Back to School: A Health and Safety Reminder
by Alyssa Dillon
On Jan. 19, 2021, in-person classes will resume at Cornish. As we prepare to return to school this coming week, it’s the perfect time for a refresher on some of the health and safety measures we’re taking during the COVID-19 pandemic.
“For Cornish students, person-to-person interaction with their faculty mentors has always been a vital element of their education,” said William Seigh, provost and vice president of academic affairs in a press release last summer. “We are committed to maintaining the Cornish experience of small class sizes and mentorship, while also embracing this opportunity to adapt our curricula and expand our methodologies to respond to the question of what arts education will look like in the post-pandemic world.”
After transitioning to fully remote classes last March, Cornish faculty and staff worked hard last summer to design a fall curriculum that combined in-person and online learning in alignment with both the high quality of education Cornish offers, while also adhering to important safety protocols. This hybrid learning approach encourages social distancing by reducing the number of people on campus. Classes that are able to be fully remote, are, and those that require in-person instruction have been modified to incorporate social distancing.
For those of you returning to campus, this spring semester will look much the same as it did in the fall. Whether this is your first or last semester here at Cornish, it’s important that you take a few minutes to familiarize yourself with what to expect this spring, and how you can help keep our campus safe.
A Daily Self-Screening
If you are coming on campus for any reason—whether for an in-person class, or to grab a meal in the cafe—you must complete a self-screening test each day before you come inside.
One Medical, with a site across the street from the College, has been selected as our independent screening, testing, and patient care tool for students, staff, and faculty. One Medical is an app-based platform, with a web browser option (for access from a computer), that includes a daily health screening assessment to monitor for COVID-19 symptoms. All students, faculty, and staff will be required to complete the assessment before coming to campus. All members of the Cornish community are strongly encouraged to use this crucial tool daily.
Learn more about One Medical in this video by Theater Student and Marketing Content Creator Winter Mallon, who walks viewers through the process of registering, downloading, and using the One Medical app for daily self-screening.
Self-Reporting Symptoms and Exposures
In addition to the One Medical app, the Washington State Department of Health offers a new tool that works through smartphones, without sharing any personal information, to alert users if they may have been exposed to COVID-19. Learn how it works, how it helps, and see frequently asked questions at WAnotify.org.
Using One Medical or WAnotify is not a replacement for self-reporting. Students who need to report a potential exposure or positive test result should use the form posted here. Faculty and staff should self-report directly to the Office of Human Resources.
Everyone on campus is required to wear a face mask or face covering. Face coverings should fit properly—covering your nose and mouth, and fitting under the chin. Disposable and/or cloth masks will be provided by the College, if needed. The CDC recommends face coverings only be worn for one day at a time and properly laundered before being used again. Having a week’s supply of cloth face coverings can help reduce the need for daily laundering.
Wearing a mask is not a substitute for physical distancing. Keeping space between you and others is one of the best tools we have to avoid being exposed to the COVID-19 virus and slowing its spread. Since people can spread the virus before they know they are sick, it is important to stay away from others when possible, even if you have no symptoms.
Areas around campus—including studios, labs, elevators, stairwells, and classrooms—have been marked with social distancing guidelines. While on campus, please stay at least 6 feet in all directions from other people and adhere to campus signage.
The Operations team has intensified cleaning, sanitizing and disinfection of all college spaces. Hand sanitizer, gloves, tissues, and disinfecting wipes have been strategically placed around the campus and at every building entrance. While Operations staff sanitize high touch surfaces throughout the day, some spaces—such as studios and labs—may require you to sanitize the equipment and surfaces you use. Before you leave, follow signage to make sure the spaces you use are ready for the next person.
A Safe Campus
Though vaccines are beginning to be distributed throughout the country and we are starting to see the light at the end of the tunnel, the pandemic is not over yet. It’s important for each and every one of us to remain vigilant in our efforts to keep our campus safe and our community members healthy.
To learn more about the Spring Reopening, visit our frequently asked questions page here. You can also view or download our Comprehensive Reopening Plan for a more detailed look at campus safety policies and procedures.
We all have a part to play in keeping Cornish healthy. Thank you for your collective efforts to have a safe community!