Campus COVID-19 Reporting

From: VP Rick AmRhein
To: Students, Faculty, and Staff
Posted: September 3, 2020 at 5:16 p.m.

Students, Faculty, and Staff,

During the past two weeks of reporting about active COVID-19 cases on our campus, I have received numerous messages providing feedback about what we are reporting and how often, as well as some questions about how the senior administration uses this information along with other data points to make decisions about the immediate future of face-to-face instruction on campus.

From the beginning, it was determined that the most important data point to report is the number of positive cases on our campus and to report that number regularly. We are reporting on Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays, typically by noon. Based on suggestions, we are now reporting these data longitudinally as well. Starting tomorrow, we will also begin reporting how many of the active COVID-19 cases are new cases.

I have consistently indicated that we are following Centers for Disease Control and Indiana State Health Department guidelines to determine how we should operate, but there are many other quantitative and qualitative measures we are following on a daily basis to determine whether we can safely continue to offer face-to-face instruction and remain on campus. Among them are the following:

State Positivity Rate

Region Positivity Rate (Lake, Porter, LaPorte Counties)

Porter County Positivity Rate

District 1 (5 County Region) ICU beds available

District 1 (5 County Region) ventilators available

Quarantine beds available on campus

PPE supply on campus

Ability to manage contact tracing

Student compliance with preventative measures

Faculty/staff compliance with preventative measures

Faculty/staff ability to support student learning and success

Student’s ability to make adequate progress toward learning objectives

Practices of other higher education institutions in the region

Pressure from outside groups

Public opinion

Local, State, or Federal mandates

These measures will be evaluated as a whole in making any decisions about changing campus operations during the pandemic.

Everyone on campus is working hard to comply with our safety precautions in and out of the classroom and it seems to be working. We all need to be vigilant in maintaining good practices to keep our campus community safe as we act in the best interests of our students, faculty, and staff.