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IU releases new guide for fall campus operations


IU administration released a “Return to Campus Guide” for the fall semester last week with details of how different parts of the university will operate under new COVID-19 restrictions.

According to the new guide, facial coverings must be worn in buildings, on public transportation and outdoors if social distancing is not possible. Every IU student and employee will receive two facial coverings from the university when they return to campus. Handmade cloth masks and surgical masks are also acceptable face coverings if students or employees would prefer to wear their own. 

The guide’s instructions include washing hands frequently, cleaning work areas more often and more intensely, sanitizing mail and packages and physically distancing at least 6 feet from others whenever possible. 

COVID-19 training about how to prevent getting sick at work will be available for all university employees on Canvas. Employees are not required to participate, but they are required to sign a “Community Responsibility Acknowledgement” that outlines the seriousness of the coronavirus and the importance of each person doing their part to prevent its spread. 

The document states that cleaning procedures will occur more frequently in university buildings and other shared spaces. The university also encourages each employee and student to proactively disinfect their own work areas. Hand sanitizer will be available inside most building entrances and at the exits of high-traffic elevators. 

Socially distant procedures are required for all university work areas, including staying 6 feet apart from other people, separating work stations 6 feet apart or with physical barriers, reducing large gatherings and physical contact and staggering work schedules. All employees and students are encouraged to take the stairs to limit time spent in elevators. 

The document lays out a procedure for any employee or student who shows symptoms of or who tests positive for COVID-19 while on campus. All students and employees must monitor their health and report any symptoms that could be related to the coronavirus. All IU students and employees have access to free IU Health screening and testing services. 

Guidance for in-person classes and classroom setups will vary depending on the class. 

The document also includes a phased reentry plan which goes into detail about which parts of campus will open and when. Most campus operations will remain closed with only essential personnel allowed until in-person classes start Aug. 24, and will return to a mostly-closed state when online classes begin Nov. 20. 

More information about IU’s reopening plan is available at

Graphic by Carson TerBush

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