Guide to the Fall 2021 Semester
Kutztown University will return to a primarily face-to-face environment for the 2021 fall semester. While some health and wellness protocols may remain in place, KU's course offerings and residential experience will more-closely reflect its traditional on-campus environment.
Kutztown University strongly encourages members of its campus community to get vaccinated. While the university does not currently have the legal authority to mandate the COVID-19 vaccine of its students and employees, the COVID-19 vaccine is an important tool to help us end the pandemic and return to a primarily face-to-face environment for the fall semester.
In addition, Kutztown University will host on-campus vaccine clinics this fall (details below). Learn more.
Student Vaccination Card Submission
Health and Wellness Services asks all students to provide an update of their COVID-19 vaccination status by completing a short questionnaire and submitting a copy of their vaccination record, if applicable. Students can complete the questionnaire at https://covid-questionnaire.kutztown.edu. Please note, you will need to login with your KU username and password.
Students should make an appointment with Clinical Services, located at Beck Hall, by calling 610-683-4082. Well and sick exam rooms have been established to minimize exposure.
Students experiencing COVID-like symptoms should contact Clinical Services, Beck Hall, for examination and testing at 610-683-4082. The hours of operation are 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m., Monday through Friday. When Clinical Services is closed, students who live on campus should contact their community assistant; students who live off campus should contact their health care provider. If you have an emergency, call 911.
Students who are sick should stay home and not attend class until they are no longer experiencing symptoms. Students should contact their professor(s) to work out a plan for absenteeism.
If a student is advised by an outside healthcare provider to quarantine or isolate due to possible COVID-19 exposure, tests positive for COVID-19, or believes they have been in close contact with someone who has tested positive for COVID-19, regardless of vaccination status, they should contact Clinical Services by phone (610-683-4082) or email (firstname.lastname@example.org).
Contact tracing guidelines will be followed based on guidance from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), Pennsylvania Department of Health (PA DOH) and the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania.
For the 2021 fall semester, the university will continue its contact tracing process utilized in the 2020-21 year. KU conducts contact tracing for KU students and employees, for their exposure to other KU students and employees (PA DOH conducts contact tracing for all non-KU-affiliated contacts).
Once the KU Health Center and/or Human Resources speak with the positive individual, the contact tracing process begins. If a student is deemed to be a close contact of any KU student or employee who has tested positive, the student will be notified by the KU Health Center. If an employee is deemed to be a close contact of any KU student or employee who has tested positive, the employee will be notified by Human Resources.
KU offers diagnostic testing for students who are symptomatic for COVID-19. Students experiencing symptoms should make an appointment to be tested with Clinical Services, located at Beck Hall, by calling 610-683-4082. KU offers asymptomatic testing to those who have been in close contact with someone who has COVID-19, per CDC testing protocols. In addition, the university follows NCAA protocols for its student-athletes and coaches, which includes asymptomatic testing within this population. KU Health Center staff notify the Pennsylvania Department of Health of positive cases on campus and assist with contact tracing.
KU also offers voluntary asymptomatic COVID-19 testing on a weekly basis for all KU students and employees (details). Students or employees seeking additional asymptomatic testing have options in Kutztown, including Rite Aid (23 North Elm St.) and CVS Pharmacy (45 Constitution Blvd.).
In Spring 2021, KU conducted asymptomatic testing per guidance from the Pennsylvania Department of Health, Department of Education and the State System of Higher Education. KU conducted more than 6,000 tests on campus, resulting in 16 positives. University health officials continue to monitor guidance and infection rates on campus and will modify protocols accordingly.
Kutztown University utilizes guidance from the CDC for its mask protocols.
Masks are required inside all university buildings for all individuals, regardless of vaccination status, based on Berks County's current COVID-19 transmission rate and CDC guidance.
- Individuals are required to wear masks indoors, including in all classrooms, meeting rooms, common areas in residence halls and indoor events.
- Masks are not required outdoors. CDC recommends that people who are not fully vaccinated wear a mask in crowded outdoor settings. The university supports all members of the campus community who choose to wear a mask outdoors.
- Individuals may remove their mask when in a private space, but masks must be worn when other individuals enter the space. This includes employee offices and secluded student study areas.
- Resident students may remove their mask when in their room with their roommate. Visitors are permitted, but masks must be worn when individuals are not in their room.
Face shields are acceptable alternatives to masks under special circumstances. Requests to wear a face shield, instead of a mask, should be directed to Human Resources at email@example.com.
Masks will remain required while the CDC advises that they be worn in our area. Should the situation improve, the university will adjust its protocols to align with current CDC guidance.
Students with a disability who cannot wear a mask, or cannot safely wear a mask, because of a disability as defined by the Americans with Disabilities Act, should contact KU’s Office of Disability Services at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Students and employees advised to quarantine or isolate must return home and follow guidelines of the CDC (available online). Clinical Services, along with Housing and Residence Life, have identified limited facilities for resident students that cannot isolate or quarantine off-campus; approval of these accommodations will be on a case-by-case basis.
Employees experiencing COVID-like symptoms should contact their healthcare provider for diagnosis, testing and/or treatment. If an employee is advised to quarantine or isolate due to possible COVID-19 exposure, tests positive for COVID-19, or believes they have been in close contact with someone who has tested positive for COVID-19, they should contact Human Resources by phone (610-683-1353) or email (email@example.com).
Resources for teaching faculty can be found here.
CAMPUS ENVIRONMENT MODIFICATIONS
KU will continue to provide existing health and wellness strategies across campus in 2021-22. Plexiglass dividers will remain in place and hand sanitizer and sanitizing wipes will be present in classrooms and available for department use. All students and employees are strongly encouraged to clean shared desk areas/work stations upon entering classrooms.
COVID Related HVAC Operations Plan
There are many types of HVAC systems located on the Kutztown University campus. While these systems are numerous and varied, they were professionally designed to the standards in place at the time. Because of the variance in the systems and their modes of operation, the adjustments that can be made to the systems in response to COVID-19 will vary as well. The COVID Related HVAC Operations Plan for 2021-2022, first implemented in July 2020 in response to COVID-19, was developed based upon CDC guidance and recommendations. Read the operations plan here.
Personal Protective Equipment
Kutztown University has personal protective equipment (PPE) available for students and employees. Students can pick-up a mask or face shield at the KU Card Office, 107 Academic Forum.
Available supplies for employee requests include black cloth masks, disposable masks, 16 oz. hand sanitizers with pumps, 90- or 100-count wipes and face shields. Employees, departments and offices can request PPE by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org. Supplies will be delivered by the mailroom/storeroom directly to your department. KU's Emergency Management Team recommends all departments and offices to have a supply of disposable masks and hand sanitizer pumps.
Classroom PPE will continue to be replenished by the Facilities custodial staff.
Students and employees can resume university-related domestic travel. At this time, university-related international travel is not encouraged. Employees pursuing international travel should contact their supervisor for approval.
Questions can be directed to KU's Office of University Relations at email@example.com.