TCNJ will conduct classes online for two weeks in response to coronavirus concerns

Following in the footsteps of several other colleges and universities, including Princeton University, the College of New Jersey announced Tuesday that all classes will be held online for two weeks after spring break.

College of New Jersey President Kathryn Foster informed the campus community of the change in a letter Tuesday.

“Over the last several weeks, the coronavirus has made its way to our region, which I know is a concern to many. As of this writing, there are no presumptive or confirmed cases of COVID-19 on our campus and the college continues to take a number of precautionary measures to keep our community healthy. Nonetheless, given the progression of the disease, it seems highly likely that it will continue to spread and the number of cases will climb,” reads the letter. “In an effort to help slow the rate of transmission, the College of New Jersey will join with several other institutions in adopting the practice of social distancing being advocated by public health officials.”

Beginning Monday, March 23, and continuing for a period of two weeks, TCNJ will conduct all classes online.

“While the campus will remain open, students are strongly encouraged to stay home. Students who choose to return will practice social distancing and also take their classes online. Anyone who has been in contact with someone carrying COVID-19 or is exhibiting symptoms, should self-isolate and notify their doctor or student health services immediately,” reads the letter from Foster.

The college will limit large gatherings. Events, including athletic events, will be reviewed on a case-by-case basis and may be modified, postponed, or canceled as needed to promote health and safety, Foster wrote.

“Thank you for your flexibility as we adapt to a challenging set of circumstances and certain disruption,” Foster wrote. “We endeavor to fulfill our educational mission while prioritizing the health and safety of our community.”

Rutgers University officials had not yet decided whether to suspend in-class instruction as of Tuesday morning. On Monday, the president of Rutgers told all instructors to develop remote instruction plans for the rest of the spring semester in case university officials decide to make the move to virtual instruction.

Princeton University President Christopher Eisgruber announced on Monday that the university would shift to virtual learning after spring break, through at least April 5.