The Dragon Plan: Tiffin University’s plan for spring 2021

Message from Our President

Greetings, Students, Faculty, and Staff,

Writing this letter today finds me so very grateful and proud of the TU Community for the hard work and dedication each and every one of you have demonstrated as we continue to navigate through the COVID-19 pandemic together.  You have all shown such incredible respect and care for each other by complying with pandemic protocols set in place, and for that, I say thank you!

As you know, the State of Ohio is now dealing with even higher percentages of COVID-19 spread since the tracking began in March 2020.  Rest assured that we continue to review our plans for the start of Spring Semester 2021 and are prepared to make pivotal changes as needed to ensure the health and safety of all TU students and employees.

With that said, I would like to share with you our updated Dragon Plan (as of today) for the upcoming spring semester.  This Plan necessitates updated requirements and expectations aligned with our ICARE Values. Being ever mindful of our highlighted ICARE value this year of RESPECT, I am confident that all Dragons will adhere to these expectations out of respect for the safety and well being of others.

The Dragon Plan communicates regular updates on our plan for returning to campus each semester, COVID-19 news and developments, and any new requirements or guidance that the University receives from our state and local health departments.

Tiffin University continues to work with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the Ohio Department of Health (ODH) and regional and local health care partners to comply with directives and guidelines to safeguard our students, faculty, staff and visitors to reduce the risk of spreading the COVID-19 virus on our campus.

All of you have done a remarkable job of complying to the pandemic protocols during the fall semester, and together we will move through spring semester as well.

My very best wishes to each and everyone of you this holiday season.  Please stay safe and healthy over the break, and we'll see you in January 2021!

Regards,

Dr. Lillian Schumacher, President

 

 

 

Definitions

Isolation: Separates sick people with a contagious disease from people who are not sick.

Quarantine: Separates and restricts the movement of people who were exposed to a contagious disease to see if they become sick.

Self-health Assessment: A self-health assessment is an evaluation of one's own physical well being based on the health screen questionnaire taken prior to coming onto campus. 

Hybrid Teaching Initiative: A comprehensive training and support program provided by the Center for Online and Extended Learning (COEL) to assist faculty in the creation of agile Hybrid instruction (Split-Session Hybrid and Virtual Hybrid courses) to comply with anticipated CDC guidelines, maximize instructional continuity, and minimize disruptions related to transitioning to and from remote learning.

  • Split-Session Hybrid: When students are on campus, courses will be delivered as Split-Session Hybrids where seated course enrollment is split across two identical class sessions, maintaining social distancing protocols. The instructors will “teach” the same class twice in a week, with half of the enrolled students attending each of the sessions. Asynchronous activities, delivered via the TEC Companion Shell, will replace the missing instructional “seat time.”

  • Virtual Hybrid: When instruction is required to be delivered remotely, the Virtual Hybrid course sections, which combine required real-time participation via web conferencing technologies with online-delivered teaching and learning activities, will be employed. The Virtual Hybrid mode, which is again delivered via the TEC Companion Shell, allows for distance delivery of coursework while retaining the direct instruction and interaction with faculty that our seated students have come to expect.

  • TEC Companion Shells: All non-online course sections feature a TEC Companion course shell in the Learning Management System (Moodle).  The new TEC shell includes refinements and integrated structures that facilitate the seamless transition from in-person to remote instruction while retaining inherent flexibilities that allow for different pedagogies and instructional approaches.

Social Distancing: Keeping a safe space between yourself and other people who are not from your household. To practice social or physical distancing, stay at least six feet (about two arms’ length) from other people who are not from your household in both indoor and outdoor spaces.

Possible COVID-19 Exposure: All individuals, other than those with a known risk to exposure.

Probable COVID-19 Exposure: Individuals who have had close contact (less than six feet) for more than 15 minutes to an individual with COVID-19 symptoms or an individual who has tested positive for COVID-19.

COVID-19 Positive: When an individual’s test results are positive for the COVID-19 virus.

