SUNY spring semester to begin February 1 with weekly COVID testing for students, faculty, and staff

Posted at 3:08 PM, Jan 25, 2021
and last updated 2021-01-25 15:08:47-05

NEW YORK (WKBW) — State University of New York Chancellor Jim Malatras announced Sunday there will be weekly COVID testing at all SUNY campuses for all students, faculty and staff who regularly go to campus for the spring semester.

The start date of in-person classes for the spring semester was previously pushed back to February 1.

Other protocols in place for the spring semester include:

  • Pre-testing of all students prior to the start of the semester.
  • Mandatory pre-semester quarantine of students.
  • Mandatory mask wearing at all times, even when socially distanced.
  • No spring break.
  • Uniform compliance and enforcement standards.
  • Expanded mental health and wellness services.
  • Student’s bill of rights for greater transparency.

“As our campuses are beginning their spring semesters, we are both excited for our students, and also aware of the challenges that still lie ahead because of COVID,” said Chancellor Malatras. “That is why we have developed comprehensive reopening plans to put the health and safety of our students, faculty, and staff first. And, it is the reason we have already increased the frequency of testing on our campuses, and why we will continue to adapt to the ever-changing circumstances, like new strains and higher levels of cases.”

Officials say since August 2020 SUNY has conducted 723,891 tests with a 0.57 positivity rate.

"SUNY will revisit the 100 percent weekly testing requirement depending on the positivity rate in the state and regions throughout the course of the semester," a release from SUNY says.