Dozens of faculty and staff members of Oklahoma State University are asking the university to increase their safety protocols to fight the spread of COVID-19.
They outlined their requests in a letter to president Dr. Kayse Shrum and the university’s Board of Regents.
“All of the faculty are feeling a little on edge,” OSU administrator Rosemary Avance said. “I keep hearing people use the phrase like, ‘I’m waiting for the other shoe to drop,’ or ‘I just feel like I’m constantly waiting for bad news,’ and I think that's true for me to.”
Avance is one of several OSU administrators to sign the letter. In fewer than two weeks of classes, Avance said policies have changed numerous times and it's growing more difficult to keep track of them.
“I have a student in one of my classes who has an issue that makes being around other students who might be carriers very dangerous for her and I don't know how...we're not given clear instructions on how we can accommodate individual students,” Avance said.
A few concerns administrators would like to see addressed are: Requiring COVID-19 vaccinations for students, faculty, and staff; increasing COVID-19 testing and limiting classroom capacity.
“We're listening intently to learn the concerns of all parties involved as we develop policies to address the issues we face on campus,” OSU president Dr. Kayse Shrum said. “One thing we have learned throughout the pandemic is that we must remain nimble in our approach and adapt to public health guidance needed.”
Avance hopes school officials read the letter and understand how important it is for teachers to have more control of their classrooms. She believes it will help with the overall safety for themselves and students.