Universities roll back reopening plans amid new COVID-19 outbreaks

As Harvard announces all remote classes for fall, other schools also share their plans for the rest of the year.
2:39 | 07/07/20

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Transcript for Universities roll back reopening plans amid new COVID-19 outbreaks
and sweet riva. The cover story. A look at the major changes coming to colleges and universities this fall. Harvard now announcing all classes will be remote as other schools reveal their plans. Erielle reshef joins us from Columbia university there in new York with more. Good morning. Reporter: Good morning. This pandemic is forcing universities like Harvard and Columbia to completely reimagine their upcoming academic year. Some opting to move their courses completely online. Others for staggered schedules all in an effort to keep the campus community safe. This morning, with a new school year around the corner, new plans for college in the age of covid-19. Harvard announcing Monday just 40% of the student body will live on campus including all freshmen but all students will still take classes remotely. Today was pretty heartbreaking to see that we're not going to get that. We won't get the full experience. Reporter: The university also says it will conduct viral testing every three days, set physical distancing requirements and require face coverings in public areas. Major modifications at other prominent schools too. Princeton bringing back only half of its undergraduates this fall and Columbia extending classes through the summer to avoid density. Sweeping changes to keep campus communities safe and mitigate outbreaks like the recent one at the university of Washington where 146 fraternity members tested positive. Overall 213 community members including students, staff and faculty also contracting the virus. Most asymptomatic, others with mild cases. There was probably quite a bit of asymptomatic transmission of this before we were able to pick up on the fact that there was community spread occurring and put steps in place to mitigate that. Reporter: At Georgia tech more than 800 faculty members publishing an open letter online urging the university system to make remote learning the default for 2020 to reduce disease transmission risk. This really is a list of concerns we have about the current plan and so what we would hope is that our president at Georgia tech can be empowered to be able to act independently to help safeguard the health and safety of our community. Reporter: In response to that letter, Georgia tech now says it will require all people on campus to wear a face mask and the president says the main objective moving forward to is move forward safely but, Lara, this highlights the delicate balance in higher education this upcoming year. Lara. Yeah, absolutely, erielle. Thank you so much. That story is constantly changing as well.

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