Happy New Year Concordia Cardinals!
Now that Winterim is underway, we are busy preparing to welcome more students back to campus for in-person living and learning together in the Spring 2022 semester. There are a lot of details in this COVID update, so take a few minutes, maybe grab some coffee or hot cocoa, and read carefully.
We have adopted the revised CDC guidance for quarantine and isolation that came out on December 27, 2021. This means that quarantine and isolation times have changed. We are also closely monitoring the developments of a federal mandate that may significantly impact our COVID-19 policies, should it go into effect.
Therefore, the President’s COVID-19 task force is focusing on two primary strategies to keep our campuses open and vibrant for the rest of the academic year: mitigation and compliance.
Thanks to solid guidance by the CDC and state and local health officials and YOUR efforts, we were able to successfully manage the viral spread of COVID-19 on campus last semester. Barring any added federal mandates and in alignment with current guidelines, Spring 2022 campus policies will include:
- Face coverings – We will continue to require masks in classrooms, labs, and gathering spaces (including Chapel, library, sporting events, and in-person meetings), and strongly encourage masks in all indoor public spaces. Please remember to bring appropriate face coverings with you when you return to campus!
- Vaccination – We will continue to encourage all students, faculty, and staff to get fully vaccinated (including the booster).
- Daily Symptom Tracker – We will continue to require all Concordians to complete their daily symptom tracker. Please note that isolation and quarantine protocols have been adjusted in accordance with revised CDC guidelines.
If you test positive for COVID-19:
Everyone, regardless of vaccination status.
- Stay home for 5 days.
- If you have no symptoms or your symptoms are resolving after 5 days, you can leave your house.
- Continue to wear a mask around others for 5 additional days.
If you have a fever, continue to stay home until your fever resolves.
If you were exposed to someone with COVID-19/close contact:
If you have no symptoms and:
Have been boosted OR
Completed the primary series of Pfizer or Moderna vaccine within the last 6 months OR
Completed the primary series of J&J vaccines within the last 2 months
- Wear a mask around others for 10 days.
- Test on day 5, if possible.
If you develop symptoms get a test and stay home.
If you have no symptoms and:
Completed the primary series of Pfizer or Moderna vaccine over 6 months ago and are not boosted OR
Completed the primary series of J&J over 2 months ago and are not boosted OR
- Stay home for 5 days. After that continue to wear a mask around others for 5 additional days.
- If you can’t quarantine you must wear a mask for 10 days.
- Test on day 5 if possible.
If you develop symptoms get a test and stay home
Anyone who is fully vaccinated and boosted is exempt from quarantine.
While Concordia’s COVID mitigation strategy is closely aligned with the recommendations of the CDC and state and local officials, we are also obligated to prepare for the Vaccination and Testing Emergency Temporary Standard (ETS), should it go into effect. Concordia will not implement these policies until we are required to do so by law.
OSHA’s Emergency Temporary Standard
On Friday, Dec. 17, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit dissolved the Fifth Circuit’s stay of the Vaccination and Testing Emergency Temporary Standard (ETS). Barring any further injunctions, The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) will move ahead with implementing the ETS, which mandates that all employers with more than 100 employees require every employee to either be vaccinated against COVID-19 or wear face covers while at work and be tested for COVID-19 at least one time per week.
It is unclear if the law will be implemented or not. The President’s COVID-19 task force is closely monitoring the situation and making plans for implementation should we be mandated to do so. Please continue to check your email for any updates.
During this quieter month, we hope you stay healthy and that you are able to enjoy some peace and restoration. We look forward to seeing you very soon.