BasiCare Plus: Private and confidential, unlimited 24/7 ZERO copay physician access on the nation's largest telehealth network, MDLIVE® (by phone or video) - family members included! Provides ZERO copay for more than 90% of the generic medications prescribed by telemedicine. Provides savings on many other generic and name brand prescriptions at over 65,000 locations nationwide. Nationwide Rx Access - Over 65,000 locations for your free and discounted medications; CVS, Walgreens, Walmart, Costco, Rite Aid, Discount Drug Mart, Albertsons, Kroger, Kmart and many more!  

COVID-19 Testing: When an individual is instructed to go to a healthcare facility to get tested for COVID-19 by a healthcare worker. 

Administrator On Call (AOC): The AOC is a full-time staff member who is available to students, faculty, and staff to provide support in crisis situations 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. This staff member has been training on handling specific issues related to COVID-19 including providing support, access to resources, access to food, etc. for students placed in quarantine or isolation housing. 

 

Campus Points of Contact

  • Overall Campus Response - Sean Durocher

  • Academics - Dr. Peter J. Holbrook

  • Athletics - Lonny Allen

  • Health Services - Fran Ford, CNP

  • Campus Care Coordinator- Kali Smith

  • Human Resources - Deidre Hassinger

  • Student Life - Jacob Simon

  • Tiffin Arts - Brad Rees

 

Phased Return to Campus – Spring Semester

Phase I: November 23 - December 22

Housing contracts end November 25, 2020 and only approved housing extensions are allowed in campus housing

  • Reduced office hours
  • Reduced staff interactions
  • Continued remote work

Phase 2: December 23 - January 5

  • Campus is closed

Phase 3: December 28 - January 6

  • Winter sports report back to campus

Phase 4: January 6 - January 15

  • Campus returns to normal operating hours

Phase 5: January 17 - January 30

  • Classes will be on-campus remote 
  • Extracurricular activities will resume 

Phase 6: February 1

  • Seated split-hybrid classes resume

 

Health and Safety Practices for Dragon Nation

Introduction: Tiffin University will follow CDC, State and Local guidelines to promote a safe campus. 

Employees

  • All employees will complete a self-health assessment in the TU Mobile App through READY prior to reporting to work. If an employee shows symptoms of COVID-19, they should not report to work and contact their supervisor. TU will periodically notify the campus community of the total number of COVID-19 positive cases, as appropriate.
  • Employees must properly wear a facial covering unless the employee works alone in an assigned area, facial coverings are not advisable for health reasons, and/or there is a functional (practical) reason for an employee not to wear a facial covering in the workplace. 
    • Reasonable accommodations will be considered for employees who have a documented medical condition to continue remote work.
  • Must fill out the COVID-19 Reasonable Accommodations form and return it to the Office of Human Resources.  https://mytu.tiffin.edu/employeeinformation/humanresources/Pages/default.aspx.
  • Employees will be expected to take personal responsibility when traveling outside the State of Ohio.
  • Employees will limit face-to-face meetings.
  • Employees will actively practice social distancing of six feet or more.
  • Employees are expected to clean their own offices when it comes to wiping down desks, keyboards, mice, phones, etc. Cleaning agents, paper towels, and gloves will be provided in centralized locations for employees to retrieve necessary cleaning supplies. 

Office Guidelines

  • Walk-in appointments are not permitted. Students should contact an office they wish to meet with prior to visiting the office. 
  • Departments will be expected to create and maintain protocol for managing student traffic in their office. 
  • As much as possible, virtual meetings should be implemented. 
  • Departments will be responsible for following the University’s guidelines when hosting events. 

Residential Students

  • All campus residential halls and rooms have been sanitized prior to student arrival. 
  • All shared spaces in housing will continue to be cleaned and sanitized daily. Students will be responsible for cleaning their own rooms
  • TU will provide access to hand soap, hand sanitizer, sanitizing supplies for students to use inside residence halls and houses, when requested.
  • Facial coverings will be required in all residential halls except for in residential rooms, in the restrooms and when wearing a facial covering is not feasible. 
  • Students will be asked to actively practice social distancing of six feet or more in the residential halls and houses.
  • A plan for isolation and quarantine housing will be implemented utilizing campus spaces separate from other housing units to provide housing to students identified as testing with probable or positive COVID-19.
  • No room changes will be permitted except for emergency situations.
  • Students will be expected to take personal responsibility when travelling outside the State of Ohio.
  • Additional guidelines and expectations can be found in the Student Affairs COVID-19 Guidelines.

