A private liberal arts college in Vermont reverted to remote learning until the close of the fall semester due to 50 active COVID-19 cases on campus.
Final exams, which were scheduled to wrap up by Sunday, will be administered remotely, and students, 99% of whom are fully vaccinated, are encouraged to leave campus early.
Middlebury College’s leadership announced Thursday that 49 students and one employee have tested positive, with 34 of those cases being new.
“While many of the new cases we have identified appear to be connected, occurring in clusters among people who socialize together, an increase in the prevalence of COVID-19 increases the likelihood of broader community transmission,” officials said.
The school, with an undergraduate enrollment of 2,858, said it is conducting contact tracing and offering testing for all students. It currently requires all students and staff without a religious or medical exemption to be vaccinated against COVID-19.
Those who are asymptomatic are not required to wait on their results before leaving campus. Negative COVID-19 results will be emailed to students, while infected students will be contacted by health services.
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The campus will provide grab-and-go meals only, with a strict mask mandate policy when in those spaces.
Those who have symptoms must wait on a negative result before campus departure. Those who can’t leave early are permitted to stay.
“Rising student cases that require isolation, ongoing transmission and the few days remaining in the semester warrant the change to remote instruction,” school officials wrote.
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All indoor events have been canceled, and outdoor gatherings must be limited to six people. Visitation is only permitted virtually.