Returning To Campus for Spring 2021 Semester

We are looking forward to returning to campus for the Spring Semester. Please read this page as it outlines important information about health, safety, and academic policies and procedures. These policies have been developed after review of guidance from the CDC, Commission on Higher Education, WHO, and other agencies. In addition, Charleston School of Law is a participant in the Medical University of South Carolina’s “Back2Business” initiative.

We will continue to monitor the progression of the Coronavirus and as always, will keep the health and safety of our campus foremost in mind.  We recognize that we may need to adapt according to the circumstances. All of us will need to continue to be flexible and patient as the Spring semester progresses.

ACADEMIC PROGRAM

In the Spring we continue to offer many classes face-to-face as well as some online-only options for both 1Ls and upper-level students. Students who opt to take all online classes will receive the same level of support from Student Services, Career Services, the Library, and other departments of the Law School, albeit in virtual form.

1L Courses. All first year students, including those starting in January, will take a mix of in-person and online courses.

 Upper-Level Courses. For upper-level students, we continue to offer a number of required and elective courses online so that students can—if they wish—mix-and-match face-to-face and online courses.  If upper-level students wish to make any adjustments to their schedules, they will need to do so during the Add/Drop period, January 7 through January 15, by completing the form that can be found here and returning it to the Office of the Registrar.

ACADEMIC POLICIES

  1. Attendance — Students are required to attend class; students should know and understand the policies and procedures in the Law School’s Attendance Requirement.
  • In-Person Classes:  Professors will record students’ attendance manually through a mechanism of their own choosing, such as by calling the roster, utilizing a seating chart, or by recording attendance as students enter the classroom.  Students should consult their course syllabi for course specific information.
  • Online Classes: Attendance will be recorded via Zoom. Students are advised that they must have their proper name displayed in order to receive attendance credit. Your professor may have additional requirements, such as leaving your camera on, to be marked present.  All online courses meet at the designated days and times on the schedule.

2. Remote Participation for an In-Person Class — Students enrolled in in-person classes are expected to attend class in-person. Receiving attendance credit for live-streaming is reserved for situations where a student needs to self-isolate or quarantine due to COVID or to care for a family member with COVID.  Students who decide to miss an in-person class due to non-COVID reasons need advance permission from the professor to view the class session via live-stream, but the student will not receive attendance credit.

    • Please see below for Policies and Protocols if a student is ill, has been exposed to COVID-19, or has tested positive for COVID-19.
  1. Assessments and Final Exams — The assessments in the Spring will be administered remotely as they were during the Fall semester. A decision has not yet been made about whether final exams will be in-person or remote. We anticipate announcing plans on or before spring break.

POLICIES AND PROTOCOLS IF A STUDENT IS ILL OR HAS BEEN EXPOSED TO COVID-19

Students Who are Ill

  • Step One: Students who experience any symptoms of COVID-19 are required to leave or avoid campus and immediately undergo a free, virtual COVID screening with MUSC.  Click HERE to begin the virtual screening process.
  •  Step Two: If the screening process recommends that you be tested for COVID-19, you must immediately schedule a COVID test with MUSC or a provider of your choice.  If you are not recommended for a COVID test, the normal attendance policy applies, and you should follow up with your primary care provider and follow their instructions.
  •  Step Three: After scheduling your COVID test, you are required to notify the School of Law by completing the form located HERE (form forthcoming).

 Remote Class Attendance: Students who promptly undergo a COVID screening, schedule their test, and notify the school as referenced above, will be allowed to attend in-person classes virtually, for attendance credit.  Students who do not timely follow the above protocol may not receive attendance credit for in-person classes they miss.  Thus, time is of the essence in completing the steps above.

Students Who May Have Been Exposed to COVID-19

 Close Contact: Students who believe they have been in “close contact” (defined by the CDC as within 6 feet of someone who has tested positive for COVID-19 for 15 minutes or more) with someone with COVID are required to leave campus and notify the School of Law immediately, and not return for 14 days following their most recent contact with the infected individual.

Notify the School of Law:  If you believe you have been in close contact with someone who has COVID, you shall notify the School of Law by completing the form located HERE (form forthcoming).

Remote Class Attendance:  Students who experience a “close contact” exposure and timely notify the School of Law will be allowed to attend in-person classes virtually, for attendance credit.  Failure to notify the School of Law in a timely fashion may result in a student not receiving attendance credit for in-person classes they miss.

