UNC-Chapel Hill undergraduates to begin fully remote instruction after COVID-19 cases increase on campus

UNC-Chapel Hill undergraduates to begin fully remote instruction after COVID-19 cases increase on campus
UNC said Saturday that there have been cases of coronavirus reported on its Chapel Hill campus. (Source: Jon Gardiner)

CHARLOTTE, N.C. (WBTV) - The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill will be moving to fully remote instruction for undergraduate classes after a major increase in COVID-19 cases on campus.

The remote learning will begin on Wednesday, Aug. 19.

University officials are reducing campus activities and are asking the majority of the school’s undergraduate residential students to change their residential plans for the fall.

Within the past week, the university reported that 130 COVID-19 tests came back positive last week, along with five employees.

More than 950 students tested for the virus, and 130 of the 824 tests came back positive.

The previous week, from Aug. 3-9, there were just 10 positive results.

The positivity rate rose from 2.8 percent to 13.6 percent over the past two weeks.

“There are no easy answers as the nation navigates through the pandemic,” Chancellor Kevin M. Guskiewicz and Executive Vice Chancellor Provost Robert A. Blouin said in a joint statement. “At this point, we haven’t received any information that would lead to similar modifications at any of our other universities. Whether at Chapel Hill or another institution, students must continue to wear facial coverings and maintain social distancing, as their personal responsibility, particularly in off-campus settings, is critical to the success of this semester and to protect public health.”

In total, 279 students and 45 employees have tested positive for the virus.

Last week, the university reported coronavirus clusters at three residence halls and a fraternity.

A cluster was reported at the Sigma Nu fraternity, as well as Ehringhaus Hall, Granville Towers and at Hinton James residence hall.

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