Throughout the 2020-21 academic year the Health Readiness Working Group (HRWG) used a framework of Campus Operating Status Levels to provide the community with a guide for understanding the key indicators that guide decision making related to COVID-19 health and safety protocols for the campus. This framework has been updated for 2021-22.

The HRWG evaluates a number of indicators in determining the appropriate operating level, and they are considered in relation to one another, not individually. They include:

  • The introduction of a large percentage of the community to the campus (e.g., move-in)
  • Prevalence of COVID-19 on campus
  • Availability of isolation and quarantine space
  • Prevalence of COVID-19 in surrounding towns
  • Prevalence of COVID-19 on other Five College campuses
  • The average number of individuals identified as close contacts
  • Scientific information regarding the effectiveness of the vaccines
  • Campus vaccination rates (including booster)
  • Ability to provide essential services
  • Ability to deliver the academic program
  • Stay-at-home orders and/or restrictions at the state or local level.
  • Local area hospital ICU capacity 
  • Availability of tests (PCR and Rapid Antigen)
  • Turn-around time for test results
  • Effectiveness of contact tracing
  • Compliance with College health and safety protocols

The College’s current Operating Status Level will always be visible on our dashboard and will be indicated in each Planning Update. We will notify the campus when there’s a change in the alert level and will share specific guidance at that time regarding any changes to protocols.

Level 1: Baseline COVID-19 Operations

This phase of campus operations signals the College’s baseline COVID-19 operations: operating with fully in-person activities and appropriate COVID-19 protocols in place. The baseline operations may change in response to improvements in the COVID-19 environment.

Level 2: Enhanced COVID-19 Precautions 

The College will move to Enhanced COVID-19 Precautions with more stringent protocols put in place if conditions suggest that there may be potential for increased exposure/cases and with the goal of preserving the ability to conduct in-person classes and to continue as many other activities in-person as possible. 

This alert level will be in effect any time a significant number of community members are returning to campus after time away from campus. 

Level 3: Elevated COVID-19 Precautions

The College will move to Elevated COVID-19 Precautions when there is significant campus or community transmission occurring. A move to this Level may also be necessitated by a reduction in the College’s ability to provide essential services due to COVID-19 related staffing shortages, significant disruptions in the supply chain for essential products or stay-at-home orders at the state or local level. Additionally, approaching or reaching capacity in quarantine and/or isolation space and the related demand on staffing to support students in quarantine and/or isolation may result in the need to modify or reduce operations.

Level 4: Extreme COVID-19 Precautions

Should strategies for controlling the spread of COVID-19 become limited or ineffective, the College may decide it must fully or partially close the campus and move to fully remote classes and activities; only essential personnel will be on campus.