Sept. 15, 2020
Dear students, faculty and staff,
Because of a significant rise in COVID-19 cases linked primarily to CU Boulder students, and to protect the health and safety of the community, CU Boulder is fully cooperating with a Boulder County Public Health recommendation issued today: We will be moving to a 14-day quarantine period for our students who live in the city of Boulder. The quarantine period does not apply to CU Boulder faculty or staff.
In a joint news release, Boulder County Public Health strongly recommends that all local CU Boulder undergraduate and graduate students immediately self-quarantine for two weeks in their campus-area home or residence hall. CU Boulder will be enforcing this measure, which expires at 11:59 p.m. on Tuesday, Sept. 29.
Additionally, any Boulder County resident (including CU students who live off campus, faculty and staff) who is interested in getting a test is encouraged to visit a new testing site. Full details, including hours and location, are available at the Boulder County COVID-19 testing webpage. We strongly encourage CU students who live off campus, faculty and staff to use the new site while it is available.
Quarantine period guidelines
Quarantine is not the same as isolation. Quarantine is avoiding in-person interactions with others, monitoring yourself for symptoms and following health precautions like washing your hands, covering your coughs and sneezes, disinfecting shared spaces and not sharing household items. Isolation occurs when a person has a confirmed case of COVID-19.
Local CU Boulder students may leave their residences only to:
- Attend in-person classes, labs, research activities and intercollegiate athletic trainings.
- Obtain food (delivery or curbside pickup), medicine, medical care and emergency supplies that cannot be delivered. This includes seeking COVID-19-related testing.
- Work and take children to school/child care.
- Exercise by yourself. The Rec Center remains open.
When in public to carry out any of these permitted activities, you need to maintain a physical distance of at least 6 feet from others and wear a face covering.
No students are allowed to gather for social purposes during this period. This prohibition includes social gatherings among people who reside in buildings with 10 or more unrelated occupants.
During this period, in-person campus events (other than the allowable activities listed above) are canceled.
The campus will continue to support students with dining, monitoring, testing, medical care and mental health services. Additionally, virtual events and programs will be offered for students to engage outside of the classroom in the safest way possible.
Expectations and enforcement
The expectation is that you follow campus and public health guidelines. The CU Boulder COVID-19 health and safety policy requires all members of our community to follow public health orders from state, county and city public health officials, as well as all directives from the university intended to prevent or mitigate the spread of COVID-19, including participation in testing and contact tracing.
Students have received many weeks of training, education and support on compliance with public health protocols. The vast majority are doing the right thing to keep our community safe, and we thank you.
So far, 422 students have been referred for student code of conduct violations due to not following public health orders.
Because of the serious public health risks involved, students found in violation of COVID-19 protocols that endanger our community will face strict enforcement of the student code of conduct and the campus health and safety policy, which may include exclusion from campus, probation—which can impact future study abroad or attending graduate school—and suspension from the university pending adjudication.
Rising cases makes quarantine necessary
Today’s additional public health measure is necessary to change behaviors that are contributing to the increase in cases. Swift action and immediate change in behavior is necessary. Positive cases of CU Boulder students have increased and most of the cases are among individuals living off campus.
Stricter measures may be necessary
In partnership with city, county and state public health agencies, we are prepared to rapidly respond to COVID-19 in a way that best protects our community based upon the latest information.
Boulder County Public Health is prepared to take additional steps, including mandatory stay-at-home orders, if we do not improve the situation.
We’ll continue to add more information to our COVID-19 updates and resources webpage throughout the week, and please reach out to us with your questions and concerns.
We want to thank you for your cooperation at this juncture. We can persevere if we are Buffs together and follow reasonable health guidelines during this pandemic.
Associate Vice Chancellor for Integrity, Safety and Compliance