Important Note: In order to promote effective contact tracing, students who are on campus following a close contact exposure will be required to undergo screening and testing as described above.

Students Who Test Positive for COVID-19

Notify the School of Law: Students who test positive for COVID-19 are required to immediately notify the School of Law by completing the form located HERE. (form forthcoming)

Self-Isolation: Students who test positive for COVID-19 are required to avoid campus and self-isolate for 10 days following the onset of symptoms or their test date, whichever is earlier.

Remote Class Attendance:  Students who test positive for COVID-19 and timely notify the School of Law will be allowed to attend in-person classes virtually, for attendance credit.  Failure to notify the School of Law in a timely fashion may result in a student not receiving attendance credit for in-person classes they miss.

Contact Tracing

Contact Tracing: To promote effective contact tracing, all students who are affected by COVID-19 either through testing positive, or having a close contact exposure, are required to provide detailed information to the School of Law regarding the identity and nature of contacts with School of Law constituents including other students, faculty, staff, and administrators.

CAMPUS HEALTH AND SAFETY PROTOCOLS

  1. Health Checks — Students are responsible for knowing the symptoms of COVID-19. Although temperature checks are not required, prior to arriving on campus each day, you must conduct a self-assessment of your health. If you have any COVID-19-related symptoms, do not come to campus but instead seek direction from your medical provider. If you do not have a doctor, MUSC is providing free COVID-19 screenings through its telehealth serviceBe sure to seek prompt medical attention if you become ill and call 911 if your condition presents an emergency— when seeking care, first inform the provider if you have tested positive for COVID-19.
  2. Masks — Masks or other face coverings are required at all times while on campus. This includes classrooms, the library, and while speaking. A student who meets one of the CDC’s exceptionsto wearing a mask or otherwise requires a disability-related accommodation must contact Dean LawtonStudents will not attempt to enforce the mask rule against other students. If you have concerns about another student appearing not to comply with the Law School’s policies, including the mask requirement, contact Dean Sanders.
  3. Social Distancing — Students are to avoid congregating in groups. Seats in classrooms and the Law Library have been spaced apart to maximize social distancing; please leave them in place. Excess seats have been removed.  Although MUSC recommends spacing of seats 3 to 6’ apart, we have opted for spacing at the higher end of that range (5-6’).
  4. Eating and Drinking — Eating in classrooms is prohibited. Beverages may be consumed in classrooms, but please keep your mask on in between sips. Please dispose of any trash prior to leaving the classroom.
  5. Law Library Policies — Please refer to this link for information about Library Policies.
  6. The Barrister — The Barrister will be open in the Spring. Students may purchase pre-packaged, grab-and-go sandwiches, salads, snacks, and beverages.
  7. Campus Closure on Saturdays — To facilitate cleaning, the entire Law School campus will be closed on Saturdays for the Spring semester.
  8. Classroom Cleaning — Classrooms will be cleaned on an enhanced basis, including between class meetings if possible.  Therefore, please allow our Facilities staff to enter, clean, and exit classrooms before going in.

We strongly encourage everyone to be mindful of their conduct even while off-campus.  Do your part to reduce the spread of the virus.  Avoid locations where large groups are congregating without masks.

Other FAQs

  1. Will extra-curricular and co-curricular programs, such as moot court and mock trial, be held this Spring?Yes, although programs may be modified to a virtual format.
  2. I am a student leader and would like to hold virtual meetings for my organization; will the school provide software to assist?Yes; students should check with Dean Sanders.
  3. Is the Professionalism Series affected? The Professionalism Series will be provided virtually.
  4. If I have a class in-person that ends at 2:50 and then a class online at 3 p.m., how am I supposed to get home in time for that 3 p.m. class? Students in this type of situation can utilize space in the library or on the second floor of 385 Meeting Street.

We will continue to monitor guidance issued by the Centers for Disease Control (CDC), World Health Organization (WHO) and the South Carolina Department of Health and Environmental Control (DHEC) about when to activate our plans for ongoing response to the spread of the virus.  The S.C. Department of Health and Environmental Control (DHEC) has created a webpage with additional information about COVID-19 and its effects in South Carolina.

QUESTIONS?

You may email any of the below associate deans with questions.

 

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