26
Mar

Special Statement from Minnesota State Colleges and Universities Office of the Chancellor

College and University Communications re: Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19) Revised March 12, 2020

Minnesota State and our colleges and universities are closely monitoring the developing situation related to COVID-19 and are committed to taking steps necessary to protect the health and safety of our faculty, our staff, and our students.

Minnesota State has announced several actions regarding COVID-19 including:

The 32 Minnesota State colleges and universities who are currently on Spring Break (Central Lakes College) are suspending classes March 16 – March 22, with classes resuming March 23. The five Minnesota State colleges that have Spring Break scheduled the week of March 16-20 are suspending classes March 23 – March 29, with classes resuming March 30.

While there will be no classes during each campuses’ extra week, all administrators, faculty, and staff shall report to duty so we can work through the needed logistics to teach classes using alternative modes of delivery.

  • Students will be contacted by their individual institutions and instructors for specific details on their course delivery methods before classes resume
  • Academic leaders and faculty will review and determine the most viable means for course delivery to fulfill course obligations/expectations
  • Institutions will explore alternative/expanded means to deliver student services

All campuses, including residence halls, dining facilities, and student support services and offices will remain open and appropriately staffed. Employees who are well should report to work.

Minnesota State has canceled all gatherings and events totaling more than 100 attendees until May 1. This approach will be reviewed and adjusted as new information emerges.

Minnesota State has suspended all out-of-state business-related travel for students, faculty and staff, effective Monday, March 16. Any needed exemptions will be reviewed on a case-by-case basis.

All international travel related to Minnesota State including study abroad programs and any other activities involving faculty, staff, and students has also been suspended. Campus leaders have been directed to mitigate the cost attributed to the suspension of international travel and work to ease the impact of this decision on our students.

We are working closely with the Minnesota Department of Health (MDH) and are conveying their information and guidance related to COVID-19 to our colleges and universities. MDH and Minnesota State are working to develop regular communication channels to proactively address school-related topics with regard to COVID.

Information that MDH is making available for schools, colleges and universities is available at https://www.health.state.mn.us/diseases/coronavirus/schools.html.

The latest information on the Minnesota State response to the COVID-19 outbreak is available at https://minnstate.edu/coronavirus/. Information specific to each of the 30 colleges and seven universities of Minnesota State is also being published on their websites.

To date, there have been no positive cases of COVID-19 reported at any Minnesota State college or university or at the system office.

We are encouraging students and employees to practice respiratory (coughing and sneezing) etiquette and hand hygiene, and to stay at home when sick. We are also encouraging supervisors and faculty to be flexible with employees and students who are sick, expressing symptoms of respiratory issues, or caring for family members to the maximum extent possible.

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