Category: Messages to the Community

Title: Teaching Reminders for Faculty

Date Published: September 21, 2021

Dear Colleagues,

I hope your semester is going well. Transitioning back to in-person teaching and academic activities is a challenge – old routines and habits must be broken and new ones established. I commend your efforts and I am grateful for your commitment to easing the transition for your students.  

As we move forward into the semester, the following friendly reminders may be useful for you and your students. You may consult this quick summary for details on the public health and academic protocols and policies for this semester. Here are guidelines on quarantine and isolation.

Seating charts facilitate effective contact tracing. Please take attendance in each class, and assign seats with a seating chart if your class format allows for it. This information is invaluable for contact tracing.  Without a seating chart, potentially all members of the class will be required to participate in the contact tracing activities.

Accommodate student absences for illness without a doctor’s note. If students are not feeling well, please do not require a doctor’s note as a condition to excuse them from class. A doctor’s note will take a few days to acquire and the student’s presence in class in the interim risks transmission not only of COVID-19 but also the common colds and flu. If students test positive for COVID-19, they will receive a note from our Public Health team which will describe their applicable restrictions and precautions.  If you are a close contact of the student, you will be contacted by the Public Health team.

You are not required to accommodate absent students’ requests for synchronous remote learning. Please make course materials available to students in a form suited to the course content and pedagogy. This may include lecture recordings if appropriate for the course format.

Please let students know that if they tested positive for COVID-19 through a 3rd party vendor (not via OneMedical) they MUST report it to the Public Health Team via email to covidcarenavigator@georgetown.edu.

Do not teach in person if you feel ill, including when having symptoms consistent with the common cold or flu, and testing negative for COVID-19.  Switch to remote instruction if you do not feel well enough to teach. If you do not feel well enough to teach, please contact your department/program chair for making alternate arrangements. Please report any symptoms on the GU360 app. 

You may switch to remote instruction temporarily if you have to care for ill family members or children due to school closures. Please contact your department/program chair if you are faced with these challenges.

Quarantine is not necessary for vaccinated individuals who are exposed and asymptomatic. Please continue to teach in person if you are vaccinated and exposed and have no symptoms. Please tell your students that if they are exposed and have no symptoms, they should continue coming to class if they are vaccinated. However, those exposed must get tested 3-5 days after exposure, even if there are no symptoms.  On-campus testing is free for the GU community. 

Take this extra precaution if you live with vulnerable family members. If you are vaccinated and exposed and have no symptoms, get tested 1-2 days after exposure and then again 4-5 days after exposure, and wear a mask until you receive this second negative result.

Quarantine is necessary if you are not fully vaccinated and get exposed. In this event, please stay separate from others for 7-10 days (Care Navigators can explain the current guidelines and guide you about next steps). 

Isolation is required for anyone who has tested positive even if asymptomatic. Isolation is stricter than quarantine and is advised for 10 days since the date of the positive test. For those experiencing symptoms of COVID-19, remain in isolation for at least 10 days since the symptoms first appeared, and at least 24 hours with no fever without fever-reducing medication. Please report symptoms at COVID-19 Check-In survey and email the covidcarenavigator@georgetown.edu for help with next steps.

Daily symptom attestation is required by everyone. Please use the GU360 app (not the OneMedical app) for daily attestation.

Thank you for your dedication to our students and colleagues. Please stay safe and have a productive semester.

Sincerely,
Chandan Vaidya
Vice Provost for Faculty