Feb. 16: Arrival Quarantine Over — Now What?

Dear Students,

Thank you for all of your hard work prior to arriving on campus to get COVID-19 tests, symptom screen, and self-quarantine. These difficult measures have already resulted in a successful arrival testing and arrival quarantine period. 

I know that arrival quarantine has felt particularly restrictive. We have now received all of the second PCR test results back for students who arrived this week, and I am pleased to share that effective immediately we have ended arrival quarantine. 

Note: If you are a student who arrived after the Bates COVID-19 Testing Center closed on Feb. 13, your arrival quarantine period does not end today. You should follow directives from Bates Health Services and the Bates COVID-19 Testing Center about discontinuing your arrival quarantine.

We must now continue to work together and approach the semester with a matched level of care and diligence. Please take a moment to review some important reminders below.

Reminders: Standard Public Health Policies & Protocols

All student public health policies from the fall semester remain in place. Although we know how challenging some of these policies are, they are a large part of what helped us have a successful fall semester on campus. Given the current national and local landscape, these policies must remain in effect for the winter semester in order to give us the best chance possible to have a positive end to our academic year.

  • Students are required to adhere to physical distancing standards whenever feasible. This means staying at least 6 feet apart from each other in all possible settings.
  • Students are required to wear face coverings or masks that cover the mouth and nose in all indoor and outdoor areas on campus, which includes all classrooms, study spaces, and lounges. Exceptions to the policy are (1) eating outdoors, when appropriate distance is maintained; (2) eating in designated indoor spaces, when appropriate distance is maintained; (3) students spending time in their own residence hall room; (4) and when working in private offices on campus.
  • All informal student gatherings are limited in size to 10 or fewer individuals. This includes on-campus residence halls, off-campus residences, and any other gathering places. Face coverings or masks must be worn at all times at any such gatherings as described above.
  • Students are not permitted to leave the state of Maine. Exceptions to this policy (e.g., medical needs or bereavement) can be requested by contacting Senior Associate Dean of Students Carl Steidel at csteidel@bates.edu.
  • Students are required to participate fully in population screen testing for COVID-19, contact tracing, and to self-monitor for symptoms for COVID-19.
  • Students will have access only to their own, assigned residence hall. Students will not have access to and may not enter residence halls other than their own.
  • Students are required to adhere to all dining policies regarding meal locations, timing of meals, face coverings, and physical distancing while eating.
  • Students are required to comply with any public health directives issued by college officials. These include directives related to quarantining, isolating, keeping current a campus evacuation plan, and following all policies listed in the Student Public Health Agreement.

Violations of Public Health Policies & Protocols

The college takes seriously its responsibility to our own community and to the wider world. As such, the college cannot tolerate violations of our arrival quarantine policies or any other aspect of the Student Public Health Agreement. A first violation will likely result in a referral to the student conduct process where the likely outcome will be an immediate removal from campus housing, removing access to campus facilities, and a requirement that the student return to their home residence to continue the semester via remote learning, if the courses for which they are enrolled can be completed remotely. Subsequent violations will likely result in a referral to the Student Conduct Committee where a minimum of a one semester suspension will be the likely outcome. 

Egregious or intentional violations of these policies will likely result in an immediate interim suspension followed by a referral to the Student Conduct Committee where a minimum of a one semester suspension will be the likely outcome. Egregious or intentional violations of these policies include, but are not limited to: hosting a gathering or party of more than 10 individuals at your on- or off-campus residence and not following directives regarding quarantining or isolating when required to do so. Hosts are defined as those students assigned to the room or suite if in on-campus housing and tenants for off-campus residences who were present for the party or gathering in question.

A Reminder about COVID-19 Testing

The thrice weekly testing schedule will begin Wednesday, Feb. 17. If you have not already done so, you must go into the Garnet Gateway and add testing appointment times for three times per week testing. You are able to make changes and add to your testing schedule until 4 a.m. the day of testing. If you have not secured a testing time, you should do so immediately.

The schedule for testing is:

  • Monday: PCR Test (7:30am–1p.m.)
  • Wednesday: PCR Test (7:30am–1pm)
  • Friday: Antigen Screening (7:30 a.m.–1pm)

Given how important testing is to our COVID-19 management strategy, please remember that you must comply with this testing program. This includes timely arrival for your scheduled testing times and getting tested on your scheduled days three times per week.

Dining Reminder

Starting on Wednesday, Feb. 17, students will be required to eat lunch at the time and location for which they have registered. Additionally, please remember you must present your Bates IDs when entering dining spaces.

Access to Spaces on Campus

We understand there is great interest in gathering with other students from your academic courses and for student clubs and organizations to have meeting space, particularly as we are in the colder months. 

There are a number of spaces for students to use for small group studying and programming, as well as private spaces for telehealth appointments. Please remember that all campus health protocols, including masking and distancing, apply in these indoor spaces, and please be aware of hours these spaces and others are available.

Where to Direct Questions

If you have any questions and are not quite sure to whom you should direct your question, please send your inquiry to studentaffairs@bates.edu, and we will be sure to connect you to the person best situated to assist you.

I look forward to seeing you out and about on campus tomorrow.

All my best,

Joshua McIntosh
Vice President for Campus Life