COVID-19: Albany Law School Fall 2022 protocols
Throughout the COVID-19 pandemic, Albany Law School has worked to safeguard the health of our community while simultaneously providing the rich in-person learning and professional opportunities that are at the hallmarks of our residential programs. With the cooperation of our students, faculty, and staff, we have been reasonably successful in achieving both goals.
As we move into our fourth academic year navigating the pandemic, we are facing the reality that Covid-19 is going to be a part of our lives for the foreseeable future. We are also facing significant changes in guidance and procedures by local health departments and partner institutions that have caused us to rethink law school protocols.
While the Law School will continue to refer to CDC guidance and the advice of other public health authorities in making decisions regarding COVID-19 protocols, we will begin to shift our approach from heavy regulation to individual responsibility, relying more directly on the good faith, professionalism, and care of individuals in taking precautions than we have in early days of the pandemic.
Effective immediately, the following protocols and guidelines will take effect:
All students, faculty, staff, and law school visitors are required to be vaccinated and to have had an initial booster when eligible, unless granted an exception on religious or medical grounds.
Albany Law School is a mask friendly community. Masks are generally not required for vaccinated individuals. However, individual faculty members, and individual law school departments, have the right to require masks in their classrooms or offices.
Individuals who received religious or medical exemptions to the vaccine requirement must wear masks when inside law school buildings.
As always, we support the choice of individuals to wear masks and expect members of our community to respect local masking rules.
In addition, the Law School reserves the right to reinstate a mask mandate should public health conditions change within the law school or in the Albany region.
The Law School will no longer conduct testing. Free rapid tests are available through the U.S. government: https://www.covid.gov/tests and from your health insurance company: https://www.cms.gov/how-to-get-your-at-home-OTC-COVID-19-test-for-free
Students and employees with symptoms should take a rapid test at home or go to their medical provider.
All community members are asked to self-test the day before returning to campus from summer break. If you test negative, it is not necessary to upload results to share my health. Testing will be on an honor system.
Please do not come to campus if you test positive. If you do test positive, please upload your results to ShareMyHealth and await instructions from HR.
Albany Law will continue to require more protective measures than that required by the CDC for individuals who test positive for COVID-19. Positive individuals must remain off campus and isolate for 10 days, or until they can produce a negative antigen test taken after five or more days from the onset of symptoms or the date of a positive test. The isolation period runs from the onset of symptoms or the date of a positive test result, whichever is earlier.
Employees and students who test positive should upload results to ShareMyHealth and notify email@example.com. Students in isolation will be provided with recordings of missed classes.
The Law School will no longer conduct contact tracing. Individuals who test positive for COVID-19 are asked to notify any individual with whom they had close contact about possible exposure. Individuals who need help identifying or reaching out to contacts should reach out to HR at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Individuals notified of close contact with a person who tests positive should monitor for symptoms and self-test 3-5 days after exposure. Those with positive household members or significant exposure may choose to isolate and work remotely or access recordings of classes.
Invited guests and alumni are welcome to visit campus if they provide proof of vaccination or a negative COVID test result from a test taken during the 24-hour period prior to arrival. Students planning events should consult with the Office of Student Affairs for current policy. Employees planning events should consult the events information on the school’s COVID-19 webpage.
Please know that we continue to monitor the pandemic closely and consult with outside public health advisors. Should circumstances around the pandemic change in any significant way, we are prepared to adjust our protocols accordingly.
- Public Health and Safety Committee