NewsLocal News


FSU, FAMU, TCC enact plans to prevent COVID-19 spread on campus

Posted at 7:11 PM, Aug 25, 2020
and last updated 2020-08-25 19:11:14-04

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (WTXL) — University professors in the Capital are back in the classroom this week, giving students syllabi and refreshers on CDC guidelines.

Although those in-person classes may be back in session, administrators say they're prepared to make adjustments for COVID-19 safety.

Students at Tallahassee Community College were greeted with graphics from school leaders encouraging safe behavior to prevent COVID-19 spread.

Their instructors had to do a bit of homework themselves, backing up coursework in the event a classroom or building becomes quarantined.

"So what we've been doing is we've made sure that all our faculty are prepared to go remote at the spur of the moment. So all of their material is in our learning management platform right now so in case there is a break out of any sort, we can quickly move the class to an online, live, synchronous setting so that everyone is still learning."

Florida State University and Florida A&M University professors have similar precautions in place, but the universities face an added challenge: How to manage viral spread while thousands of students share living spaces in their dormitories.

According to FSU's Fall 2020 Plan, their first defense is setting aside space to quarantine students who live on campus that contract or come in contact with COVID-19.

"Two on-campus residence halls and several other smaller facilities have been designated and prepared for the 14-day isolation of students who test positive for the virus."

FAMU also dedicated a complex with around 100 single-student apartments for isolation.

"We're not looking at refunds for housing, but what we did was reduce our housing capacity. We really tried to take that into consideration when we looked into reopening. So people are all in individual living spaces and we hope that will take care of that."

All three are hoping to stave off the need to return to all virtual instruction with cooperative prevention.

"Everything we're asking you to do is not to protect you, it's to protect everybody around you. So we have to look out for each other and think about it that way."

FAMU administrators also encourage all students and faculty members to visit their free COVID-19 testing site at Bragg Memorial Stadium to help identify any positive cases and further prevent the spread.

FAMU and FSU will also operate under an abbreviated academic calendar due to COVID-19, with no in-person classes after Thanksgiving.