Tuesday, Jan. 18, 2022 - 9:30 a.m.
There has been a surge in positive COVID-19 cases on campus over the last two weeks, as expected. With the high transmissibility of the omicron variant and the return of more students and staff to campus, we anticipate that the number will continue to increase through January.
You’re reminded to continue to follow requirements for being on campus, including wearing face coverings while indoors and staying home when sick. Please also review the information on what to do if you test positive.
Given the surge in cases, and the related overwhelming increase in contact tracing and case investigations, University Health Services data-gathering efforts will be stretched. We do not anticipate sending additional WarnMe notifications until the current spike in omicron variant cases has decelerated. Meanwhile, the campus dashboard will continue to provide information about testing conducted by UHS. (It does not include at-home self-testing and off-campus testing, even if reported to UHS, for example).
Friday, Jan. 14, 2022 - noon
The following update from Chancellor Carol Christ was shared in Friday's Response & Recovery newsletter:
Following up on our campus message last week, I want to clarify what to expect when we resume in-person instruction on Monday, Jan. 31.
While the omicron wave is expected to peak in January, it is not expected to substantially subside prior to Jan. 31. This means that we expect high numbers of students, staff and faculty who are not able to come to campus for COVID-19 related reasons. The two-week period of remote instruction will be used to plan for how best to operate the campus with reduced staffing.
Due to anticipated staffing shortages, you should expect reduced service levels and longer wait times when accessing campus services. Please be patient and understanding during this challenging time.
Instructors, we ask that you extend grace to students who may be facing challenges at home and be as accommodating as possible. Students, we in turn ask that you recognize the burden this places on instructors and staff and extend grace as well. For everyone, please practice empathy and compassion as we navigate the next several weeks together.
The omicron wave may look very different than past surges we’ve experienced but our principles are the same. We’ll continue to take sensible precautions and follow the advice of our campus public health experts while preserving our core function as an in-person university and furthering our mission.
Friday, Jan. 7, 2022 - 4 p.m.
After consultation with the UC Berkeley public health committee, input from students, staff and faculty, and much deliberation, UC Berkeley has decided to begin the semester with a two-stage process, with most courses being offered fully remote for the first two weeks (Jan. 18-28) and then moving to fully in-person instruction in the third week of the semester on Jan. 31.Read the campus message and visit the instruction page for more information.