Fresno State considering a return to virtual learning after Thanksgiving break

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FRESNO, Calif. (KGPE) – It’s been roughly one month since Fresno State students have returned to campus after a year of virtual learning. However, with only 13 ICU beds available in hospitals across the county, administrators are considering a return to online classes after Thanksgiving break.

“It’ll be good to not all return after Thanksgiving after we have been with family and friends and spending the weekend with other people,” said University President Saúl Jiménez-Sandoval.

According to the university, 85.5% of Fresno State students are vaccinated, and those exempt from the vaccine mandate are tested for COVID-19 weekly. When a student does test positive, the university has decided to only notify those who come into close contact with them.

“Say there’s a class of 20 students and, within that class, one of those students had COVID. They will not contact all 20 students. They will contact the students who were impacted by that one individual, who were near that one individual,” Jiménez-Sandoval said.

Since the start of the pandemic, the university has reported 248 positive cases. In a statement, the university said: “The University is considering a number of options, if necessary, including the transition of all in-person classes to virtual after the Thanksgiving holiday. A final decision has not been made. Any such decision will take into consideration guidance from local public health officials and from the CSU Office of the Chancellor.”

Jiménez-Sandoval says he does not see the university ever returning to a full-shutdown.

“If we have a breakout in a building, for example, we could see shutting that building down. But, in the meantime, the experience of being together on campus is truly valuable,” he said.

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