Policy Rationale And Scope
(Updated September 17, 2020)
At Shenandoah University we are committed to being a community of care. We do our best to care for our neighbor and make our community one of compassion, responsibility, advocacy and justice. Furthermore, in response to the COVID-19 public health pandemic, Shenandoah University is legally obligated to implement health and safety measures as a matter of SU policy pursuant to Virginia law. In Executive Order 67 (Phase 3), Governor Northam states that “Institutions of higher education shall comply with all applicable requirements under the Phased Guidance of Virginia Forward and the guidelines for all Business Sectors.” Those guidelines require employees among other things to establish policies and practices for maintaining appropriate physical distance between persons not living in the same household.
Therefore, Shenandoah University has adopted the following policy on Personal Conduct and Social Distancing. This policy is applicable to all students, employees, contractors, volunteers, guests, and all other persons who are physically present on a university owned or operated campus or property, or who participate (including spectate) in a university program or activity (“community members”). This policy is enforceable on all university campuses and properties (“campus” or “campuses”) and in all university-sponsored programs and activities (“programs”). This policy is in force immediately upon publication and will continue until retracted by the University President. In the event Virginia law is or becomes more restrictive with respect to any component of this policy, Virginia law shall control.
Policy On Personal Conduct And Social Distancing
Shenandoah University requires all community members:
- To evaluate their health honestly and submit their symptoms daily in the Shenandoah Go app.
- To wear a non-valved surgical or two-ply cloth mask over the nose and mouth in any enclosed building or structure on a university campus, including academic and administrative buildings (‘buildings”).
- When gathering indoors, maintain a distance of at least 6 feet of distance. Wear a mask and limit interaction to fewer than 15 minutes. Greater distance may be required for some activities.
- While outside on campus, when maintaining a physical distance of greater than 6 feet from other individuals no mask is required. When maintaining a physical distance of less than 6 feet from other individuals a mask is required.
Mask Implementation Procedures
It is the responsibility of supervisors and classroom instructors to monitor compliance with this policy. Supervisors and instructors must ask anyone not wearing a mask to comply with the campus policy and/or the law and indicate where the person might get a mask if they do not have one. If, after the request has been made, the individual refuses to wear a mask, supervisors and instructors must ask the individuals to leave. If an individual refuses to leave then DPS should be notified immediately. Individuals should report violations to the Office Student Conduct and Community Standards (if a student), the Provost’s office (if faculty), or to Human Resources (if staff). If the individual not wearing a mask is a visitor, any member of the Shenandoah community who sees the violation should report it to the Department of Public Safety.
Each student and employee studying or working in person will be provided with at least one non-surgical grade cloth mask. Purchasing additional masks is the responsibility of the individual. Additional masks will be available for purchase on the main campus.
Students, staff, and faculty who require others to use a clear mask for communication purposes should make the request to the appropriate office. For students, the request should be made to Disability Services and for employees to the Office of Human Resources.
In each of these situations, individuals should maintain social distancing as much as possible:
When the individual suffers from a medical condition that prevents the use of the type of mask expressly authorized under this policy, their situation will be considered as requests for accommodation under the Americans with Disability Act (ADA). Students making such a request should direct the request to Disability Services. In the event you would like to make a modified learning request to take classes fully online, you may submit this form. Faculty and staff should direct such requests to the Office of Human Resources;
During physical activities, athletic practices, athletic events, or classes that require exercise; however, individuals should abide by the requirements of the specific facility in which the activity is occurring and endeavor to maintain social distancing or the NCAA Core Principles;
When eating in designated areas;
When the person is alone in an enclosed individual office, or is in their personal residence hall room or apartment/suite;
When communicating with someone who is hearing impaired or otherwise disabled and where the ability to see the mouth is essential to communication;
When giving a speech for broadcast or an audience, as long as the speaker is more than ten feet from the audience. The exception does not apply to regular classroom lectures;
When performing solo for broadcast on an instrument deemed low risk, such as string instruments, piano, organ, or percussion. The exception does not apply to regular classroom activities, applied lessons or rehearsals.
