be tested once arriving on campus and periodically throughout the semester.

The testing will be available for all students — on-campus, off-campus, undergraduates, and graduates. Testing will be offered to students before they leave campus in November to head home.

“The fall semester will be about maximum flexibility,” said President Katherine A. Rowe. “Flexibility is built into the design because uncertainty is built into our reality.”

“We will be here for our community,” she added. “William & Mary is going to adapt as we need to and ensure our students maintain momentum and that we continue to create the close connections between teachers and learners our university is known for.”

William & Mary also plans to increase its capacity to provide access to health care on campus in the event that symptomatic students need to be treated through the Student Health Center.

The college will provide “wellness kits” for students and staff that include washable masks, hand sanitizer, and wipes. Additional protective supplies will be available for staff.

A symptom-tracking app will be available for quick assessments as well as touchless temperature stations and 200 hand sanitizer stations throughout the campus.

The full list of campus health protocols is available on the university’s Path Forward website

By mid-July, all courses will be assigned a course delivery category that will describe the mode of instruction. The information will be available to students in Banner.

Students will be able to generate a remote schedule for the fall semester if that is their preference. Continuing students can make changes to their schedule in early August.

Indoor and outdoor spaces on campus will be repurposed for instruction. The college is working to use larger spaces to allow for physical distancing of eight feet for up to 80 students in one room.

COVID-19 testing will be available to employees who would like to be tested, regardless of whether they are symptomatic. All employees will be eligible to receive testing at one or more designated health care locations in the Williamsburg area. 

For more information visit wm.edu/pathforward.


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