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COVID-19

Coronavirus Update: Jan. 6

January 6, 2021

SUNY Orange’s Spring semester will begin Monday, Jan. 25 with a week of remote learning for all students, with a few exceptions in the radiologic technology and nursing programs, before selected courses and labs begin their in-person learning components on Monday, Feb. 1.

Much like the Fall semester, approximately 85 percent of the College’s Spring students will be learning remotely and most of SUNY Orange’s operational and student support services will be provided virtually. SUNY Orange’s Spring 2021 Semester COVID-19 Response Plan incorporates system-wide guidance from State University of New York Chancellor Jim Malatras, and addresses College-specific expectations for pre-semester virus testing, reporting and monitoring; in-semester virus testing; safe on-campus operations; modes of instruction; and supports for students studying remotely.

“The Fall 2020 semester was not the semester we imagined, or originally planned, and it presented its share of challenges for all of us. But our College community rose to the occasion and delivered an affordable, quality, safe education, one we will build on with excellence for Spring 2021,” said Dr. Kristine Young, SUNY Orange president. “I’m especially proud of our students, who showed tremendous grit and determination. They placed their faith in us, and our professional faculty and staff delivered, combining their passion and knowhow for a productive and challenging academic experience.

“Our partnership locally with ODCOH provided us with experts we could turn to in order to maintain safe operations and conduct important contact tracing when it was needed,” Young added. “SUNY and Chancellor Malatras offered us a broad system-wide framework that streamlined and guided many of our efforts. Additionally, the innovative pooled saliva testing process developed by SUNY Upstate Medical was an accurate, inexpensive and fast monitoring tool that we plan to deploy to a greater extent moving forward.”

Prior to the start of the Spring 2021 semester, all students, faculty, and staff who will be working on campus, participating in in-person, on-campus instructional activities or regularly accessing a campus for services, must be pre-screened daily for travel history, COVID-19 history and COVID-19 symptoms for two weeks prior to their return. Once the semester starts, pooled testing will begin for all students taking in-person courses or labs.

On-campus academic instruction will be limited to those course-related activities requiring in-person, lab-based instruction or specialized computer hardware and software. Disciplines in which some on-campus instruction will take place include the health professions, lab sciences, computer science, and art/media.

Courses offered in alternative/distance formats will consist of “virtual campus” (flexible format where students are not required to be online at a specific time), “remote synchronous” (students have real-time instruction at designated days and times) or “blended” (learning integrates synchronous and asynchronous instruction). The vast majority of courses will employ the blended format so students benefit from real-time connections with faculty members along with the flexibility to complete work on their own schedule.

Only essential employees will be working on either campus in early January and additional non-essential employees will gradually return to both campuses, as needed to maintain sufficient support staffing levels, in accordance with the start of the semester.

For up-to-date information on the College’s COVID-19 response, or to view the Spring 2021 Plan, visit https://sunyorange.edu/covid-19/.