Violations of COVID-19 Sanctions and Outcomes
Students who do not adhere to COVID-19 related guidelines, including but not limited, quarantine violations, mask violations, and gathering violations, will be subject to the University’s Student Code of Conduct. This includes both on and off campus behaviors. Any incidents, on or off campus, will be investigated upon receipt of a report from any individual member of the campus community (including students and employees), as well as other law enforcement or first responders.
Sanctions, listed in the Code of Conduct, will vary based on the severity of the violation and its impact to the overall safety of campus. Sanctions may include probation, residential suspension or expulsion, full restrictions, University suspension, or University expulsion. Interim restrictions may be put in place at the time this office receives a report of a violation until the closure of the student conduct process, including all appeals.
- Residential suspension is temporary removal of a student from the residential facilities for a specified period of time. A refund of housing and board costs will not be processed for any residential suspension cases for the semester during which they are suspended.
- Residential Expulsion is permanent removal of the student from the residential facilities. A refund of housing and board costs will not be processed for any residential expulsion cases for the semester during which they are expelled.
- Full Restrictions prohibit the student from any campus events or activities, except for classes. This would include prohibiting students from attending or participating in athletic events, campus life events, and from being on campus except for the times and locations of their classes.
- University Suspension is a temporary removal of the student from the University, including being temporarily banned from visiting campus, for a specified period of time. A letter is also attached to future transcripts stating the student is not eligible to return to campus for non-academic reasons for the period of the suspension. A refund of housing and board costs will not be processed for any residential suspension cases for the semester during which they are suspended.
- University Expulsion is permanent removal of the student from the University, including being banned from visiting campus. A letter is also attached to future transcripts stating the student is not eligible to return to campus for non-academic reasons. A refund of housing and board costs will not be processed for any residential expulsion cases for the semester during which they are expelled.
Campus Guidelines regarding COVID-19
- Initial COVID-19 Testing: Students will be required to complete initial COVID testing as part of the opening of the academic year. Students identified as not completing this testing will be given a deadline to complete testing. If that deadline is not met, the student will be placed on probation and a hold placed on their account, until resolution is met by the student with the University. Further failure to do so will result in charges through the Student Code of Conduct.
- Surveillance Testing: Students may be required to complete subsequent COVID-19 testing as part of a surveillance effort regarding the spread of the virus within the community. Failure to complete this testing will result in probation and a hold on the student’s account until resolution with the University is complete. Further failure to do so will result in charges through the Student Code of Conduct.
- Self Report a Positive Test: Students will be required to report a positive test through the online reporting form. Failure to do so will result in interim full restrictions or interim suspension pending the outcome of a student conduct process. Full restrictions will require that the student participate in classes through virtual means, and will not be permitted on campus until the conclusion of the process. Failure to do so will result in charges through the Student Code of Conduct.
- Self-Isolation Requirement: Students will be required to self-isolate if they receive a positive COVID-19 test result until they are released from isolation by the Wheeling-Ohio County Health Department and the WLU Department of Student Health Services. Notifications will be sent to the student via email regarding their isolation requirements. Failure to do so will result in charges through the Student Code of Conduct.
- Self-Quarantine Requirements: Students will be required to self-quarantine while waiting for test results from a COVID-19 test, if they experience symptoms related to COVID-19 until such time as they are able to be tested, when directed to self-quarantine by a University official and/or public health official, or when named as a contact by public health officials and/or a University official. Failure to do so will result in charges through the Student Code of Conduct.
- Contact Tracing Process: Students are required to participate in contact tracing efforts by the Wheeling Ohio County Health Department, other county Health Departments and/or University officials. Students need to be honest and forthcoming in these process to ensure accurate contact tracing. Failure to do so will result in charges through the Student Code of Conduct.
- Masks/Approved Face Coverings: Students are required to wear masks in any University owned, operated, or leased facility at all times. The only exceptions will be when a student is alone in their own residential room, and in campus dining facilities when you are seated and eating. Additionally, masks are to be worn when outside if you cannot maintain a 6 foot social distance from others in your proximity. Masks are required in all University owned, leased, or operated vehicles. Failure to do so will result in charges through the Student Code of Conduct.
- Social Gatherings: Students are expected to adhere to Executive Orders and other federal, state, local guidelines and laws regarding social gatherings. Violations of these policies, both on and off campus will result in charges through the Student Code of Conduct. (Please refer to Statement on Social Gatherings below, email sent to campus community on 9/11/2020).
- Federal, State, and Local Guidelines: Students are expected to abide by any local, state, or federal pandemic or health safety guidelines. This includes mask policies, social gatherings, social distancing, etc.) Failure to do so will result in charges through the Student Code of Conduct.
- Other Policies/Guidelines: Specific departments, facilities and areas of campus may have additional protocol to adhere to regarding COVID-19 and campus health safety. Students are expected to adhere to those policies as well. Failure to do so will result in charges through the Student Code of Conduct.
Statement on Social Gatherings (Email sent to campus on 09/11/2020)
According to the Executive Order by Governor Justice, social gatherings in the state of WV are limited to 25 individuals. Social distancing, wearing masks and not participating in large social gatherings will limit exposure to and the spread of COVID-19. West Liberty University has released guidelines to students and employees and emphasizes the importance of educating yourself on these guidelines and adhering to them for the safety of the entire campus community.
Violations related to COVID-19 pandemic campus guidelines, will be addressed through the student conduct process. Resulting sanctions may range from probation, full restrictions, suspension, or expulsion from the University, as these violations will be considered actions that threaten the health and safety of members of the campus community.
Gatherings that violate the Executive Order, or any campus policies (including Housing guest policies under COVID-19, defined in the Student Handbook), will result in action through the student conduct process. This will include gatherings both on and off campus. Police officers responding to these calls, will submit a police report to the Student Conduct Coordinator to process.
