The Board of Regents of the Texas A&M University has voted to reopen all 11 university campuses for the fall semester.
With the reopening plan comes a number of adjustments in order to follow social distancing guidelines.
The approved plan includes: smaller classes, longer class days, Saturday classes, adjustments to the academic calendar, and a phased-in arrival on campus in August and again in January.
The board also says that each university should determine if face coverings are required in certain settings or just recommended.
Also, the board insists students and staff be required to certify they have not been infected by COVID-19, have any symptoms, or been in close contact with someone that does. The plan also recommends that students don't leave during the semester.
According to the release from Texas A&M, universities and agencies are directed to prepare facilities, obtain cleaning supplies and protective equipment, and develop processes and protocols for implementation of this guidance.
As part of that preparation, the institutions are asked to:
Adjust maximum capacity for each classroom or lab in accordance with COVID-19 physical distancing guidance from public health authorities,
remove or “block off” classroom furniture to limit seating to the adjusted maximum capacity, add barriers where possible to encourage the separation of individuals, and disinfect teaching spaces several times each day.
Libraries, recreation facilities, and student centers will be open.
Activities such as clubs, lectures, fraternities/sororities, study sessions, and intramurals will be provided as much as is practical and safe. All face-to-face co-curricular activities must observe the precautions recommended by local health authorities, including physical distancing and face coverings.
Food service will resume, but with an emphasis on take-away options. There should be barriers between cashiers and customers and limited seating.
For more information go to the A&M website: https://www.tamu.edu/