University of Cincinnati goes back to having remote classes due to COVID-19 surge

The University of Cincinnati is pushing back in-person learning amid a surge in COVID-19 cases and hospitalizations.

In a letter to faculty and staff, UC announced it will transition to online operations Jan. 5 and return to in-person activities Jan. 24.

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“To minimize the disruption that the high transmissibility of the Omicron variant and subsequent quarantining and classroom absences would have on our operations, classes, along with academic support services, will be conducted online for the first two weeks of the academic semester,” the university said.

Students can return to campus residence halls on a voluntary basis but they will be required to participate in COVID screening tests, regardless of their vaccination status. UC requires students, faculty and staff to be vaccinated.

“The goal of this in-person delay is for us to assess the impact of Omicron on our populations; let the spike in transmissions run its course; implement additional measures for screening testing and vaccination; and assess the feasibility of providing faculty, staff, and students the opportunity to receive booster shots,” the letter says. “We want to ensure that, when we come back, we come back to a safer, healthier, and fully vibrant face-to-face experience.”

In-person activities that were allowed when the school previously transitioned to online learning can continue. Those activities include clinicals, labs, and studio or performance activities. Campus buildings will remain open, though the school will follow health and safety guidelines.

UC isn’t the only area college making changes right now. Northern Kentucky University is delaying the start of its spring classes an extra week until Tuesday, Jan. 18.

NKU president Ashish Vaidya cited the record amount of COVID-19 infections and the rise in the regional transmission rates as the reasons for delaying the spring semester.

At Xavier University, students are required to wear facial coverings.

WCPO is a content partner of the Journal-News.

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