Mar 16, 2020

FHSU classes canceled this week; students asked to move out of dorms

Posted Mar 16, 2020 8:47 PM

By James Bell
Hays Post

Fort Hays State University announced Monday following the end of the day, on-campus classes will be canceled, moving up the timeline that was presented last week that would have shifted courses online following the university's spring break next week.

Students that reside on campus have also been notified they should prepare to move out of the dorms by 5 p.m. Tuesday.

"We remain committed to the underlying goal of all our efforts and decision-making since the start of the COVID-19 outbreak: safeguarding the health of our students, faculty, and staff," FHSU president Tisa Mason said in an announcement to the university. "In striving to do so, we have also remained committed to our guiding principle that policies and decisions in response to COVID-19 should be informed by and aligned with, local, state, and national medical authorities and public health experts."

On-campus courses are still planned to transition to online-only beginning March 30, and they currently are anticipating they will remain online through the end of the semester.

"University housing, computing services, food service, health clinics, and counseling services, and all other aspects of the University will remain open at this time, subject to further decisions, social distancing measures, and any CDC, KDHE, or local health official guidance regarding self-isolation or self-quarantine requirements," the announcement said.

As students depart, they are asked to practice social distancing on or off of campus.

As the university is working through students leaving the university early, refunds will be issued for payments already made to cover housing.

"Residential Life and Student Fiscal Services will automatically process refunds for room and board for students checking out of on-campus housing," the announcement said. "All refunds will be based on the student’s official check-out date."

The university will remain open during this time, but services will be limited for those that are allowed to stay under special circumstances.

University staff will continue in their regular positions.

"The university is currently continuing normal daily operations and all employees should continue to report to work at their usual work location and scheduled time," the announcement said.

All FHSU events have been canceled, including testing services.

A decision about commencement is planned by March 27.

"As the University’s policy, planning, and actions move forward, we should continue to be grounded in our fundamental goal of safeguarding the health of our faculty, staff, and students, and we should continue to be guided by the recommendations provided by our public health officials," Mason said. 

"I appreciate your patience and grace as we navigate the challenges before us. We are all called to respond to a once-unimaginable situation at a time when the world is changing and responding by the minute," she said. "I find comfort knowing that time and time again Fort Hays State and our people have demonstrated our innovation, resilience, and compassion to overcome obstacles and thrive. Throughout our Tiger community faculty, staff, students, alumni and stakeholders are stepping up to the challenge and finding solutions to the challenges we now face."