For Undergraduates: Updating Our Plans for the Spring Semester

To Our Undergraduates:

We write today to update you regarding how Case Western Reserve will adapt to omicron’s impact in the first weeks of the new year. Spring semester will begin on time with students on campus and in residence halls. The schedule for your return to campus housing remains the same. 

Given the uncertainty about the number of COVID-19 cases in our community, most instruction will be delivered remotely for the first two weeks to minimize classroom disruption, allow faculty to prepare their course delivery, and provide an equitable experience for our students. 

We want you—and your professors—to be able to attend as many classes as possible. By allowing faculty to focus first on a single mode of instruction, we allow them to do their best teaching—and, we believe, reduce the likelihood of higher infection rates when we do return to in-person classes.

A few of your educational experiences will be in-person even during these early days of the semester—specifically, those involving lab work, clinical experiences, and performance. We will update you regarding those courses that will continue to be in person as soon as possible. 

By now you already are well familiar with the booster requirement we announced last week. In addition, you will be required to take a COVID-19 test each week for three weeks, wear masks indoors, and refrain from social gatherings for at least two weeks.

As of this writing, we expect varsity athletics to continue in person, but we recognize that our conference and/or the NCAA may provide different guidance in January. Similarly, we will update you regarding protocols for other extracurricular activities prior to the start of the semester. 

We have posted a Spring Semester FAQ page, and will update it next week as additional information becomes available.

Unless infection rates remain exceptionally high, remote teaching for in-person courses should not extend beyond the first two weeks of the semester, and our goal is that testing and other data will allow us to return to in-person classes even sooner. Part of our ability to do so depends on your compliance with prevention protocols; based on prior experience, we have high hopes.

With best wishes for the rest of your winter break,

Eric W. Kaler

Ben Vinson III