UNM Policy on Vaccination

UNM COVID-19 Updates for UNM Main & Branch Campus Instructors, Fall 2022.

UNM Academic Affairs encourages instructors to include in their syllabi the following syllabus language on COVID-19 safety and requirements:

Fall 2022 Syllabus Language on COVID-19

COVID-19 Health and Awareness. UNM is a mask friendly, but not a mask required, community. To be registered or employed at UNM, Students, faculty, and staff must all meet UNM's Administrative Mandate on Required COVID-19 vaccination. If you are experiencing COVID-19 symptoms, please do not come to class. If you have a positive COVID-19 test, please stay home for five days and isolate yourself from others, per the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) guidelines. If you do need to stay home, please communicate with me at [    ]; I can work with you to provide alternatives for course participation and completion. UNM faculty and staff know that these are challenging times. Please let us know that you need support so that we can connect you to the right resources and please be aware that UNM will publish information on websites and email about any changes to our public health status and community response.

Support:         

Student Health and Counseling (SHAC) at (505) 277-3136. If you are having active respiratory symptoms (e.g., fever, cough, sore throat, etc.) AND need testing for COVID-19; OR If you recently tested positive and may need oral treatment, call SHAC. 

LoboRESPECT Advocacy Center (505) 277-2911 can offer help with contacting faculty and managing challenges that impact your UNM experience.


Additional Information on Semester Planning for Instructors:

  1. Recognize that disciplinary action on a student's non-compliance with the vaccination mandate or the masking requirement is the responsibility of Dean of Students and Academic Affairs. If a student refuses to comply with the masking requirement and insists on remaining in class, an instructor may dismiss class to protect students and inform the Dean of Students of the student conduct violation.
  2. Plan in advance for student attendance disruption, due to a rise in prevalence of the Omicron variant in New Mexico, particularly in January and February. Build deadline and assignment buffers into the syllabus. These might include, for example, make-up exams; the option to take exams or quizzes twice; second due dates for assignments; a no-consequence extension that a student can opt to use once in the semester; a quiz/lab/paper policy in which x of a total y assignments will count for the final grade; alternative assignments or content posted on the learning management system to address missed content in scheduled class periods. Instructors may also want to support students actively in developing study groups or buddies so that they can work with their peers to catch up on missed classes.
  3. Protect students and yourself from misplaced grade expectations by providing clarity and consistency around assignment and grade expectations in the syllabus and in the learning management system (UNMLearn or Canvas) and by providing a mid-term grade and early feedback.
  4. Work with your Chairs and colleagues to anticipate and address instructor absence from a face-to-face class due to illness.  Identify a colleague who can cover a class, if it becomes necessary, or identify alternative assignments and instruction that can be provided to students during a period of instructor illness.  Instructors should inform students repeatedly how they will communicate with them about the class, assignments, grades, attendance, and class meetings.  An instructor who must stay home due to illness (e.g. tests positive for COVID-19) may, if they feel well enough to teach, shift a face-to-face class to use remote instructional tools (e.g using Zoom, Canvas, email, etc.) for up to, but not more than, two weeks, notifying their department chair. During this limited-period temporary remote instruction, students may not be penalized for failure to attend remotely. The department chair must be notified of any shift to remote instruction.  If other pandemic driven disruptions block an instructor’s ability to work in their assigned instructional modality, they should consult with their department chair; the chair can use their professional discretion to develop temporary modifications (no more than two weeks), and in the case of faculty instructors advise on the availability of leave options.
  1. Extend flexibility, where possible, around academic deadlines and attendance to students who are sick, and don't require notes from medical providers, who are overloaded.Provide information about student support resources. (For UNM's Albuquerque Main campus, see http://goweb.unm.edu/studentguide/ and https://students.unm.edu for quick links, including mental health resourcesstudent resource centerspeer tutoring, and crisis support and offer affirming referrals to services). 
  2. Understand that there is no expectation that instructors offer a "hiflex" course (simultaneously in-person and streamed remotely). Hiflex may be challenging for both the instructor and student. Qualified students may request accommodations for the semester by working with the Accessibility Resource Center. Possible accommodations may include attending class remotely but only in cases in which the instructor agrees that remote attendance will not lessen the learning experience and only when the student has a documented need for an accessibility accommodation. Instructors may choose on an individual basis to stream a few classes on a temporary basis for students who request that flexibility when they are sick or are encountering other COVID-19-related constraints.
  3. Schedule remote class meetings using the Learn-Zoom integration in combination with authentication.




