Together, we are UB:

Classroom guidance for faculty

Protecting the university community

Published August 19, 2021

UB’s health and safety guidelines – which include protocols for face coverings, vaccinations, surveillance testing, building ventilation and wastewater testing – will significantly reduce the risk of infection and serious illness among the campus community.

However, there inevitably will be positive coronavirus cases at the university.

The FAQ below describe steps to take when a faculty member learns that one of their students has tested positive. 

FAQ

  • How will UB keep me updated about the number of positive cases at the university?

    The university’s COVID-19 dashboard will be updated daily to report new cases among UB students and employees.

    UB students, faculty and staff are reminded to monitor their health each day, stay home if they are sick, practice good hand hygiene and follow UB’s guidelines on face coverings and other protocols. 

    Updated August 19, 2021

    positive cases dashboard communicate
  • Are quarantine and/or isolation considered excusable class absences by UB?

    Yes.

    Please note -All UB students are required to be vaccinated for COVID-19 to attend classes in person and participate in on-campus activities in the fall, according to a SUNY mandate. Full approval of the vaccine has been granted by the FDA. Students requesting a vaccine exemption will not be allowed on campus while the request is being reviewed. Therefore, these students will not be able to attend in-person classes during that time. Such absences are considered excusable.

    Updated August 23, 2021

    classroom positive sick ill excuse missed absence
  • What if a student feels sick?

    Encourage them to stay out of class and get tested immediately for COVID-19. All students, regardless of vaccination status, should closely monitor their health and get tested if they develop symptoms.

    Any student who receives a positive COVID-19 test result should report it via UB’s confidential COVID-19 reporting form.

    Updated August 19, 2021

    classroom positive sick ill
  • What concessions should I make for a student who is out of class with COVID-19 or is quarantining?

    Though dependent on the circumstances of the course, faculty should use all means at their disposal to allow students to make up work and engage in class if students are unable to participate in course activities while in isolation or quarantine.

    Updated August 19, 2021

    classroom positive sick ill
  • Has UB addressed ventilation and air flow in the classroom, labs and other learning spaces to help reduce transmission?

    Yes. Ventilation systems have been adjusted to increase the flow of outside air into the buildings, per CDC recommendations.

    Updated August 19, 2021

    classroom ventilation airflow
  • If I learn that one of my students tested positive for COVID-19, what should I tell the rest of my class?

    Please inform students that the risk of transmission within classrooms is still considered very low because all UB students are expected to be masked and, with few exceptions, fully vaccinated. Also, in order to protect the privacy of the student who tests positive, faculty should not share the identity of the student in any communication to the class.

    Updated August 19, 2021

    classroom positive sick ill
  • If there is a positive case in the class, do the other students have to quarantine?

    No. As long as students in the class were properly masked and were sufficiently distanced from the person who tested positive. As per Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) guidelines, fully vaccinated individuals who are identified by the Erie County Department of Health as close contacts (within 6 feet of the positive individual for more than 15 consecutive minutes) are not subject to quarantine.

    Unvaccinated students and instructors who are not vaccinated will be required to quarantine if they are identified as close contacts by the department of health.

    Positive case notification

    • The spread of infection is expected to be low on campus due to vaccine requirements and indoor masking policies. However, positive COVID-19 cases on campus are anticipated.
    • Notifications will not necessarily be sent out for each reported case.
    • The university will continue to report the number of on-campus positive cases to the COVID-19 dashboard.

    If a student or instructor tests positive:

    • Vaccinated individuals identified by Erie County Department of Health as close contacts in a classroom or other indoor learning environment are advised to monitor their health and get tested.  Close contacts who are not fully vaccinated will be asked to quarantine.  As per Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) guidelines, fully vaccinated individuals who are identified as close contacts are not subject to quarantine.

    Monitoring health

    • All students and employees, regardless of vaccination status, should closely monitor their health, stay home if they develop symptoms of COVID-19 and get tested immediately.
    • Any student who receives a positive COVID-19 test result should report it via UB’s confidential reporting form.
    • Any employee who receives a positive COVID-19 test result should report it to their supervisor and to UB’s Office of Human Resources. 

    Updated September 9, 2021

    classroom positive sick ill quarantine
  • What should I tell students who say they are immunocompromised or have other medical conditions that do not allow them to complete course requirements?

    Refer them to Accessibility Resources for assistance with accommodations.

    Updated August 19, 2021

    classroom positive sick ill immunocompromised