PHOENIX — As the number of coronavirus cases continues to rise in Arizona, Grand Canyon University is sharing more about its plans to keep students and staff safe this upcoming school year. The plan includes shutting down the on-campus GCU Hotel July 1, so it can be used as a quarantine facility.
In an update to employees, students and their families sent on Thursday, the university highlighted several health and safety protocols that will be in place to try and slow the spread of the virus. The announcement came as the university's men's basketball team remains in quarantine after four student-athletes and two support staff members tested positive for COVID-19.
The university will use a blended learning model to keep classrooms at or below 50 percent capacity and help with physical distancing. Students in most programs will also have the option to take their coursework fully online. Masks will be required when physical distancing is not possible.
Calendar adjustments are also part of the plan, with face-to-face instruction set to end before the Thanksgiving holiday break for most programs. Students will have the option of staying home or returning to campus, but classes will be finished in an online format.
Student-athletes and student leaders returning to campus before Welcome Week will be tested for the coronavirus, and tests will remain available for students who want one throughout the year.
Instruction for the fall semester is scheduled to begin August 24, with more updates expected as that start date nears.