With one member of the University of Washington community testing positive for COVID-19, the University Advisory Committee on Communicable Diseases has decided to cancel in-person classes at its Seattle, Tacoma, and Bothell campuses for the remainder of the winter quarter, ending on March 20.
The committee released a statement on Friday morning saying that the cancellations are a way to increase precautionary health measures and ensure the successful conclusion of the term.
“Our campuses will remain open to serve all those who rely on our services, including hospitals and clinics, dining services, residence halls, library services, and recreation and athletics facilities,” the university said in the release. “Husky athletics events will proceed as scheduled.”
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“When the nature of a class is not suited for remote delivery, other options, including submitting grades based on work conducted to this point, may be used.”
The committee mentioned that faculty and graduate students will receive additional information in a follow-up message from Provost Mark Richards and Faculty Senate Chair Joseph Janes.
The University currently plans to resume normal class operations when the spring quarter begins on March 30.
The UW staff member who received a positive test for coronavirus works in the Roosevelt Commons East and was last in the building on February 28. While the building remains closed for appropriate cleaning, the employee is currently at home in self-isolation.
The news follows announcements by Microsoft, Google, Amazon, and Facebook who have urged employees to work remotely for the next three weeks, with the latter two completely shutting down their Seattle offices until at least March 9.
There are currently 70 confirmed positive cases of coronavirus in Washington, including 10 deaths.
If you are in King County and believe you were exposed to a confirmed case of COVID-19, or if you’re a healthcare provider with questions about the disease, contact the coronavirus call center at 206-477-3977.