Sorority faces COVID-19 outbreak: As students at Oklahoma State University (OSU) enter their fall semester, the Pi Beta Phi sorority remains quarantined after 23 members tested positive for COVID-19. After participating in recruitment week, Pi Beta Phi sorority sisters are isolated as an entirety in their house until further notice. To prevent further outbreak, OSU is requiring that all students be tested upon arrival to campus.
Significance: In this season of what some call a “new normal”, schools nationwide are taking extra precaution to ensure the health and safety of students. Guidelines for procedures that should take place in the school environment to minimize the spread of COVID-19 have been posted by the Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). By following these guidelines, universities will be able to provide students with the opportunity to participate in social activities without compromising their health.
White House declares teachers as essential workers: The White House has officially declared teachers as essential workers in an effort to encourage the re-opening of schools this fall. President Donald Trump said that he will “put pressure” on governors to open schools if necessary. By designating teachers as essential workers, the White House is exempting teachers from quarantine requirements after exposure to COVID-19 as long as they aren’t displaying any symptoms.
Significance: Now that teachers are required to return to the classroom after exposure to COVID-19, the number in cases could potentially spike. Though it will be ensured that the teachers returning are asymptomatic, there is a possibility that they will unknowingly contribute to the spread of the virus and that others who they may come in contact with will be at risk. Not only will this affect the surrounding students and faculty, but the exposure to COVID-19 without proper quarantining can also affect the families of those who are regularly exposed to the school environment.