Cal State closure: CSU campuses closed to students, online instruction to continue through fall semester

SAN FRANCISCO (KGO) -- The California State University (CSU) system said it plans to cancel all in-person classes for the fall and to continue instruction online, due to the coronavirus pandemic.

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CSU Chancellor Timothy White made the announcement Tuesday, which will affect all 23 of its universities, including San Francisco State, San Jose State and Cal State East Bay and Sonoma State.

"This virtual planning approach for the next academic year is necessary because of the evolving data surrounding the progression of COVID-19." White explained to CSU trustees.

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White said non-partisan researchers and health experts forecast additional waves of infection coupled with the flu season in the fall. He added the public immunity rate is very low, and it is not likely a vaccine will be developed during the academic year.

The CSU campuses moved to virtual learning in March due to coronavirus pandemic. To mitigate the spread of the virus, the university closed a majority of its campus to students and canceled graduation.

On Tuesday, appearing before Congress, Dr. Anthony Fauci, Director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, was asked how university presidents would navigate reopening schools.

"Even at the top speed we're going, we don't see a vaccine playing in the ability of individuals to get back to school this term," stated Fauci.

Dr. Fauci did not recommend canceling in-person classes but instead said that testing will likely play more of a role in helping schools reopen safely -- A concept shared by President Trump's testing czar.

"We expect there to be 25-30 million point-of-care tests per month available. It's certainly possible to test all of the students," added Admiral Brett Giroir.

The UC system said it will make key decisions by mid-June. In the meantime, they've come up with three scenarios:

  • Scenario one: full remote instruction in the fall

  • Scenario two: In-Person classes resume with certain restrictions

  • Scenario three and the most unlikely: Campus operations largely will return to normal

Some other colleges are already anticipating starting in-person classes in the fall.

One of them is Purdue University. "We'll be testing people and tracing those who do prove to have caught this infection," announced Mitch Daniels, Purdue's president.

Dr. Fauci did acknowledge that the college situation will vary from one region to the next, depending on the outbreaks reported.

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