28.9 F
Wichita
Friday, December 4, 2020

How To Go Back To College In A Pandemic: Face Masks, Social Distancing And Shorter Semesters

Sports Headlines

Jayhawks Top Ichabods in Home Opener, 89-54

Courtesy of Kansas Athletics LAWRENCE, Kan. — The No. 7/5  Kansas Jayhawks won its 48-consecutive home opener, led by...

Royals Agree to Terms with Hunter Dozier and Jorge Soler; Non-tender Six Players

KANSAS CITY, MO (December 2, 2020) – The Kansas City Royals announced tonight that they will not tender a Major League contract...

COVID-19 Causing High School Basketball Schedule Changes

Even as the first high school basketball games are set to tip off later this week, changes are already announced as the Marysville home...

Jayhawks Battle Back, Take Down No. 20 Kentucky, 65-62 in Champions Classic

Courtesy of Kansas Athletics INDIANAPOLIS – Despite falling behind by double-digits in the first half, No. 7 Kansas was...

Royals sign LHP Mike Minor to a two-year deal, with a club option for 2023

KANSAS CITY, MO (December 1, 2020) – The Kansas City Royals announced today that they have signed left-handed pitcher Mike Minor to a two-year Major...
Derek Nester
Derek Nester was born and raised in Blue Rapids, and graduated from Valley Heights High School in May of 2000. He attended Cowley College in Arkansas City and Johnson County Community College in Overland Park studying Journalism & Media Communications.After stops at KFRM and KCLY radio in Clay Center, he joined KNDY in 2002 as a board operator and play by play announcer. Derek is now responsible for the digital content of Dierking Communications, Inc. six radio stations.In 2005 Derek joined the staff of KCFX radio in Kansas City as a production coordinator for the Kansas City Chiefs Radio Network, which airs on over 94 radio stations across 12 Midwest states and growing. In 2018 he became the Studio Coordinator at the Cumulus Kansas City broadcast center for Kansas City Chiefs Football.

By Stephan Bisaha – Kansas News Service

WICHITA, Kansas — Gone are the days of sneaking late into a crowded lecture hall. Reading college students’ disapproving faces won’t be easy. And Thanksgiving is the new Christmas.

There’ll be a lot of adjustments this fall for students and professors at Kansas’ universities, institutions that have been finalizing plans for how they’ll keep everyone safe from the coronavirus when in-person instruction returns.

Some details are still being worked out, but most four-year universities have agreed on a few main policies, all of which rely on the newly classic COVID-19 prevention toolkit — face masks, social distancing and cutting back on traveling.

CREDIT STEPHAN BISAHA / FREEPIK.COM

In the classrooms, in hallways, at student unions and on the paths between buildings — face masks will be required just about everywhere on campus.

Five state universities instituted policies that masks must be worn with a few exceptions. Faculty members can ditch it if they’re alone in their office. The same goes for students in their private dorm rooms or when walking outside with no one nearby.

They’ll also be able to lose the masks while eating a salad in the dining hall (just don’t expect to make it yourself at KU — they’re doing away with all self-serving stations).

At Kansas State, students and staff must go through virtual face mask training.

And while Fort Hays State don’t have a requirement for face masks, the college highly encourages them.

CREDIT STEPHAN BISAHA / FREEPIK.COM

No matter what enrollment looks like when the semester starts, classes will still have plenty of empty seats.

Nearly all of the state universities will seat students at least six feet apart during classes. In large lecture halls where the desks are bolted down, entire rows will be left empty.

Fewer seats mean many professors will have to split their class time. For example, instead of 30 students coming in a couple times a week, half might come in on a Monday while the others tackle the online work before switching places later in the week.

Hands-on classes like lab work will be given some social distancing flexibility due to cramped equipment spaces. But universities have asked teachers to be ready to shift to online instruction in case a second wave sends students home even earlier than planned.

CREDIT STEPHAN BISAHA

Regardless of what rules universities enforce on campus, they have little control over what students do when they leave for Thanksgiving break, potentially returning to COVID-19 hotspots.

That’s why most Kansas universities are telling students not to come back after the holiday.

In-person classes will resume online the week after Thanksgiving. Some schools will provide a few more lessons online, while others will reserve the last week of November for studying ahead of finals the next week.

The traditional fall break was wrapped into Thanksgiving break in hopes that it’ll keep people from traveling during the semester. Emporia State students who live on campus will see a cheaper housing bill to reflect that shorter stay.

Only KU has laid out its plans for the spring semester — classes resume Feb. 1 and no spring break — while everyone else waits to see what the pandemic has in store.

Stephan Bisaha reports on education and young adult life for KMUW and the Kansas News Service. You can follow him on Twitter @stevebisaha.

The Kansas News Service is a collaboration of KCUR, Kansas Public Radio, KMUW and High Plains Public Radio focused on health, the social determinants of health and their connection to public policy. Kansas News Service stories and photos may be republished by news media at no cost with proper attribution and a link to ksnewsservice.org.

Kansas Headlines

CDC Announces Shortened COVID-19 Quarantine Periods

Counties may opt in to similar guidance in Kansas TOPEKA – In conjunction with the Centers for Disease Control...

KDHE Makes No Changes To Kansas Travel Quarantine List Criteria

TOPEKA – There are no changes this week to the Kansas Department of Health and Environment’s (KDHE) travel quarantine list. Those needing to quarantine...

Safety Is The Secret Ingredient To Holiday Traditions

TOPEKA – With the arrival of the holidays there are many memories to be made and traditions to follow, and having children participate in...

Kansas Organizations Launch Effort to Stop the Spread of COVID-19 in Kansas

(Nov. 23, 2020) - Stop the Spread Kansas is a public awareness campaign urging Kansans to do their part in slowing the rate of...

Governor Kelly Makes $38.5 Million of CARES ACT Funding Available to Kansas Small Businesses, Slow COVID-19 Spread

TOPEKA – Today, Governor Laura Kelly announced that the State Finance Council unanimously approved the Kansas Office of Recovery recommendations to allocate $20 million...

Kansas News Service

Kansas Hospitals Seek Help From Nearby States, But The Whole Midwest Faces A COVID Surge

By Celia Llopis-Jepsen - Kansas News Service Hospitals in Colorado and Nebraska are calling Kansas in desperate search of beds for coronavirus patients. But Kansas...

Kansas Republicans Keep Their 3 Congressional Seats; Davids Reelected In Kansas City Suburbs

By Stephan Bisaha Stephen Koranda, Nadya Faulx, Aviva Okeson-Haberman - Kansas News Service Democrats and Republicans in Kansas will keep their seats in the U.S....

Republicans Keep Kansas’ Open Senate Seat By Electing Roger Marshall

By Jim McLean - Kansas News Service OVERLAND PARK, Kansas — Kansas Republican U.S. Rep. Roger Marshall is moving up to the U.S. Senate after...

‘It Is Not Sustainable’: Kansas’ Online Teachers Are Overworked And Quitting

WICHITA, Kansas — Less than a week into the new school year, the warning came: the school district’s COVID-19 learning plan expected too much from...

Kansas Nursing Homes Still Waiting On Coronavirus Testing Gear From The Feds, And Can’t Afford Labs

By Celia Llopis-Jepsen - Kansas News Service Phillips County Retirement Center got a coronavirus testing machine this month from the U.S. Department of Health and...