Several state colleges will be starting their Spring Semester on remote learning.
The decision has largely been fueled by the rapidly-spreading omicron variant of the coronavirus making its way through the United States.
The University of Illinois-Champaign-Urbana will start the spring semester remotely for at least the first week, beginning in-person learning on Jan. 24, with the University of Illinois Chicago moving to remote learning for at least the first two weeks. University of Illinois-Springfield though still plans to return to in-person classes on Jan. 18. UIS students, whether vaccinated or unvaccinated, will be required to undergo COVID-19 testing once they return to campus according to interim chancellor Karen Whitney. Whitney says testing requirements for fully vaccinated UIS personnel will end Feb. 10 unless otherwise announced. Unvaccinated or partially vaccinated individuals must continue to test twice a week.
For Illinois State University, in-person teaching and learning is currently set to begin on Jan. 24, although ISU offices and facilities will reopen as scheduled today for remote learning.
Northwestern is offering remote learning through Jan. 17 and Southern Illinois University-Carbondale said on its website that in-person classes will proceed on Jan. 10th. All on-campus employees and students, including those who are fully vaccinated, must be tested for COVID-19 upon return to campus.
All Southern Illinois University Edwardsville community members regardless of vaccination status are similarly expected to complete a COVID-19 test upon return to campus with classes starting today for the School of Pharmacy and the School of Dental Medicine, followed by Jan. 10th for all other remaining students.
University of Chicago and Loyola University have said all eligible students and staff are to be boosted before the spring semester. Loyola said though that Spring classes will be online and remain that way until at least January 31st.
Illinois College in Jacksonville has not yet made an announcement on any postponements or changes in schedule for the return to campus on January 17th. Regular hours for Lincoln Land Community College began today. LLCC’s Spring Semester begins on Jan. 8 with weekly classes starting Jan. 10.