Virginia Governor Bans All on-campus Teaching, a Week After Evangelical Liberty University Allowed Students Back From Spring Break and at Least 11 Contracted Coronavirus

Virginia’s governor on Monday ordered all higher education institutions to stop any in-person instruction amid the coronavirus pandemic, a move likely aimed at Liberty University that has reopened its campus amid the outbreak.

‘We are in a public health crisis, and we need everyone to take this seriously and act responsibly,’ said Northam, a Democrat. ‘Our message to Virginians is clear: stay home. We know this virus spreads primarily through human-to-human contact, and that’s why it’s so important that people follow this order and practice social distancing. I’m deeply grateful to everyone for their cooperation during this unprecedented and difficult time.’

Liberty University in Lynchburg led by President Jerry Falwell Jr has faced intense criticism over its decision to welcome 1,900 students back to campus last week after the end of their spring break.

The vast majority of classes have been moved online, but the university has said publicly that in-person instruction was necessary for a few select courses.

‘We are currently reviewing what the governor said but aren’t able to make a comment at this moment,’ said Liberty spokesman Scott Lamb.

Lamb said he couldn’t immediately say whether any in-person instruction was continuing Monday, but the university’s website specifically mentioned that flight training for aeronautics courses would ‘remain in the traditional face to face format.’

Falwell tweeted Sunday night that only one off-campus student who never left Lynchburg had tested positive for the virus – a response to a story in the New York Times that said 11 Liberty students were sick with symptoms that suggested COVID-19.

Of the 11 who have symptoms, three have been referred to hospitals in order to get tests while eight have been told to self-quarantine, according to the newspaper.

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Source: Daily Mail