NORMAL, Ill. (WCIA) — Illinois State University officials said they are extending spring break because of concerns with the coronavirus.
The break is now extended for students until March 23. In an email, ISU President Larry Dietz said all faculty, staff and graduate students will resume their normal work schedule the week of March 15. Dietz said, “there will be no classes in any format that week to allow faculty, staff members and graduate assistants involved in instruction to make the adjustment to alternative instruction.” When classes do start back up March 23, the university will transition to online instruction “and/or other instructional modalities through at least April 12,” said Dietz. He continued to say that timeline could change depending on circumstances.
In addition to the university extending their spring break, University Laboratory schools will also extend their vacation. Parents, teachers and staff will receive instruction from Superintendent Dana Kinley.
Other measures are being taken for students and staff safety. Effective March 16, all University-sponsored, “non-essential” domestic travel and all international travel has been suspended. Dietz also said all Summer 2020 study abroad programs and international internships have been cancelled.
Dietz said University-operated housing is currently closed. ISU students are asked to remain at their permanent homes until further notice and “students now living in residence halls, Cardinal Court Apartments, or University-owned apartments should return to their permanent home residences.” He continued to say that students who cannot go back home will be addressed on a case-by-case basis. Students will be informed about how they can get needed items from their University housing rooms.
Starting March 23, events at the university with 50 or more anticipated attendees are postponed through at least April 12. More information regarding event status will be provided at a later time.
Dietz said these measures are being taken with health and safety of the university community in mind as well as to “limit, to the greatest extent possible, disruption to academic progress and financial hardship.”