If a student informs you that they have tested positive for COVID-19:

  1. Inform the student that the university requires self-reporting of a positive diagnosis.
  2. Point the student to the information in the student section of this site.
  3. Send a follow-up e-mail to the student, copying the COVID-19 Coordinator, Carla Domenici at covidcoordinator@unm.edu, adapting the following language:

cc: covidcoordinator@unm.edu

I want to follow up on our conversation by providing you with some information. UNM requires individuals who test positive for COVID-19 to report their status at this portal. Reporting your status will allow university personnel to help prevent transmission to others.

Remember that, "Everyone who has presumed or confirmed COVID-19 should stay home and isolate from other people for at least 5 full days (day 0 is the first day of symptoms or the date of the day of the positive viral test for asymptomatic persons). They should wear a mask when around others at home and in public for an additional 5 days" (Centers for Disease Control). For more information, please consult student section of bringbackthepack.unm.edu.

Let's stay in regular communication so that we can make sure that you don't fall behind in class while you isolate and that you have access to information about course materials and assignments.
I am copying UNM's COVID-19 coordinator, Ms. Carla Domenici, who may contact you to request information so that a medical team can assess risk of transmission to other students and to faculy and staff.
[Main campus only: Student Health and Counseling (SHAC) is available to provide health care to students who are ill, call (505) 277-3136.  Lobo RESPECT Advocacy Center (tel:(505) 277-2911) can assist with support contacting professors and accessing services.]
Thank you for talking with me. Best wishes for a speedy recovery.
  1. The Covid Coordinator, Carla Domenici, will contact you if there are concerns of transmission to you and your class and will provide information about the right measures to take.

COVID-19 COORDINATOR ACTIONS

Once the Covid Coordinator receives report of a COVID-19 positive student, they will work with the Department Administrator to determine if spaces need to be Covid-19 Cleaned.

The Covid Coordinator will also work with the Department to determine if anyone in class with the Covid-19 Positive Student meets the following criteria as a close contact/exposure:

  • They were not wearing a mask;
  • They were less than 6 feet from the Covid-19 Positive Student;
  • They ate or drank with the Covid-19 Positive Student;
  • They spent more than 15 minutes (cumulative) with the Covid-19 Positive Student within a 24-hour period.

ATTENDING CLASS WITH A COVID-19 POSITIVE STUDENT DOES NOT CONSTITUTE AN EXPOSURE. 

Through the above data gathering efforts, guidance will be provided on whether faculty, staff, or students were exposed and advice on follow-up, if needed, provided.

The Covid Coordinator will confer with the UNM COVID-19 Rapid Response Team to determine if an in-person (aka live) class needs to be converted to remote learning and whether class members need to quarantine or test. She will share the determination with Office of the Provost and the appropriate College Dean. The Department should seek confirmation from the respective College Dean or Associate Dean before canceling classes or changing classes to remote learning and not exceed two weeks of remote learning for a face-to-face class.

Classroom Information:

How does UNM address student self-reporting of positive COVID-19 diagnosis and concerns about student exposure and transmission (see also student section):

UNM's COVID-19 Rapid Response Team (RRT), comprised of medical and emergency response professionals, operates and in coordination with the New Mexico Department of Health and its contact tracing team. RRT evaluates a range of COVID-19 transmission and positive data, addresses exposure events from positive students and manages follow-up around communication, medical care, testing, and isolation, working with UNM's Covid Coordinator.

Students who are identified as having possibly been exposed either on campus or in a residence hall due to proximity to an individual confirmed to be COVID positive may be advised to obtain testing via email notification.  Please watch for any emails from the UNM Rapid Response Team (RRT) for detailed information. 

All positive cases in the state are reported to the New Mexico Department of Health, which provides follow-up contact tracing. Faculty are not responsible for identifying potential contacts of students who report having tested positive for COVID-19.