In dining locations on campus, more than 25 students may be permitted, as occupancy limits have been determined for 50% occupancy similar to the state guidelines for restaurants. Additionally, in cases that there is a class that has more than 25 students, the occupancy limits will direct the decisions for student attendance. If the space allows more than 25 students at the current 50% occupancy, then the class would be approved to meet. However, in both circumstances, students and employees are still required to wear a mask and maintain social distancing.
For additional information on the student conduct process, please refer to www.westliberty.edu/conduct.
Quarantine Instructions and Information
Students who will be required to quarantine include those who have been tested for COVID-19, those who test positive for COVID-19, and those who are determined to be contacts of a positive case of COVID-19. West Liberty University will work in conjunction with Ohio County Health Department to gather information on contacts and test cases. However, WLU may require that a student quarantine prior to notice by the Ohio County Health Department in accordance with campus safety guidelines and protocol.
Students who are required to quarantine and who live in campus owned or leased housing will be advised to return home (off-campus) to quarantine. If is physically unable to return home (for example: due to travel arrangements), they may be temporarily assigned to a campus isolation room, or other designated campus location, for the duration of their quarantine. The student in isolation/quarantine will not be able to leave the location of their isolation for any reason except to seek medical care. No guests will be permitted into the isolation area for any reason other than medical care.
Students who do not reside in campus owned or leased housing will be required to remain off campus through the duration of their quarantine period. The Office of Housing & Residence Life will work with students quarantined on campus to provide meal delivery during isolation.
If a student is in quarantine off campus, they will need to complete an online assessment (which will be sent to them by Student Health Services) for review prior to approval to return to campus. If a student is in a campus isolation room or quarantine location, they will also be required to complete this assessment prior to leaving the isolation or quarantine location.
Any student who violates any quarantine protocol, will be processed through the campus student conduct system. If a student is quarantined on campus, they will be required to immediately leave campus and placed on interim residential suspension pending the outcome of the student conduct process. Violations of any COVID-19 related policies can result in probation, full restrictions, suspension, or expulsion, among other educational sanctions.
Policy Changes Under COVID-19 for Housing & Residence Life
- The only guests permitted will be residents within the residential facilities of West Liberty University.
- Non-student and off-campus students will not be permitted in any portion of the residential facility.
- Request for exception to the guest policy may be considered in medical instances and for the purpose of moving in or out of the residential facility, but must be submitted and approved by the Executive Director of Housing & Student Life in advance.
- Only 1 guest will be permitted per room/apartment at any given time.
Contactless Move-In/Move-Out/Room Change Process
- Forms will be completed online and via email
- Room change request online to be completed by resident. Approval sent by Area Coordinator for Residential Enrollment via email to resident and copied to ACs and Hall Directors for the buildings involved in change.
- Residence Life Review Board and Cancellation form completed online by resident. Approval will be emailed with information on move out process.
- In the case of a room change, RA will confirm key return through new online form.For a move out or room change, the key envelopes will be available at RA office. Resident will leave their old key on the dresser or kitchen counter of their residence hall room or apartment, respectively, labeled with student’s name, building and room number.
- In the case of room changes or move in, a new key will be available on the dresser or kitchen counter of their new residence hall room or apartment, respectively, labeled with student’s name, building and room number.
Facility Utilization Changes/Common Areas
- Students will be allowed to utilize common areas under specific guidelines:
- Occupancy will be determined for each facility and students will need to adhere to those occupancy numbers, which will be a portion of the overall capacity for occupancy.
- Students must always social distance 6 or more feet and/or wear a mask in the lobby of the facility.
- Any violations of policy will lead to revocation of the ability of the student to utilize the common area space.
Extended Stay Policies
- Extended stay policies will be stricter in accordance with current practices. Students will be permitted to stay on campus during times of closure for the following reasons:
- Students with a 12-month lease in apartments
- Students with no other safe housing option (to be reviewed by Executive Director of Housing & Student Life on a case-by-case basis.
- Students actively enrolled in online classes without adequate Wi-Fi options at home.
- Students approved as essential employees for on campus employment during the break period.
- Students who are enrolled in a class that requires internship, practicum or student teaching hours during the break.
- Extended stay requests will be submitted through online form and notice of decision emailed to student’s university email address.
Policy Updates (during COVID-19) for Fitness Facilities (Krise Fitness Center and Wellness Center)
Face Mask Policy: In response to both concerns by students and the changing atmosphere related to the COVID-19 pandemic, we are updating our mask policy for both Krise Fitness Center and the Wellness Center. Patrons will be required to wear masks at all times in both facilities except when they are working out on cardio equipment (elliptical, arc trainer, treadmill, bike, and stair climber). Unless you are actively working out on those cardio items, you must wear a mask. This includes while utilizing core equipment, strength training machines, free weights, squat racks, and when moving between equipment. This will help us in our efforts to slow the spread and keep our campus safe. Thank you for your understanding and compliance.
Guest Policy: At this time, no guest passes or guests will be admitted to the facility.
Facility Updates: Machines have been placed six feet or more apart, so no machines or equipment can be moved. Water fountains will be turned off due to the pandemic as well.
Cleaning Efforts: Sanitizing wipes will be available in the facility at all times. Patrons must clean machines before and after each use. Staff will also assist in wiping down equipment hourly, and professional cleaning company will clean and sanitize daily.
Other Policies: Items left in the facility will be discarded nightly. Patrons must all wear shirts, shorts/pants, and appropriate shoes. Changes to policies may occur throughout the semester due to the fluid nature of the pandemic. Notifications will be sent via WLU email and posted at the facility as well.