COVID and Other Matters
August 3, 2021
- Based on the last Ask Aaron webinar, IU currently does not plan to re-impose mask usage and social distancing, despite the surge in the delta variant. The reasoning is that vaccines protect individuals from severe illness. However, Monroe County may reinstate a mask mandate on Wednesday. I have not yet heard from the upper administration how IU will respond, but we should all be prepared to resume mask usage.
- As repeated by the IU Medical Response Team, fall of 2021 is envisioned as resembling fall of 2019. The fall 2021 restart plan can be found here. In-person instruction to normally occupied and unmasked classrooms is the plan, per the Ask Aaron webinar. The College and Campus are not allowing us to offer remote/hybrid instruction for anyone not returning to campus, or who does not wish to attend class in-person for any reason. Faculty should not make exceptions for students; In-person classes are intended to be taken in person. However, faculty can request students who attend in-person office hours to wear masks, and can also offer virtual office hours. We are waiting for more information on how contact tracing will be conducted in the absence of assigned seats, any special accommodations we need to make for students who are sick or in quarantine, etc. I know there are a lot of questions. We will send out more information as it becomes available.
- 1 August was IU’s official start of fall 2021 normalcy. With a few exceptions, our staff have returned to in-person work. The Department has experienced more turnover in staff. A more detailed announcement on who will be taking care of which tasks will be sent out later this week.
- Faculty and staff vaccination rates are over 90%, and the whole IU community is over 80%.
- WiFi- IU Secure is going to be retired, and will be replaced with eduroam. Please see the ITG website for additional information on setting up eduroam as your wifi source.
- Restrooms- Several central restrooms near the teaching labs that are undergoing major renovation. They are scheduled for completion before the start of classes.