CU Boulder, among many other Universities, held in-person classes at the beginning of the school term. This quickly changed as the county of Boulder saw massive upticks in COVID-19 cases. The school was forced to move to remote learning only as they and the county assessed a better solution. Additionally, a controversial public health order was put in place banning all gatherings of those between ages 18-22 in the city of Boulder.
In recent weeks, the number of new COVID-19 in the county has dramatically decreased. On October 7th, the University announced at a press conference that it would bring back in-person classes starting October 14th. This would bring an end to more than two weeks of fully remote learning for some students.
When remote learning was announced, COVID-19 cases among CU students had reached 1,400. Since the orders were put in place the county has seen roughly 275 new cases among CU students; a dramatic downturn. Over the last weekend, not a single new cases involving students at the University were reported.
The city health order banning gathering of ages 18-22 ended October 8th. Two new health orders were announced that will begin as the past order expires. One of the orders focuses on college houses, including sororities and fraternities, by requiring houses to submit an infection control plan to the county in order to lift their stay-at-home orders. If the house fails to submit a report by October 12th, when the stay-at-home order is set to expire, it will remain under the stay-at-home orders until a plan is submitted and approved.
The other plan focuses on the gathering of 18-22-year-olds, based on new case data relative to that age range. It lays out a spectrum ranging from no gathering at all to gatherings similar to other age groups within the county. The loosening of restrictions will be based upon the county’s 14-day positivity rate and the 14-day average of cases per 100,000 people. On the other hand, tightening of restrictions will be based on the 5-day positivity rate and the 5-day average of cases per 100,000 people.
As a current CU student myself, I will personally continue my learning remote. The University has stated previously that students are not required to attend in-person classes if they feel unsafe. Hybrid learning is accessible to all in-person classes so that students can learn from the safety of their homes.