ONEONTA, N.Y. – After 100 more positive cases of coronavirus were confirmed at SUNY Oneonta Thursday, SUNY Chancellor Jim Malatras announced the school would be closing campus and switching to fully remote learning for the rest of the fall semester.
Nearly 400 people have tested positive at the college since the semester started on Aug. 24.
SUNY Oneonta President Barbara Jean Morris says students who are in quarantine or isolation on campus can remain there until they are cleared to resume normal activities by the health department.
All other students who live on campus have been asked to schedule time to move out between Friday, Sept. 4 and Monday, Sept. 7.
To allow students to prepare to move off campus, Friday’s classes have been canceled.
SUNY Chancellor Jim Malatras visited the campus Thursday afternoon to announce that he has directed SUNY Oneonta to develop and implement a plan to send on-campus students home and cease all in-person classes and activities for the rest of the fall semester: https://t.co/EDDNx1Uy7C
— SUNY Oneonta (@SUNY_Oneonta) September 3, 2020
“Although this situation is unsettling, I must ask for patience and cooperation from students and families as we work to help students get home to resume remote learning as safely and quickly as possible,” said Morris, in a letter sent to the campus community Thursday.
The college has a plan in place to issue students full refunds for housing and prorated refunds for dining. Morris says more details on refunds will be released in the near future.
Morris said this is a sad day for SUNy Oneonta, "It’s been sad to get the results back but with those results we know that we are protecting our students and our community because we have the knowledge and we can isolate and we can contain, as the Chancellor said, this beast."
Morris will hold a virtual meeting with the campus community Thursday afternoon, to answer questions and concerns from students and staff.