TO: UIU Community
SUBJECT: President’s Communication – COVID-19 Dashboard Review
Dear UIU Community,
The purpose of this message is to address the current status of COVID-19 on the Fayette Campus. Currently, 21 positive COVID-19 cases exist among Fayette students, faculty and staff and an additional 115 individuals are currently quarantined. It is important to provide context to the numbers on the dashboard.
UIU has taken a very aggressive approach to limit the spread of COVID-19. In addition to the many safeguards and protocols initiated in classrooms and other campus facilities, efforts to combat COVID-19 include a strict and proactive student quarantine system. Students who demonstrate symptoms associated with COVID-19, along with their roommates and close contacts, are asked to quarantine.
This aggressive approach to quarantining students explains the high quarantine number on the dashboard. A high percentage of students in quarantine will likely not test positive for COVID-19. We understand that the quarantine measures may create obstacles and inconvenience for students and those instructing them, this cautious approach is the right thing to do for the health and well-being of the campus community. There is no question that early quarantines have prevented additional spread of COVID-19 on campus. I want to thank you for your patience and understanding as part of this effort. At this time, 49 students are scheduled to be released from quarantine on Wednesday, and another 47 students are scheduled to be released on Friday, should they continue to meet health protocols.
UIU currently has a small number of individuals who have tested positive for COVID-19; many of the positive cases are linked within the same athletics teams and among roommates living in the same house or suite. In nearly all cases, individuals were quarantined for multiple days in advance of receiving a positive test result, demonstrating that the quarantine system is working. Students testing positive are moved to designated isolation areas on campus or isolate in their off-campus housing, and are only released from isolation when they meet CDC and public health protocols.
The COVID Planning Team will continue to monitor the data behind the dashboard report. Should we see trends indicating that COVID transmission is becoming widespread, additional steps to safeguard the campus community will be taken. However, at this time it is in the best interest of our students to continue course delivery in its current form. The most important thing that can be done is continued diligent adherence to campus health and safety protocols.
Lastly, I want to acknowledge the tremendous efforts of our faculty and staff over these first three weeks of the fall semester. I have been amazed by the positive, can-do approach of our personnel. I want to give special thanks to all the members of the UIU CARE Team and those supporting their efforts. A member of the UIU CARE Team is assigned to every quarantined and isolated student to make sure their needs are met while they comply with quarantine and isolation rules. It is important that we continue to provide an exceptional educational experience for our students, and our UIU CARE Team and faculty are ensuring that this occurs even when a student may be in quarantine or isolation. This is not an easy undertaking, and it is appreciated!
Please do not hesitate to reach out with any questions or concerns. I will continue to provide updates as we work through this unprecedented time.
Thank you for your continued efforts to help ensure the safety and welfare of our Peacock Family!
William R. Duffy II, Ed.D., Ed.S.
Upper Iowa University