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Health and Safety Guidelines for Learning Environments

COVID-19 Summary Health and Safety Guidelines for Fall 2020 (updated 8/10/20)


Provide safety and prevention guidance and protocols for in person teaching and learning environments. 

General Guidance

  • Occupancy limits for educational spaces will be determined based on the requirement to maintain six feet of physical distancing. 
  • Approved face coverings are required indoors (minimum of cloths masks, clear masks, or surgical masks). 
  • The exception is private offices or situations where no contact with others is anticipated. 
  • State and local guidance is evolving and could require updates to this document.

Indoor Classrooms

  • Students are required to wear appropriate face coverings at all times when inside academic buildings and classrooms. 
  • Faculty are expected to maintain physical distancing of six feet from students and are required to appropriate face coverings when in classrooms and public spaces within academic buildings.

Outdoor Classrooms/Canopies

  • Students are required to wear appropriate face coverings if they cannot consistently maintain a physical distance of 6 feet.
  • Faculty are also expected to consistently maintain physical distancing of six feet from students.
  • While face masks are not required in outdoor spaces if a physical distance of at least 6 feet can be maintained, it is recommended that they be worn for gatherings of larger groups (> 10) that last longer than 10 minutes.

Update Notes

  • There has not been sufficient evidence produced that face shields (open at the bottom) or clear barriers provide protection from aerosol dispersion, so these are not being considered as an alternative to the use of masks  
  • Clear masks are available upon request. The current model available can be viewed at https://www.theclearmask.com
  • Other models of clear masks are being researched for procurement.

Laboratories/Studios/Specialized Department Spaces: 

  • Task specific Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) must be worn in accordance with department guidelines. 
  • The same guidelines for classrooms also apply to department spaces in regard to physical distancing and masks or face coverings. With the potential in these spaces of breaching six foot distancing, the County guidance of limiting interaction closer than six feet to no more than ten minutes will be in effect. 
  • Protocols for music spaces (choral and instrumental) are addressed in separate guidance. 

Contact Information

Office of the Dean of Faculty

Buttrick Hall
198 College Hill Road
Clinton, NY 13323

Mon.-Fri.: 8:30 a.m.-4:30 p.m.
315-859-4601 315-859-4677
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