Queen's University Continuity of Education Plan, 2021-2022

In compliance with the Ministry of Colleges and University’s July 16, 2021, memo regarding fall 2021 planning for the postsecondary education sector, the Continuity of Education Plan (CEP) for Queen’s University includes the following:

  1. Information about protocols (i.e., health and safety) in the event of an emergency;

  2. Information on continuity of education in the event of a disruption to in-person teaching and learning; and

  3. Links to useful resources in the event of an emergency

Section 1:  Information about protocols in the event of an emergency

Definition:  For the purposes of the CEP, an Emergency is defined as a confirmed COVID-19 exposure or confirmed COVID-19 case.

Accountability:  The University’s Incident Command Team (ICT)[1] is responsible for making decisions about the appropriate response to Emergencies, based on the advice of public health, to ensure a coordinated and centralized response.  Independent decisions should not be made at the unit level.   

Confirmed COVID-19 exposures or confirmed COVID-19 cases on campus should be reported to the Department of Environmental Health and Safety (EH&S) at safety@queensu.ca or 613-533-2999.  Individuals should not contact Kingston, Frontenac, Lennox and Addington Public Health (KFLAPH) directly – any individual that tests positive or is a close contact of a COVID-19 positive case will be contacted directly by KFLAPH.  Individuals experiencing COVID-19 symptoms should follow KFLAPH’s guidance for assessment and testing

The Director of Environmental Health and Safety will be the lead in contacting KFLAPH and advising senior leadership.   The Director of EH&S will advise the affected unit on next steps as directed by public health. 

KFLAPH will lead contact tracing and provide instruction to individuals with COVID-19 and those exposed to confirmed COVID-19 cases.  Members of the university community should continue to attend campus, following all safety precautions, unless directed otherwise by KFLAPH.

Section 2:  Information on the CEP in the event of a disruption to in-person teaching and learning

A disruption to in-person teaching and learning may occur as the result of the diagnosis of COVID-19 infection in students, staff and/or instructors.

In the event of individual COVID-19 cases

Contact Tracing and Case Investigation: KFLA Public Health will oversee the case and contact management process. All close contacts, as defined by KFLAH through their cases and contact management process, will be contacted directly by KFLA Public Health. No action is required by the course instructor.

Please note that there are legal restrictions relating to sharing personal health information under Ontario's privacy legislation. If an instructor, staff member, or student is notified of a potential or confirmed positive case, including a notice from someone who is self-reporting, they cannot share this information publicly. If an instructor, staff member or student is notified of a potential or confirmed positive case, they must contact Dan Langham, Director Environmental Health and Safety (613-533-6000 x74980; dan.langham@queensu.ca). Dan Langham will contact Public Health for confirmation and will also alert the university's Incident Command Team.

Students with symptoms consistent with COVID-19 should use the COVID-19 self-assessment tool to determine if they need testing.  Students awaiting a negative test result, or who have been instructed to isolate by KFLAPH, must stay home and follow the KFL&A Public Health Protocols and the Student Guidelines from the Fall 2021 Protocols for In-Person Classes on the Kingston Campus.  

Instructors with symptoms consistent with COVID-19 should use the COVID-19 self-assessment tool to determine if they need testing.  Instructors awaiting a negative test result, or who have been instructed to isolate by KFLAPH, must stay home and follow the KFL&A Public Health Protocols and the Instructor Guidelines from the Fall 2021 Protocols for In-Person Classes on the Kingston Campus.  Instructors should contact their department head or dean to determine the appropriate approach to ensure course continuity.  

 

Staff with symptoms consistent with COVID-19 should use the COVID-19 self-assessment tool to determine if they need testing.  Staff awaiting a negative test result, or who have been instructed to isolate by KFLAPH, must stay home and follow the KFL&A Public Health Protocols.

Low-risk contacts, as defined by KFLAPH through their cases and contact management process, will be notified by public health and advised of the appropriate protocols and precautions if needed. Low risk contacts are typically not required to self-isolate. 

High-risk contacts, as defined by KFLAPH through their case and contact management process, who are fully vaccinated without symptoms, and not instructed to self-isolate by KFLAPH:

Who are able to work or study from home should do so for the 10 day period after exposure to a confirmed COVID-19 case.

Who are not able to work or study from home, may continue to attend academic activities or the workplace after a negative Polymerase Chain Reaction (PCR) test result, with the following enhanced precautions for 10 days after exposure to a confirmed COVID-19 case:

  • Remain masked at all times on campus, unless outdoors and able to maintain distance of >2m with other individuals, or in a private room with a door that can be locked

  • Exclusive use of a Health Canada approved medical grade procedural mask available at  vending machines across campus

  • Do not eat or drink around others

  • Do not enter common spaces on campus (such as dining halls, libraries or the Athletics and Recreation Centre)

If you develop symptoms, do not come to campus, proceed to a COVID-19 testing centre and follow  KFL&A Public Health Protocols.

In the event of multiple COVID-19 cases

In the event that multiple positive cases are identified, Queen’s will take direction from the Medical Officer of Health for Kingston, Frontenac, Lennox and Addington Public Health in responding to the situation and the CEP will vary according to the circumstances.  The Incident Command Team, along with the university’s public health advisors, will determine the appropriate response, fulfilling any recommendations made by the Medical Officer of Health, to ensure a coordinated and centralized response.  Independent decisions should not be made at the unit level.  

In the event of significant community spread as determined by KFLAPH

In the event that significant community COVID-19 spread occurs within the Queen’s community, as assessed and directed by KFLAPH, all in-person classes will pivot to remote teaching and learning.  This decision will be made centrally by the ICT in conjunction with the Senior Leadership Team, Deans and Vice-Provosts. The Associate Vice-Principal (Teaching and Learning) will work with faculties to determine the appropriate response to continue other academic related activities to meet program requirements. 

Section 3:  Links to Emergency Resources