Shenandoah University may implement additional measures to encourage and facilitate social distancing, including without limitation:
- Restricting the number of people permitted in communal spaces such as lounges, stairwells, elevators and public spaces
- Expanding food options such as offering pre-packaged meals, curbside pick-up, and delivery
- Closing or re-assigning residence hall spaces
- Restricting guests in residence halls
- Restricting athletics and club sports
- Limiting the number of attendees for events and activities
In addition to the policy, the university encourages community members to follow guidelines to preserve community health and slow the spread of COVID-19 and other communicable diseases. These guidelines include the following:
- Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds especially after you have been in a public place, or after blowing your nose, coughing, or sneezing.
- If soap and water are not readily available, use a hand sanitizer that contains at least 60% alcohol.
- Avoid close contact with people by maintaining at least six feet of distance.
- Cover your mouth and nose with a surgical or two-ply cloth facial mask when around others
- Avoid shaking hands and coming into “close contact” with others.
- Monitor your health daily by utilizing the Shenandoah Go app and stay home if you are feeling ill and communicate with your faculty and/or work supervisor.
- Avoid unnecessary travel
Sick students or employees who have been informed by a qualified medical provider that they have COVID-19 (either as the result of a diagnosis or a positive test) shall:
- Report a positive result to the university using the form on the website
- Follow their medical provider’s advice and cooperate with any contact tracer who contacts you.
- If you are a residential student, stay in the new dormitory room you will be assigned by the university, and if you are a student who does not live on campus or an employee, stay in your home, for no fewer than 10 days from the start of your symptoms. Stay away from others, especially people who are at higher risk for getting very sick from COVID-19. During your period of isolation
- Do not come to campus for classes, work, or any activities
- Do not engage in public events or activities
- If you are a student, you can end isolation only if you have been cleared by the Wilkins Wellness Center or comply with CDC guidelines regarding ending home isolation.
- If you are an employee, you can end isolation when you produce a note from your medical provider clearing you to return to work, or you are otherwise eligible to return under Virginia law.
Students or employees who are requested by a contact tracer or university official to self-quarantine due to exposure to an individual with COVID-19 shall:
- Report a possible COVID-19 exposure to the university using the form on the website
- Cooperate with any contact tracer who contacts you.
- If you are a residential student, stay in the new dormitory room you will be assigned by the university, and if you are a student who does not live on campus or an employee, stay in your home, for 14 days after your last contact with a person who has COVID-19. Stay away from others, especially people who are at higher risk for getting very sick from COVID-19. During your period of self-quarantine,
- Do not come to campus for classes, work, or any activities
- Do not engage in public events or activities
- Monitor your temperature at least two times per day to check for fever. Symptoms of COVID-19 include an elevated body temperature of 100.4 F or higher, cough, and shortness of breath, trouble breathing or other symptoms.
- If you experience a fever (100.4 F or greater), or any of the symptoms described above, and you are a student, contact the Wilkins Wellness Center at (540) 665-4530 or email@example.com; if you are an employee, contact your primary care physician. In addition, whether you are a student or employee, submit a confidential report to the Wilkins Wellness Center (students) or SU Human Resources Department (employees) utilizing this link, which can also be found on the coronavirus page of SU’s website and located at https://www.su.edu/health-wellness/health-wellness-home/self-report-a-covid-exposure-or-positive-test-result/
Students who fail to comply with this policy, and/or any associated procedures or protocols, will be removed from a classroom and subject to further discipline under the Student Code of Conduct.
University employees who fail to comply with this policy, and any associated procedures or protocols, will be subjected to disciplinary action, including reassignment, probation and up to and including dismissal from employment by the university, consistent with applicable procedures.
The university reserves the right to alter and/or change this policy, procedures, guidelines and protocols in response to changing circumstances. Shenandoah University will make reasonable efforts to notify community members of changes through university email, newsletters, and/or where appropriate, signage. However, it is up to each community member to review this policy for the most recent updates.