By Breegan Petruska
After new guidance from the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services and MIOSHA, Grand Rapids Community College will move forward in its return to campus plan.
Starting June 29, GRCC will begin Phase 5.1 of their re-opening and COVID-19 response plan. This step will remove mask restrictions for all GRCC staff and students, as well as no longer requiring daily health screenings.
At this time, plexiglass barriers will remain in place, but all COVID-19 signage around campus will be updated to promote community health and wellness for faculty and students.
In an email to staff, the COVID Response Team stated, “We are developing new signs and messaging focusing on keeping the GRCC community healthy and well and encouraging the behaviors that we now know help reduce the spread of the virus – frequent hand washing, staying home when ill or not feeling well, distancing as feasible, wearing a mask if preferred, getting a vaccine to protect yourself and others!”
In this step toward returning to a pre-COVID-19 norm, all staff can return to work on campus, activities and events can start taking place, the fieldhouse is open for students/members and there are no restrictions on outdoor gatherings. At this time, face coverings are still required for those entering the Phyllis Fratzke Early Childhood Learning Laboratory.
“Many people may still be more comfortable with social distancing or continued mask wearing and they should continue to do so,” the email stated. “Just as we asked for patience and grace as we traveled through COVID, please grant patience and grace to each other and our students as we begin to travel out of COVID.”