COVID-19 Guideline Follow-Up    

September 20, 2021

Based on questions asked at the Faculty Senate meeting last week, I hope to provide some clarification to the COVID-19 guidelines. While we honor the governor’s mandate that masks cannot be required nor can there be inquiries about vaccination status, masks are strongly recommended in classrooms and labs and vaccinations are highly encouraged based on the overwhelming scientific evidence that indicates such individuals are less likely to be severely ill and/or hospitalized. Vaccines are freely available locally at a variety of venues.

Face Coverings
Face coverings have been shown to help curb the spread of the virus. The university president is working to make masks available in classrooms as soon as possible.

Test Result Submissions
Those who have not already done so should submit their COVID-19 test results immediately. This includes test results of a test taken on the Galveston Campus or off campus. Mandatory testing ended Friday September 10th. If you submitted your results, you will have email confirmation of your test results. Additional questions should be directed to covidinfo@tamug.edu.

Excused Absences
Students may share information from the reporting portal as proof they are quarantining as they await test results or isolating after testing positive for COVID-19. Such information during a pandemic is an excused absence and will satisfy the documentation required in Student Rule 7. Students who furnish false information may be found in violation of Student Rule 24.4.1 and the Aggie Code of Honor.

Instructor Exposure to COVID-19
An instructor, including a teaching assistant, who is self-quarantining or self-isolating should submit the reporting form and send a notification to their department head and students that they will temporarily switch to remote class delivery for up to two weeks. The department head should acknowledge and send to the Chief Academic Officer. If at all possible, identify another instructor or teaching assistant to cover instructional duties and notify students of the changes.

Make-Up Work
Faculty are encouraged to record their lectures using Zoom or other technology and make such videos available to students who are in quarantine or isolation. See KeepTeaching for additional information.

Plexiglass Barriers
While the latest research is mixed concerning the effectiveness of stationary plexiglass barriers in large classrooms, such barriers are available for instructors that wish to use them. If you are unable to locate a barrier, please contact covidinfo@tamug.edu.  

Other questions related to the campus response to COVID-19 should be submitted to covidinfo@tamug.edu.