Contingency planning has begun at Cal Poly as coronavirus cases continue to rise across the country.

In a campus-wide email sent Sunday night, President Jeffery Armstrong and Interim Provost Mary Pedersen said sick students, faculty and staff members should stay home to minimize transmission of their illness.

“In the current situation, faculty should be as clear and compassionate as possible in responding to student absences,” the email read.

The email noted the Campus Health and Wellbeing Center is experiencing a high volume of visits and asked instructors to consider not requiring students to provide a doctor’s note for an absence.

Faculty and staff members with high-risk medical concerns are also being asked to speak with their supervisors about alternative work arrangements.

The email said employees without medical concerns should continue normal business.

While campus operations have not been changed, university administration is planning for potential changes in instruction if coronavirus spreads near San Luis Obispo.

“Faculty are encouraged to begin considering the use of virtual means of communication with students such as Zoom, LMS chat, or email, if necessary,” the email read.

Instructors are being asked to consider alternative methods to deliver final exams if in-person testing is not possible.

According to the San Luis Obispo County Public Health Department, there are no confirmed cases of coronavirus at this time. To monitor the situation, the Cal Poly Emergency Operations Center has been activated.

Last week, a county resident showing signs of novel coronavirus COVID-19 was tested for coronavirus and came back negative, according to the San Luis Obispo County Public Health Department.

Cal Poly has suspended study abroad programs in South Korea and Italy due to the virus. In addition, travelers to China, South Korea, Japan, Italy and Iran are being asked to delay their return to campus for 14 days after returning.

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