ATLANTA — As the coronavirus spreads, elements of society from sports to schools are adjusting, with Atlanta area colleges and universities beginning to flesh out plans for moving forward.
A number have announced they will shift from in-person classes to online classes in the coming weeks, while others have announced intentions to continue ahead as normal.
Here's a breakdown of who's doing what, and when:
- University System of Georgia: Classes suspended for two weeks at all schools in the University System of Georgia - UGA, Georgia Tech, Georgia State, etc. The move was to "allow time for USG institutions to test their business continuity plans and online instruction modules and for state officials to continue to assess the current situation regarding coronavirus (COVID-19) in Georgia," the system said. Students on spring break are encouraged not to return to campus. "Students on campus are asked to depart campus by close of business Friday, March 13, 2020, and to remain away from campus until March 29, 2020," the release said.
- Spelman College: Moving to remote learning starting Monday, March 23. "One of the high-risk factors in the spread of the Coronavirus is large gatherings. Spelman’s residence halls are currently at 100% capacity and are considered large gatherings. To mitigate the risk of highly populated gatherings, we ask that students follow the guidance they will receive from the Office of Student Affairs assigning specific times for them to return to the residence halls to retrieve their belongings," the school said. However, "We understand that there are a limited number of students who may face unforeseen hardships based on extenuating circumstances and will need to remain on campus. Student Affairs has created a hardship petition form for those students who must remain in the residence halls after the scheduled time to move out. Students will receive more details about the petition process from Student Affairs."
- Morehouse College: Spring Break is being extended another week to March 20, and begin online classes on March 23. "Students are instructed not to return to campus from Spring Break and those students on campus are instructed to move out of their residences by the 9 p.m. on March 21st," the school said.
- Oglethorpe University: School is suspended for a week starting Monday, March 16 and resuming with remote classes on March 23. "Students are free to go home or to remain on campus," the school said. "A decision about whether to close our residence halls to all students except those who cannot return home has not yet been made."
- Savannah College of Art and Design: The school said it will be using an online format for all classes for the duration of the spring 2020 quarter. "Students will not be required to return to SCAD from spring break and will be released from their housing contracts; however, SCAD residence halls will remain open for those students who choose to remain in campus housing this spring.," the school said.
- Brenau University: All campuses moving to digital learning on March 23. "All students who are able to leave campus will be required to leave," the school said, but, "For those students who need to remain on campus, a waiver request is available and the university will do its best to provide them with individual single rooms."
- Reinhardt University: Reinhardt University has decided to move to online instruction temporarily in an effort to follow guidelines of achieving social distancing announced by Gov. Brian Kemp's office and public health officials.
- Agnes Scott College: Moving to online teaching for a two-week period. The university will suspend in-person classes and move to an online delivery format, following spring break, March 23 – April 3. All classes—undergraduate, graduate and post-baccalaureate—will be taught remotely during this time.
- Berry College: Berry is now extending Spring Break to March 22 and then will do virtual classes until April 3. The school president says Berry will decide on or before March 30 "regarding the remainder of the semester."
- Chattahoochee Technical College: All campuses of Chattahoochee Tech will be closed. All college campuses will reopen Monday, March 23. During the next two weeks through Saturday, April 4, as many courses as possible will be transferred to an online/virtual environment as possible. Students will be contacted by their instructors with details. Spring Break is scheduled for the week of April 5 through April 12. No classes will be held that week. Upon return from Spring Break, the college will continue with online/virtual learning with possibility of resuming face-to-face component for labs, learning outcome assessments and completing coursework if possible.
- Georgia Piedmont Technical College: All campuses will be closed to students and guests beginning Monday, March 16, and until further notice. All in-person instructional activities and campus events are suspended. Web-based courses will resume on Monday, March 23. In addition, all on-campus events and activities are cancelled or will be postponed until further notice.
- Georgia Military College: Effective immediately, all in-seat learning at each of GMC’s 14 college campuses across the state, and Corps of Cadets, has been suspended and the campuses are now closed to students. Online learning will begin Monday March 16-March 27. This includes the following locations in Albany, Augusta, Columbus, Dublin, Eastman, Fairburn, Fayetteville, Madison, Milledgeville, Sandersville, Stone Mountain, Warner Robins, Valdosta, Zebulon. In addition, the GMC Prep School in Milledgeville will be closed to students effective Tuesday, March 17 and will move all of its classes to remote learning March 27. For more information visit https://www.gmc.edu/current-students/coronavirus-info.cms
In Georgia, the risk of contracting COVID-19 remains low, according to officials. At 11Alive, we’re focusing our news coverage on the facts and not the fear around the virus. To see our full coverage, visit our coronavirus section, here: www.11Alive.com/Coronavirus.
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