March 10, 2020
Dear Campus Community,
As we prepare to enter spring break, we write to share some important information regarding travel and keeping our campus healthy once classes resume.
Travel over spring break:
Please use prudence in making final considerations regarding travel, both internationally and domestically. The rate of spread for the COVID-19 outbreak is uncertain, and the CDC will review and update its list of high-risk countries on a regular basis.
- We strongly encourage students, faculty and staff to consider postponing international travel at this time. Every person traveling for any reason from a Level 2 or Level 3 country for COVID-19 or who is aware that they have been in direct contact with a known COVID-19 positive individual MUST self-quarantine off campus for 14 days upon return to the US. Today, the Level 2 and 3 list includes China, Iran, Italy, Japan, and South Korea, but new countries could be added at any time, including while you are traveling.
- The Knox College Choir Tour to France has been cancelled. We made this decision with considerable regret. The choir has been engaged in months of preparation, and we acknowledge the disappointment that will come with this decision. We are taking this step out of an abundance of caution for student safety and a desire to minimize potential disruption to the students' educational program.
- We strongly encourage all students, faculty and staff to register their personal spring break travel to international locations here. Travel regulations and health guidelines are changing rapidly, and we want to be as responsive and supportive as possible should more changes occur. Those who register their personal travel will receive personalized updates if the country they are visiting moves to a CDC Level 2 or Level 3 travel health advisory.
- There are currently no travel restrictions within the United States. This may be subject to change.
As a reminder, students may remain in campus housing at no additional cost during spring break by registering here.
Considerations when classes resume:
Please assess your health carefully before returning to campus for Spring classes.
If you are feeling ill with fever, cough, and/or shortness of breath, please stay home and contact a healthcare provider immediately. Students with these symptoms who wish to be seen by Health Services are asked to first call Health Services (309) 341-7559 prior to visiting the clinic. Health Services staff will triage risk based on symptoms and possible exposure over the phone and discuss the next steps for treatment. Faculty and staff should contact their own healthcare provider.
The Dean of the College will work with students and faculty on a case-by-case basis if a student is advised to stay out of class.
As a reminder, we will continue to note everyday preventive actions to help prevent the spread of all respiratory viruses, including:
- Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds. If soap and water are not available, use an alcohol-based (60%) hand sanitizer.
- Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth with unwashed hands.
- Cover your cough or sneeze with a tissue, then throw the tissue in the trash.
- Stay home when you are sick.
- Avoid people who are sick.
- Clean frequently touched objects and surfaces. Custodial staff utilize a disinfectant whose properties include virucidal performance against Coronavirus as well as several Influenza strains, and additional cleaning of high traffic areas has been incorporated into the custodial schedule. It is still important that you clean your own spaces and wash your hands regularly.
- Masks are only recommended if you are sick or directly caring for a sick person.
Check your email for updates regularly. We appreciate your understanding as we respond to this rapidly evolving challenge. The most current information will be shared with the campus community through email.
Anne Ehrlich, Vice President for Student Development
Michael Schneider, Provost and Dean of the College