Dining Facilities

  • Cole Dining Hall will open January 16, 2021 for brunch at 11 a.m. and will resume normal operating hours.
  • There will be a dedicated entrance and exit with appropriate signage before entering.
  • There will be floor markings for designated waiting areas with six feet spacing.
  • Seating in Cole Dining Hall will be reduced by 50%, to a maximum occupancy limit of 180.
    • Tables will be spaced six feet apart. 
  • Most buffet-style and self-serve food stations will be eliminated.
    • Pre-made salads, breakfast items like yogurt, ect., will be offered instead.
    • All stations will be served by an AVI team member.
    • Self-serve beverage stations will require single-use cups, and no personal cups or beverage containers will be allowed.  
    • No refills will be allowed. A new cup must be obtained.
  • A disposable system for all customer plates, utensils and cups will be adopted for the fall semester.
    • Salt and pepper shakers will be removed from tables.
    • Napkin dispensers will be removed from tables.
  • Meal Times:
    • Meal times will be as follows (Cole Dining Hall will be closed between meals):
      • Breakfast: Monday through Friday 7 to 9:30 a.m.
      • Lunch: Monday through Friday 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. (Entree and Fusion to close at 2 p.m.)
      • Dinner: Monday through Thursday 4:30 to 8 p.m. (Entree and Fusion to close at 7:30 p.m.)
        • Dinner: Friday 4:30 to 7 p.m. (These times can be adjusted if needed.)
      • Saturday and Sunday
        • Brunch:  11:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m.  (These times can be adjusted if needed.)
        • Dinner:  4:30 to 7:00 p.m.  (These times can be adjusted if needed.)
  • All dining areas will be sanitized daily and in between dining services.

Classroom Instruction

  • Prior to coming on to campus every day, students are required to complete a self-health assessment via the TU Mobile App. If they show symptoms of COVID-19, they should not attend class and notify their instructor. Instructors will notify their Dean.
  • Students must wear a facial covering, unless facial coverings are not advisable for health reasons and/or there is a functional (practical) reason for a student not to wear a facial covering in the classroom. 
  • Tiffin University will be implementing social distancing requirements of six feet or more.
  • Hybrid course delivery will be implemented for certain courses and sections where social distancing of six feet or more cannot be obtained to maintain a safe and healthy teaching environment. 
  • Students and faculty will be responsible to disinfect their own work space before and after class. 
  • Students who refuse to wear a facial covering will be asked to leave the classroom and building. 
  • Students wishing to complete internships during this time are to work closely with the internship coordinator for their school. 
  • For registration, class schedule, or online enrollment questions, please contact academicadvising@tiffin.edu.
  • Guidance for specialized programs can be found below:

Co-Curricular Life

  • Student gatherings will actively practice social distancing requirements of six feet or more.
  • Continue technological gatherings and virtual meetings.
  • Provide and consistently reinforce messaging on good hygiene.
  • Facial coverings will be required for all in-person activities.
  • Additional guidelines and expectations can be found in the Student Affairs COVID-19 Guidelines.

Visitors and Vendors

  • Will complete a self-health assessment via READY prior to coming on campus. If a visitor shows symptoms of COVID-19, they should not come to campus.
  • Visitors must wear a facial covering unless facial coverings are not advisable for health reasons, and/or there is a functional (practical) reason for a visitor not to wear a facial covering on campus.
  • Will actively practice social distancing requirements of six feet or more.
  • No visitors will be allowed in residential halls.
  • University requires any vendors coming to campus to be screened by their company prior to their shift.
  • The University reserves the right to not permit an individual(s) onto campus who may be showing symptoms of COVID-19 or develop symptoms while on campus.

