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Indiana University suspending in-person classes in response to COVID-19

Posted at 4:03 PM, Mar 10, 2020
and last updated 2020-03-10 16:24:39-04

BLOOMINGTON — Indiana University is suspending in-person classes in response to COVID-19, the novel coronavirus.

The announcement was made in the form of a letter from University President Michael McRobbie posted on the university's website.

The suspension of in-person classes will happen following the university's scheduled spring break next week from March 15-22. Students on all IU campuses will be taught remotely for two weeks from March 23 to April 5. In-person classes are set to resume April 6, however, McRobbie said that is subject to change.

McRobbie said there have been no known cases of COVID-19 identified on any IU campus. Two students have self-reported presumptively testing positive after being in a Centers for Disease Control and Prevention-designated Level 3 country. They are receiving care at their home cities and neither has returned to an IU campus.

"Alongside our extensive prevention efforts that are already being carried out, it is now necessary to take further urgent, proactive steps to help keep the IU community safe," McRobbie said in the letter. "These measures will undoubtedly cause inconvenience and disruption, yet the risks of not acting now far outweigh the foreseeable inconvenience and challenges of these actions. The steps that we are taking are necessary to help ensure the continuing good health of our community."

During the two weeks following spring break, McRobbie urged students to travel home. Course work will continue via virtual online teaching. He said the university is investigating how to accommodate classroom activities that typically include laboratories or other in-person interactions.

McRobbie said IU campuses will not close and residential halls and dining will remain open.

The university is also encouraging unit heads to determine if any staff and faculty members are in a position to meet their work obligations from home by telecommuting and are in a position to do so.

McRobbie said university-sponsored or affiliated international travel as well as university-affiliated travel outside Indiana is suspended through April 5. Travelers returning from countries designated Level 2 or 3 by the CDC are subject to a 14-daty self-quarantine off campus upon return.