Fordham Forward FAQs for Faculty
Will the fall semester be held in person?
Fordham is preparing to offer the full range of in-person instruction and on-campus activities this fall.
Will I be required to be vaccinated?
All employees teaching and working in-person are required to be fully vaccinated by August 1, in anticipation of permanent U.S. Food and Drug Administration approval of one or more of the currently available vaccines. Fordham is requiring that all students be vaccinated by the opening of the fall semester. Employees may request exemptions on medical and religious grounds here.
Are there social distancing measures in classrooms?
On June 15, 2021, the State of New York lifted the vast majority of COVID-19 restrictions after reaching a statewide vaccination rate of 70 percent. All interior spaces will return to pre-COVID seat spacing and occupation capacity, including elevators, stairwells, hallways, and all other spaces.
Will my students and I be required to wear face coverings?
Unvaccinated students and employees with a Fordham-approved vaccine exemption must continue to wear masks indoors and maintain social distancing, if possible, consistent with their activities. Fully vaccinated students and employees are not required to wear masks in any location on campus, indoors or out.
Will I be teaching a mix of in person and remote students in the same class?
Some but not all degree programs may be able to accommodate a limited number of students who are unable to attend class in person. Before exploring potential accommodations for remote learning, the student wil need to seek approval from the University.
Eligibility criteria for remote learning are:
-The petitioner is at high-risk for severe medical complications if they were to contract COVID-19 on campus;
-The petitioner is unable to secure a student visa in time to begin classes in New York City.
Any student petitioning for remote learning will need to provide appropriate documentation to support their case. Students approved for remote learning will be few in number and will likely have a very limited set of course options available to them. A student who is not approved for remote learning will not be able to access their courses remotely and may choose to defer or take a leave of absence.
If approved, the student’s academic dean will explore what kinds of accommodations for remote learning are feasible such as:
- Approaching particular instructors about changing the modality of their course sections.
- Reassigning the handful of approved remote learners to the fewest possible number of course sections, so as to minimize the occurrence of sections where there is a mix of in-person and remote learners.
- Upgrading the educational technology in select classrooms so that those instructors who will be teaching a mix of in-person and remote learners can benefit from enhanced video and audio capabilities.
- Consolidating a group of remote learners into a single course section and designate it as a fully online course section.
What should I do upon learning of a student's financial, housing, or other needs?
A variety of funds are available for students who are experiencing emergency financial hardship. Please reach out to the dean's office of the student’s school about the need who will serve as the liaison with the Financial Aid office and/or with the committee managing Student Emergency Funding.
What should I do upon learning that a student has been diagnosed with COVID-19?
Anyone who has tested positive for COVID-19 will be required to self-isolate for an amount of time prescribed by the NYS Department of Health or their physician. In coordination with the NYC and NYS contact tracing programs, Fordham will implement its contact tracing program to assist personnel in the notification of members of the Fordham community who have been exposed to an individual who has tested positive while on campus. Close contacts to the infected individual will be directed to quarantine themselves so as to prevent further spread.
What do I tell my students?
You may tell your students that a student in the class has tested positive for COVID-19; that the student is isolated; and that University staff are following up to do contact tracing and inform others. The isolation is necessary to ensure the infection is contained as much as possible.
Should I tell students to get another COVID-19 test?
Yes, but they should contact University Health Services (UHS) by phone or email, rather than going directly to the testing tent (at Rose Hill) or testing rooms (at Lincoln Center). UHS will advise the student where they should get the test.
Should I be tested?
Yes, out of an abundance of caution, you should be tested, either through your private physician or through VitalCheck. We ask that you not go for testing to the testing tent (Rose Hill) or testing rooms (Lincoln Center).
Will I have to be quarantined?
Please follow the guidance of the contract tracer or Fordham's Office of Public Safety.
Does Fordham now have instant point of care tests?
Yes, although a follow-up polymerase chain reaction (PCR) test via VitalCheck or your personal healthcare provider is required to confirm negative results—the PCR test detects virus DNA and is more accurate than antigen tests in detecting a current infection.
Will contact tracers from both Fordham and New York City Contact Tracing reach out to students and myself?
Fordham contact tracers will certainly contact you and your students; New York City contact tracers may also follow up with you and you students.
Does Fordham report names of COVID-19 positive individuals to the New York state Department of Health dashboard?
No. The University only provides the state with numbers of tests and positive cases in various categories.
Does Fordham report names of COVID-19 positive individuals to the New York City Department of Health?
Yes, the University is required by law to provide the names of students, faculty, and staff who test positive for COVID-19. Fordham is also required to report the names of anyone who was within 6 feet of the infected person for more than 10 minutes (or in an enclosed classroom for more than 60 minutes), with or without face coverings, and to notify the city that these individuals are quarantining.
What if the COVID-19 positive student reveals their identity to me and other students in the class?
It is the student’s prerogative to speak about their COVID-19 positive status. The University is still obligated to ensure that the student’s medical information is protected, and so you may not share the identity of the student with colleagues or other students, or refer to the student’s medical status except to University or public health officials who need the information for contact tracing and quarantine protocols.
What if I have further questions?
If you can’t find the answer on the COVID-19 Guidelines pages, you may contact your department chair or associate chair, supervisor, or dean. You may also request a visit with a health provider through VitalCheck.