Athletics 

  • The Athletics department will continue to follow guidelines from the NCAA, G-MAC, federal, state and local agencies.
  • For more information, please go to Athletics information

 

Education and Training

New and transfer students will complete a COVID-19 training and education program prior to the start of classes. It includes both a universal video component for all members of the TU community and web-based materials. Topics covered will include the following:

  1. Facts about coronavirus and COVID-19
  2. Protecting yourself and others
  3. Navigating the new normal
  4. The Dragon Pledge

 

Guidelines on COVID-19 Exposure 

Probable COVID-19 Cases

  • Students who report COVID-19 symptoms on the health assessment or who have had contact with an individual who tests positive for COVID-19 will be required to call Tiffin University's Health Center.
    • Students will be required to stay in their on-campus residential hall or off-campus home and/or return to their on-campus residential hall or off-campus home until further instruction has been given from a TU Health Center worker.
    • Students should contact their professor(s) if they will be missing classes. 
    • Students should contact their coach if they are going to miss practice.
    • Students who need accommodations for courses must contact the Office of Disability Services at tiffin.edu/studentservices/disability-services
  • Employees who report COVID-19 symptoms on the health assessment or who have had contact with an individual who tested positive for COVID-19 will be required to stay at home and contact their family physician or Teladoc for further instructions.
    • Employees should contact their supervisor if they are going to be absent from work.
    • Employees must work with the Office of Human Resources for accommodations.

 

Positive COVID-19 Cases

  • Tiffin University has designated a point of contact for communication about COVID-19 procedures with the campus, relevant state and local departments and agencies.
  • TU will notify the campus community of an employee or student with a COVID-19 positive case as appropriate. All HIPAA, ADA and FERPA regulations will be followed.
  • Students who test positive for COVID-19 will be placed in isolation housing.
    • Students will be given the option to go home if they test positive.
      • Students can return to campus once they receive a notification that they are clear from the Tiffin University Health Center. Students who need accommodations with classwork must contact the Office of Disability Services. tiffin.edu/studentservices/disability-services
  • Employees who test positive for COVID-19 will need to isolate for 10 days.
  • Employees who are exposed in the workplace will be sent home and asked to telework for 10 days. 
  • The workspace used by infected individuals will be sanitized after the area has been closed off for 24 hours. 
  • Employees can return to work if they are:
    • Ten days from first symptoms, three days without fever without taking fever reducing medicine and an improvement in symptoms OR 
    • Three days without fever without taking fever reducing medicine, and an improvement in symptoms. 
    • Employees must work with Human Resources for accommodations.

 

Equity, Access & Opportunity - Office for Disability Services 

Tiffin University’s Commitment to Equal Access and Diversity 

Tiffin University (“TU” or the “University”) is committed in policy and practice to providing an educational experience and environment that is equally accessible for all, including those with a documented disability, so that individuals with disabilities have equal access and opportunity to learn and achieve based on their innate abilities and are not inhibited by barriers created by the interaction between their disability and the institutional environment and/or academic requirements. 

TU’s Office for Disability Services (ODS) supports this institutional commitment to diversity by providing educational opportunities for qualified individuals with disabilities through accessible programs and services in compliance with Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 and Title III of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) of 1990 ), as amended by the ADA Amendments Act of 2008, and other applicable federal and state regulations that prohibit discrimination on the basis of disability. In addition, the Office serves as a resource to the University community by providing consultation and advocacy services related to compliance. 

TU is committed to ensuring equal access for students with disabilities during the COVID-19 pandemic. Students who need accommodations and services to support healthy and safe engagement in learning and campus life are encouraged to follow the same process as established by the University for requesting reasonable accommodations.

TU will provides a wide range of COVID-19 related accommodations and services including:

  • Coordination of remote instruction for students with underlying conditions.
  • Housing accommodations (i.e. single room, air purifier).

Students are encouraged to submit requests in advance of the need for accommodations. Individuals must submit disability verification that meets disability documentation guidelines and includes an explicit recommendation for COVID-19 accommodations and why they are medically necessary to facilitate access to the classroom and/or campus life.

For additional information and to begin the registration process, you may go to tiffin.edu/studentservices/disability-services

Because of the evolving, fluid situation and regulations, Tiffin University will continue to make a best faith effort to protect all faculty, staff and students.