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Lawrence University announces plan to reopen, includes regular COVID-19 testing

Lawrence University Move IN_89043421-159532

APPLETON, Wis. (WFRV) – Lawrence University has unveiled its comprehensive plan for reopening the campus for the fall term. Part of the plan is Bellin Health performing regular coronavirus testing on campus throughout the academic year.

According to a Tuesday release, Lawrence University will open as planned for the fall term on September 14 with both students and faculty having the option to be on campus or remain remote. Classes will be offered in a mix of in-person and distance learning, with physical distancing requirements in place on campus.

“The university has contracted with Bellin Health to be our health care partner as we adapt as a community to living with COVID-19,” Lawrence President Mark Burstein said. “They will provide on-campus testing for all community members. We are also fortunate to have long-term existing relationships with Ascension and ThedaCare health systems in the Fox Valley, who will continue to supply essential local support.”

Lawrence says the students will be tested for coronavirus by Bellin medical personnel when they arrive this fall and again 14 days later. Faculty and staff will be tested as they return to campus. Those living or working on campus will then need to complete a daily screening of temperature and symptoms. Contact tracing will be conducted for anyone who tests positive for COVID-19.

Physical distancing rules will be in place and all members of the community will be required to wear masks in all indoor public spaces, including classrooms, as well as outdoor spaces where physical distancing is not possible. All members of the Lawrence community who opt to be on campus will need to sign a community pledge agreeing to follow the distancing and face-covering rules.

Exams will end before November 25 and the Thanksgiving holiday. December Term will not be held this year. 

Lawrence’s pandemic planning team consulted with health experts, both within Wisconsin and around the country, and with various faculty, students, staff, and trustees through the shared governance process, Burstein said.

“Our goal was to ensure that every Lawrentian will have the opportunity to learn, teach, and work as fully and safely as possible,” he said.

For a full outline of Lawrence’s back-to-campus plan, click here.

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