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TAMUT FALL 2021 COVID-19 MANAGEMENT AND GUIDANCE PLAN

Texas A&M University-Texarkana is scheduled to resume in-person classes at normal capacity for the fall 2021 semester. Considering the continued infection rates in the nation and recent Centers for Disease Control and Prevention guidelines, the university is asking the campus community to do its part by taking important steps to keep TAMUT healthy and safe.

While A&M-Texarkana does not require you to be vaccinated or to wear masks, you are strongly encouraged to do your part to keep our university community safe by getting vaccinated, wearing a mask while in public indoor settings, and frequently washing your hands. These actions are known to be effective in reducing the spread of COVID-19.

We will continue to monitor the situation both on campus and in the larger community. As conditions may warrant changes to these guidelines, please be on the lookout for future updates posted on the university’s COVID-19 information page.

Requirements for everyone as we return to campus in the fall:

  • Students, faculty and staff must participate in the mandatory randomly- selected COVID-19 testing program at intervals designated by Texas A&M University-Texarkana.
  • Students, faculty and staff who test positive for COVID-19, have COVID-19 symptoms, or who have had close contact with someone who received a positive test result for COVID-19 are required to log on to the TAMUT COVID-19 Reporting Portal and complete the TAMUT COVID-19 Report Form.
  • Students, faculty and staff who test positive or have been identified as a close contact are required to quarantine/isolate consistent with the most current CDC guidance.

Mandatory COVID-19 Testing

All students, staff and faculty are required to participate in TAMUT’s mandatory COVID-19 testing program.  A random sample of names will be selected at regular intervals for testing at the university’s on-site testing facility. Selected individuals will have a window of time during which they can schedule their on-campus COVID-19 test.

Positive test results will be reported to the Department of State Health Services and to the university Compliance Director so that proper contact tracing protocols can be put into action.

Sanctions For Individuals Who Do Not Comply With Mandatory Reporting

Students reported for failing to comply with the mandatory COVID-19 reporting and/or quarantine/isolation requirements will be referred to the Dean of Students and disciplinary action will be taken in accordance with the Student Code of Conduct.

Faculty and staff who do not comply with mandatory COVID-19 reporting, testing and/or quarantine/isolation requirements will receive a written reprimand, at a minimum, that will impact their eligibility for merit increases and also will be subject to other, more severe, disciplinary action as appropriate.

Vaccine Incentive Program and Availability

In an effort to increase vaccine participation on campus, TAMUT will be launching a vaccine incentive program for students, and a separate vaccine incentive program for university faculty and staff. Vaccination remains the most effective way to mitigate the impact of COVID-19. Anyone age 12 and older is eligible for the vaccine. Vaccines are currently available at a number of locations around Texarkana, and the university has scheduled two upcoming vaccine clinics on campus. The on-site vaccine clinics will be on August 19th and August 24th. Additional vaccination dates will be scheduled in September for those requiring a second dose. To locate a vaccine provider near you visit the CDC's vaccine finder website.

To be eligible for a vaccine incentive drawing, you must provide valid proof of vaccination (either one or two shots depending on the vaccine) in the TAMUT Voluntary Vaccination Reporting Portal (which is different from the mandatory COVID-19 Reporting Form portal). Students, faculty, and staff must be fully vaccinated and must submit their proof of vaccination on the university’s Voluntary Vaccination Reporting Portal by September 28, 2021 before the drawing takes place at noon on October 1st, 2021.

Eligible TAMUT students who show proof of vaccination through the TAMUT Voluntary Vaccine Reporting Portal will be entered into a random drawing for a chance to win one of four $2000 scholarships*.

TAMUT faculty who show proof of vaccination through the TAMUT Voluntary Vaccine Reporting Portal will be entered into drawings to win one of two $250 Visa gift cards*.

TAMUT staff who show proof of vaccination through the TAMUT Voluntary Vaccine Reporting Portal will be entered into drawings for one of six $250 Visa gift cards, or have the option of receiving two extra paid days off*.

*Please review the terms and conditions for the vaccine incentive program.

Case Investigation, Quarantine and Contact Tracing

In addition to self-reporting requirements, cooperation with the TAMUT’s COVID-19 contact tracing and quarantine/isolation protocols is expected of all students, faculty, and staff.

The self-report portal will collect vital information to assess your personal situation and guidance for best managing your healthcare experience. All information shared will be treated with utmost confidentiality and in accordance with any applicable privacy laws.

Following self-report, a representative of the university will make contact with the individual to determine if an additional interview is required and provide additional guidance to each positive case related to isolation and quarantine. Quarantine/isolation guidance will be updated regularly in concert with local, state and federal public health guidance.

Quarantine/isolation for a close contact, identified by a positive case during the case investigation or as self-reported on the COVID-19 Reporting Form, is dependent on vaccination status, symptoms experienced, and the ability to safely isolate/quarantine. Cases may not have to quarantine if they are fully vaccinated (two weeks since final required dose of their selected vaccine).

Classes

Please note that the extensive remote learning opportunities that were available last year will not be available as the semester starts.

If you must isolate or quarantine, students will need to contact their professors and make appropriate arrangements to complete assignments and stay current in classes. Such arrangements are expected to be like those offered in the past for students who missed class due to illness or other urgent matters. Faculty members will be responsible for determining appropriate arrangements.

Summary

Please help keep the Eagle family safe by getting vaccinated, wearing a mask indoors, washing hands frequently, and distancing yourself from others whenever possible. Together we can protect the nest and make this semester safe and enjoyable for everyone.

THE TAMUT FALL 2021 COVID-19 MANAGEMENT AND GUIDANCE PLAN IS SUBJECT TO CHANGE AS A RESULT OF LOCAL, STATE, AND FEDERAL REGULATIONS AS WELL AS GUIDANCE FROM THE TEXAS A&M UNIVERSITY SYSTEM.

 

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