In an attempt to curb the spread of COVID-19 after the holidays, McMaster University has announced that the winter term will begin a week later on January 11th.
Originally, everyone was due back to classes on January 4th, but the university said in a statement that the additional week is to support staff and students’ wellbeing and mental health amid the pandemic.
Important update on Winter Term: Classes will start a week late — on Jan. 11, 2021. Mac will reopen after the break on Jan 4. Reading Week will still be the week of Feb. 15. More details and info are in a letter from Provost Susan Tighe. https://t.co/Hp9V7rpGhD
— McMaster University (@McMasterU) November 19, 2020
The recommendation was made by the Virtual Learning Task Force, Presidents and Vice-Presidents. Although campus will reopen on January 4th, classes will not resume until January 11th.
Classes will be extended and the exam period will be changed so there is no overlap so the semester can end on the scheduled day. Reading week will still begin on February 15th.
There will be some exemptions to the January 11th start as some clinical placements and program requirements cannot be altered at this point. This mainly effects Faculty of Health programs as well as graduate student thesis defences already scheduled for the week of January 4th.
“This change in the starting day for most classes will give faculty, instructors and staff the opportunity to spend their working time the week of January 4th on preparation for the winter term. The delay also gives students time to recharge and those who went home for their Christmas break the chance to isolate for an additional week to help limit any potential COVID-19 cases,” read the statement on the McMaster website.
You can read the full statement by the university’s Provost Susan Tighe on the McMaster website.