Amid the ongoing coronavirus pandemic, Kennesaw State announced through email Thursday, March 12, that the university will close in accordance with USG policy and begin having classes online Wednesday, March 18.
“Following consultation with the University System of Georgia, Kennesaw State University will suspend instruction Monday, March 16 and Tuesday, March 17 in order to implement alternative plans to allow for remote learning,” the email from the Office of the President reads.
No reported COVID-19 cases have been confirmed on either campus at KSU.
Until further notice, KSU students are to have classes remotely. KSU’s regular spring break starting Saturday, March 28, is to still occur as scheduled.
KSU said it will still ensure students meet their necessary academic requirements while paying special attention to graduating students during this time.
Students who live on campus have been instructed to leave their residential dorms by 5 p.m. Friday, March 13, and to not return until at least Sunday, March 29, although the email makes it clear that students may have to stay away from campus longer.
Residential students are instructed to only take items they need with them that will assist in their online classes. They do not have to move all of their items out of dorms.
KSU also has a plan in place to help residential students who cannot leave campus and for those who do not have access to the internet outside of school to do work.
“We will maintain housing and limited dining and health services for these students,” the email reads.
Students who are unable to leave campus have been instructed to fill out an accommodation form so that they can have the proper food accommodations made for them.
Students without access to the internet are being told to email the campus IT Service at email@example.com so students can find out what computer labs on campus are open and available to them.
Meetings and events held by campus registered student organizations are canceled or postponed until further notice, according to the Office of the President’s email.
The email also advises students with further questions to reach out to the Division of Student Affairs at firstname.lastname@example.org.
The decision to close KSU came only about seven hours after the Office of Student Affairs released a statement saying the USG instructed all 26 USG institutions to remain open for face-to-face instruction.
At around 5 p.m. today, the USG changed its decision and announced that Georgia Governor Brian Kemp has permitted Georgia schools, state agencies and local communities to close their institutions if they so choose.
The USG strongly encourages students who are still on spring break to remain away from campus, according to the USG’s website on COVID-19 updates.
Georgia private schools are also taking precautions for the virus.
Emory University, whose students are currently on spring break, has extended its spring break until Sunday, March 22, and classes will transition to remote learning on Monday, March 23, according to the Emory Wheel.
The Savannah College of Art and Design will also extend its spring break by one week and will then switch to online classes, according to WJCL 22. SCAD’s spring commencement ceremony will be canceled.
The University of Georgia is currently on spring break and students were to return Monday, March 16 — the day USG said campuses will close.
Now, UGA is instructing students, faculty and staff who traveled abroad for spring break to not return to campus, according to a message put out by the university.
Common signs of infection include fever, cough, shortness of breath and difficulty breathing, according to the World Health Organization.
The first death in Georgia due to coronavirus occurred today at WellStar Kennestone Hospital in Marietta, according to CBS 46. The victim was a 67-year-old man who had underlying health conditions.
For campus updates and tips on how to stay safe from COVID-19, visit KSU’s website for Coronavirus Information and Resources.
Keep following the Sentinel for updates.