Many Massachusetts Colleges Uncertain About Robust COVID-19 Testing on Campus

Many Massachusetts colleges are uncertain they will be able to put robust COVID-19 testing mechanisms in place on their campuses if and when they reopen for fall 2020, reported The Boston Globe.23311 1

An advisory group of a dozen Massachusetts college presidents, set up by Gov. Charlie Baker, conducted a survey of nearly 90 campus leaders to ask them about their state of COVID-19 preparedness and other issues to do with a possible fall reopening.

Slightly less than 60% of state institution leaders said they were very or somewhat confident that they could do robust testing of everybody returning to campus. And fewer than three-quarters of leaders felt strongly that they could do the contact tracing to curb the spread of the virus, according to the survey.

Most college leaders said they are highly confident they can reduce classroom sizes and appropriately sanitize common spaces to prevent the spread of the virus.

The state advisory group said most higher education institution leaders will be prepared to announce their plans for the fall by July 1.

“You’re going to see a lot of creativity and variation,” said Laurie Leshin, president of Worcester Polytechnic Institute, who is the head of Baker’s reopening advisory board for higher education. “It is likely to be a mix of in-person and remote as we repopulate.”