Update to SAU travel restrictions, campus events, Testing Center, employee leave regarding health risk, childcare

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Magnolia, Ark., — The Risk Management Task Force held a specially called meeting Sunday, March 15, at 4:00 PM to address the changes in the public landscape regarding COVID-19.

As of this evening, Arkansas public schools are closed mandatorily beginning March 17 and will remain closed through March 30, and Louisiana public schools are closed until April 13.

The number of confirmed cases in all contiguous states continues to rise, and we need to remain vigilant in our mission as an institution of higher education while making decisions to protect the people who make us the caring institution we strive to be.

Effective immediately, any faculty, staff, or student who travels internationally, via public transportation, or to or through domestic areas of the significant outbreak will be required to remain off campus for a period of 14 days following travel. For example, under these guidelines, those who choose to travel to any of these locations or via these methods during Spring Break will not be allowed to return to campus until April 13.  

This is out of an abundance of caution to keep our campus as contaminant-free as possible and retain adequate staff levels to provide services.

All campus events, both internal and external, are suspended until further notice.

The Testing Center remains open to SAU students who currently use the Center’s proctoring services.

External proctoring services scheduled for the week of March 16-20 will proceed, but new appointments are suspended until further notice.

During this time, we realize many employees are concerned for the safety of themselves and their families.

We encourage all faculty, staff, and contractors working at SAU to express any concerns with supervisors.

If working from home or taking extended sick leave is necessary to protect high-risk family members or care for children displaced due to school closures, those options are readily available.

The most valuable resource we have is our people, and we stand committed to supporting decisions that keep them safe.

During this very fluid situation, please continue to monitor the University website for updates at www.saumag.edu/coronavirus. Please direct all questions via email to taskforce@saumag.edu.

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