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PVCC students return to classrooms on Monday

Piedmont Virginia Community College students will return to campus for in-person learning on Monday after spending the past two weeks learning online, school officials announced on Thursday.

As of Monday, all classes originally scheduled to be in person will resume according to published schedules. Classes originally scheduled to be online will continue.

The current college policy requiring everyone in facilities to wear face coverings while indoors will remain in effect.

“We look forward to welcoming our students back to campus,” said PVCC President Frank Friedman. “It is imperative that everyone adhere to the mask policy. Without a mask requirement, we could not return to in-person learning due to the highly contagious nature of the omicron variant.”

Friedman said faculty and staff have been asked to enforce the mask policy “with no exceptions.”

With COVID-19 cases surging earlier this month, PVCC decided on Jan. 6 to switch to virtual classes for the first two weeks of the spring semester, which began Jan. 10. At the time Friedman said the move was “in everyone’s best interest” and encouraged students and staff to get vaccines, which the school is not requiring.

Out of 4,500 students and 500 faculty and staff, fewer than 100 cases of COVID have been reported during the two-week, all online period. That is a reported positivity rate of only 2%.

UVa, which started spring term on Wednesday, has a positivity rate of 20% for both student and staff. The school moved up its booster requirement from Feb. 1 to Jan. 14 ahead of the spring semester’s start, but its vaccination requirements were scrapped Wednesday in light of an executive order signed by Gov. Glenn Youngkin.

Blue Ridge Health District has reported 1,181 new cases of COVID since Monday.


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