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Ten Miami students test positive for COVID-19

<p>Residence halls implement new COVID-19 color coding system to track the spread of the virus. </p>

Residence halls implement new COVID-19 color coding system to track the spread of the virus.

Miami University President Greg Crawford announced that 10 students and two employees have tested positive for COVID-19 since the start of the school year. 

In an email sent to the Miami community on Friday, Aug. 21, Crawford wrote that the positive tests occurred on Miami’s Oxford campus. 

“This week we have all been witnessing a troubling spread of COVID-19 on university campuses across the nation,” Crawford wrote, “and we will continue to monitor developments as many more schools begin to reopen next week so we can learn from their challenges and decisions.”

Kimberly Moore, dean of students, said her office is working closely with Butler County Health Department. 

“We need students to take this seriously,” Moore said. “There are lots of indications that some students — more than we would like — are not taking this seriously, and that is a real threat to our community and our ability to continue to operate as planned.”

Moore said off-campus students who tested positive are quarantined to their off-campus residence. If the student is on campus, Moore said the student will most likely remain quarantined on-campus. 

Crawford wrote that Miami created a dashboard to keep track of the number of students and faculty that have tested positive each week. According to the dashboard, results are reported by the Oxford Campus Student Health Service and Employee Health Center. 

“This system will allow the community to monitor the spread of the virus among our community while also protecting the confidentiality of those infected,” Crawford wrote. 

Moore said coronavirus testing is available at Student Health Services.

“If [students] have suspected symptoms and/or test positive, it is critical that they use the COVID-19 reporting form or go to Student Health Services.”

In addition to the dashboard, Crawford wrote that Miami will now be using the app Campus Clear, a symptom tracking app. Students must self-report their symptoms before being allowed onto campus. 

“An illness/absence reporting system is also in place to help us track potential outbreaks in our community,” Crawford wrote. “We are also working with our campus health provider, TriHealth, to expand on-campus testing.”

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The announcement of these positive test results come after City Council passed ordinances requiring facial coverings in public spaces and prohibiting gatherings of more than 10 people.

Miami is currently planning to begin in-person classes on Sept. 21. However, that decision is not final. 

“It is our sincerest hope that we resume face-to-face instruction on September 21, and that we do not see further significant outbreaks at other universities or here in our local community,” Crawford wrote, “but we must be realistic in our assessments.”