COVID-19 is one of the many illnesses that the university helps students and employees manage on a daily basis. The Public Health Advisory Team has partnered with W&M’s emergency management team to respond if conditions require university operations to adapt.
One-column table with instructions for faculty and staff
How to Protect Yourself
Keep current on COVID-19 vaccinations and boosters. Visit Vaccinate Virginia for local vaccination sites in the Commonwealth.
Monitor for symptoms of COVID-19.
Test if you suspect COVID-19. Find tests at retail pharmacies, your medical provider or for free at Williamsburg Regional Library. The federal government has relaunched its free COVID-19 test program. Up to four free tests may be ordered per household/address. Visit covid.gov/tests for more information or to place an order.
Maintain good hygiene, including handwashing and use of hand sanitizer.
Wear a mask over the nose and mouth. Masking is always welcome anywhere at William & Mary and the last few years have clearly shown that masks dramatically reduce the spread of airborne infections, including COVID-19.
Disinfect personal areas such as residence hall rooms and bathrooms, phones, keyboards, desks and offices frequently.
Do not attend work, class or gatherings if you are sick. Test if you suspect COVID-19.
If You Are a Close Contact
If you are advised that you are a close contact of someone who has tested positive for COVID-19, the next steps depend on your vaccination status. Visit the CDC’s Isolation and Exposure Calculator.
Guidelines for Faculty Responding to Student Illness
W&M students who test positive for COVID-19 need to isolate and not attend in-person classes for at least five days. Unvaccinated or unboostered students also quarantine if they are identified as close contacts. Visit the CDC’s Isolation Guide and Exposure Calculator for information.
Please accommodate students who need to miss class for a short period of time, as with any other illness. If you have a group of students who are out, consider recording lectures and/or using other means to provide instructional content. All public classrooms are equipped with lecture-recording technology, and the Studio for Teaching & Learning Innovation and W&M Information Technology can help optimize Blackboard.
Please respect the medical privacy of students who have tested positive for COVID-19 or have been identified as a close contact. Please do not share with the class that a fellow student is in quarantine or isolation, nor make testing or other recommendations based on that information. Students are no longer required to visit ReportCOVID if they have tested positive with COVID-19 or believe they have been a close contact of someone who has tested positive.
The following guidelines may provide faculty with options for facilitating student access to academic activities while they are isolating or under quarantine. These are intended as suggestions, not requirements:
Lectures: If lectures for the course have been recorded in the past (even if taught by another instructor or with a slightly different syllabus), consider making them available on the course’s Blackboard site as a resource to students with the caveat that they are a course tool and not the course itself. Ensure before doing so that permission has been obtained from the instructor (if different) and that the recording does not implicate the privacy interests of any student or other individual captured in the recording.
Groups: If the course involves significant group work, encourage the absent student to engage with their group via Zoom, email or Google Docs in order to lessen disruption to assignments.
Materials: Students can have access to current class materials, including slides, with class sessions recorded and shared using technology such as Panopto or even a cell phone recording. In some classes, students may be able to Zoom or FaceTime a classmate to be present.
Notes: Identify a set of students attending class who are willing to share their notes and create a space on Blackboard for them to do so. Students may also be willing to answer questions about the material via email or Zoom.
Office Hours: Hold office hours remotely with absent students to address additional questions.