Ozark Christian College has lifted a weeklong “self-quarantine” order that had asked students to remain in their dorm rooms as much as possible.
In-person classes resumed today after a full-week of remote learning. In-person chapel also is slated to resume.
“Our numbers of isolations and quarantines have improved,” Damien Spikereit, executive vice president of administration, wrote on OCC’s website late last week. “This is an answer to many prayers, and I’m proud of the self-discipline and wisdom you’ve shown this week.”
Ozark’s “COVID Dashboard” as of noon Monday listed 6 students in isolation, meaning they are either symptomatic or have tested positive for COVID-19. (Students in “isolation” are restricted to “a pre-arranged location” while the school “provides for cleaning, academic, and nutritional needs.”) Additionally, 31 students and 2 employees officially remain listed as “in quarantine.”
On Sept. 9, the school said 10 percent of its residential student population was in quarantine or isolation.
“We want to protect you from getting sick, and we want to protect you from getting stuck,” Spikereit told students via Ozark’s announcement. On average, he wrote, five students are placed in quarantine every time one student enters isolation. The numbers of individuals in isolation and quarantine are reduced, he wrote, “when we practice social distancing.”
He encouraged students to continue to significantly limit their interactions on and off campus, to wear their mask on and off campus, and to socially distance as much as possible.
Despite the announcement, all intramurals remain suspended and the Multi-Purpose Building/Fitness Center remains closed. The Dining Hall continues to serve to-go meals only.
The big fear, Spikereit wrote, is that students will react to the news of the lifting of this self-quarantine by saying, “Quarantine is over—we’re free!” He said, “That mind-set will quickly undo all the good you’ve accomplished this week.”