Return to Campus Weekly Update for Students – September 4, 2020

This weekly update is intended to keep you informed of the latest developments from our Return to Campus Team. Please visit www.otterbein.edu/rtc for additional general and student-related information.

Labor Day Weekend

Labor Day weekend is here, and the forecast looks great! Please enjoy this weekend safely and responsibly, and if you live on campus, we encourage you to stay here and stay safe.

Athletics Activities Resuming

In accordance with NCAA and OAC guidelines, Athletics teams will be resuming basic activities within Otterbein facilities. Student-athletes will be working in groups of 10 and will be masked when entering and exiting, as well as during some elements of the activity.

Reminders of Protocols:

  • Facial Coverings: Please remember that students, faculty, staff and visitors are required to wear facial coverings in common spaces at all times, including classrooms and the library, if it is safe to do so. To be effective, a facial covering must cover your nose AND mouth.
  • Positive Test Results: Students must contact the COVID Support Line if they have tested positive, have been exposed to someone with COVID, or have COVID symptoms: 614-823-1586 or covid@otterbein.edu.
  • Reporting a Concern: When reporting a concern, include all information necessary to investigate the concern. That may include date, time and location. Report concerns to the COVID-19 Support Line at 614-823-1586 or covid@otterbein.edu or the Otterbein Police at (614) 823-1222 (for concerns that need immediate attention).
  • Cleaning Spaces: Cleaning supplies including disinfectant wipes and sprays are available in all classrooms and common spaces. Remember to clean surface areas in a space before you use it to prevent the spread of COVID-19.
  • Classroom Seating: Do not move furniture in the classrooms. The seats are spaced 6 feet apart to prevent exposure to COVID-19. Additionally, you should sit in the same seat each time your class meets in person to limit the number of people with whom you have contact.

Definition of Exposure

The CDC defines exposure to COVID-19 as being 6 feet or closer for 15 minutes or more to an individual who has tested positive for COVID-19. Our classrooms have been intentionally set up with at least 6 feet between desks to prevent exposure. You are not permitted to rearrange furniture in the classrooms.

Enhanced Cleaning

In addition to regular cleaning and disinfecting, the University has engaged WFF to develop an Enhanced Cleaning program. Enhanced Cleaning is the process where spaces receive additional cleaning and sanitizing to reduce the spread of infectious disease.

An important part of Enhanced Cleaning involves high touch points. The CDC has updated protocol and guidance for institutional and higher education to have increased touch point cleaning. Touch point cleaning consists of using approved disinfecting in all campus facilities once a day, such as light switches, door handles, elevator buttons, ATM machines, vending machines, common-area furniture, conference room tables, classroom tables and desk, and restroom fixtures. residence halls and high traffic buildings will be done twice each day.

Some important elements of the enhanced cleaning program at Otterbein University are as follows:

  • Between now and the end of the year Housekeeping will provide the equivalent of nine (9) full time employees to disinfect high touch spaces. These employees will be overseen by a GBAC Trained Technician.
  • Housekeeping will utilize a number of CDC approved methods for sanitizing, including chemical wipes, sprays, and fogs. Safety Data Sheets are available for all products and will be furnished upon request.
  • Cleaners working to disinfect spaces will be easily identifiable, wear proper personal protective equipment, including facial coverings, and maintain social distance while performing work.
  • While still in development, routes, which include the schedule and scope of work, for Enhanced Cleaning for all campus spaces will be made available for review upon request.

Directional Signage

As some of you may have noticed, Otterbein’s original plan to place directional signage on floors was not implemented widely across campus. Franklin County Public Health advised the Return to Campus Team that because we are requiring facial coverings and arranging our classrooms for social distancing, the traffic flow in our doorways, hallways and stairwells could proceed safely without one-direction traffic flow. As always, we ask you to stay 6 feet away from other individuals when standing in common areas.