Students and Employees

This page provides a wide range of updates for new and returning students, faculty and staff on KU’s response to COVID-19, and how it relates to their campus experience. Check back frequently for the most recent information.

Covid-19 Information

The 2021-2022 academic year calendar follows a typical pre-pandemic schedule.

Cleaning protocols

If you are a staff or faculty unit leader and you’d like to coordinate a cleaning and disinfection plan for your workspace or building, contact Custodial Services. You can locate your building’s custodial leadership member on the Custodial Services website.

Heating, ventilation, and air conditioning (HVAC)

When it comes to HVAC maintenance and safety standards, we will continue to consult with and follow the best practices of the American Society of Heating, Refrigeration, and Air Conditioning Engineers; the Environmental Protection Agency; the Occupational Safety and Health Administration, and the CDC. Each campus building’s HVAC system runs at 40-60% humidity and at temperatures between 69-74 degrees Fahrenheit — ranges recommended to minimize the spread of COVID-19. KU HVAC teams will continue to assess and optimize air systems to maximize outside air intake and reduce recirculated air.

Adapting common facilities

  • Most buildings have at least one entrance with a touch-free door opener.
  • Hand sanitizing stations available in hallways, typically located near elevators.
  • Most restrooms have touch-free flushing and faucets.
  • Drinking fountains remain unavailable, but most buildings have at least one water bottle filling station.
  • One-way restriction on stairs removed.
  • Common areas open, but social distancing still encouraged where possible.
  • Break rooms open and restrictions of food storage lifted.
  • Conference and meeting rooms open.

Classrooms

  • Alcohol wipes still available for cleaning desktops.
  • Rolling plexiglass barriers available for instructors who want them.
  • Classroom seating designed for an optimal teaching and learning environment based on the Higher Learning Commission recommendations.
  • Regular seating capacity in lecture halls.

Study Spaces

Outdoor tents with electricity and WiFi are available for study breaks.

Special course adaptations

Course adaptation requests will be approved on a case-by-case basis. The details of each adaptation will be worked out between the student, their instructor, and their academic department. For more information about course adaptations, please visit the Student Affairs website or contact course-adapt@ku.edu.

Researchers are no longer required to create and maintain individual lab and fieldwork COVID-19 safety plans that are approved by deans, department chairs or center directors and kept on file with the Office of Research. Research facility managers are no longer required to track vendors or other visitors to buildings.

GTA offices are open to use as needed in the Fall. There are no longer COVID-19 related distancing requirements.

Refer to the Protect KU Research page or visit Graduate Studies for more information.

Campus health protocols

We are taking a comprehensive and coordinated approach to provide for our community’s health and wellness this school year. These efforts include:

  • Enhanced cleaning methods and schedules across all campus classrooms, dining, transportation, and facilities.
  • Posting hand sanitizer and disinfecting wipes in all classrooms and around campus.
  • Providing personal protective equipment and sanitizing supplies to students and employees.

We ask that all Jayhawks follow appropriate safety guidelines to help protect our campus community.


Testing

If you are experiencing COVID-19 symptoms, stay home and contact your health care provider. Many providers, including Watkins Health Services, are able to test for COVID-19 through commercial testing labs and will be able to provide results in three to five days. In some instances, testing can be expedited for quicker results.

If you are experiencing COVID-19 symptoms and do not have a primary care provider, call the Lawrence-Douglas County Public Health Coronavirus hotline at 785-856-4343. Nurses are available to provide initial screenings and provide directions on getting tested. Additional information can be found on Douglas County’s COVID-19 website.


If you’ve been exposed or display symptoms

Persons who do not meet all 3 of the criteria below should continue to follow current quarantine guidance after exposure to someone with suspected or confirmed COVID-19.

According to the Kansas Department of Health and Environment, vaccinated persons with an exposure to someone with suspected or confirmed COVID-19 are not required to quarantine if they meet all of the following criteria:∙

  1. Are fully vaccinated (i.e., ≥2 weeks following receipt of the second dose in a 2-dose series, or ≥2 weeks following receipt of one dose of a single-dose vaccine).
  2. Are within six months following receipt of the last dose in the series.
  3. Have remained asymptomatic since the current COVID-19 exposure.

Contact tracing and voluntary reporting

In accordance with Kansas law, KU will not conduct or authorize contact tracing or mandate contact tracing for any person. Participation in contact tracing is voluntary and will be conducted solely through the Douglas County Health Department.


Personal resources

For students

Your psychological and emotional well-being are just as important as your physical health. All students are encouraged to reach out to the university for personal help if it’s needed. If you encounter other students who may be struggling to adjust, reach out to them. Jayhawks have resources they can turn to:

For staff and faculty

KU employees are encouraged to reach out for personal help if it’s needed. Benefits-eligible employees and their dependents can receive assistance through the state’s Employee Assistance Program, which offers short-term counseling services, legal advice, money management assistance, and more. Employees may also be eligible for the Rosalie Lanier Gray KU Staff Assistance Fund, which assists those who are experiencing financial hardship due to natural or personal disaster.

 


Employee health coverage

Visit the Kansas State Employee Health Plan website for information on health benefits related to COVID-19.

International students are encouraged to partner with International Support Services (ISS) as they explore options or if they have questions or concerns. The staff’s expert knowledge can help protect immigration status and help students navigate issues related to on-campus and off-campus housing, completing the semester, how to depart campus in light of travel restrictions, and considerations for accessing online courses and maintaining contact with professors from abroad if they leave the United States.

Read the latest updates from ISS on COVID-19 and what it means for KU’s international student population.

Information specifically tailored to parents of international students is available at the ISS parents page.

On-campus residential facilities are open for the fall. Contact Student Housing at housing@ku.edu or 785-864-4560 if you have questions about residence facility guidance or requirements.

Parking

Several changes have been made in response to the COVID-19 pandemic, including shorter term permit options.

Permit information for:

Bus Service

  • Federal law requires all drivers and passengers to wear masks.

KU staff members who have been financially impacted by the pandemic may be eligible for the Rosalie Lanier Gray KU Staff Assistance Fund, which assists those who are experiencing financial hardship due to natural or personal disaster.