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MSU to return to seated classes next week, but masks will still be required

Sign at Missouri State University
Seth Graham
Sign at Missouri State University

MSU President Clif Smart announced plans for the spring semester on Tuesday.

As college students prepare to head back to class amid a surge of COVID-19 cases, the president of Missouri State University has announced plans for the spring semester, which starts January 18.

In his blog, Clif’s Notes, Tuesday, Clif Smart said the current masking policy at Missouri State will remain in place, but university officials will re-evaluate the policy in mid-February. It requires masks in certain areas, including classroom buildings.

Flexibility will be necessary, according to Smart. Classes will remain seated, but professors should be prepared to move to an online teaching format if needed. Smart said faculty should also plan to accommodate the large number of students who are expected to contract the virus and who will miss class meetings and assignments.

The university is providing employees with up to eight additional days of paid COVID-19 leave to use if they become sick or if they must care for someone with the virus.