Spring 2021 Phased Opening

This page was last updated on Friday, February 19, 2021 at 3:50 p.m.

Similar to the fall, Sarah Lawrence will follow a measured and phased reopening of the campus as the spring semester begins. The phases will move from more restrictive to less over the course of the semester and will be tied to the College’s surveillance testing program, community health, and the spread of COVID-19 in our region. Despite changes in phases throughout the spring term, students at no time will have access to residence halls in which they do not live (and cannot enter living quarters that aren’t their own, even if in the same residence hall), no outside guests will be allowed on campus, and face masks will be required at all times on campus unless a student is in their living space and either alone or with only those they live with (or eating). Social distancing will also be required all semester, with students who live together being able to eat together in groups of five or fewer and attending events together without social distancing.

As noted below, the College intends for in-person student-faculty meetings (conference meetings, for example) to begin on Monday, March 1 and in-person classes (convening of a full class) are anticipated to begin Monday, March 8. The below phases have been updated following the increase in COVID cases experienced in the first days of the semester. With all of the below phases, amendments or expansions may be implemented to reflect a change in the state of the virus in the College’s area and/or in the health of the SLC community.

Phase I

This is the College’s most restrictive phase. Following a pause in the College's phased opening at the start of the semester, Phase I will resume on Monday, February 22.

  • All instruction will be online
  • Practice spaces, rehearsal/art studios, and labs, including in Heimbold, will reopen for individual use
  • Residential student employees who have in-person roles will return to their positions (please consult your supervisor if you have questions)
    • Commuter students must receive a negative COVID test result prior to returning to an in-person position. This test can be taken on campus on 2/24 or away from campus and uploaded to the Health & Wellness patient portal. Students should consult with their supervisor to develop an appropriate schedule
  • Students may move about campus individually and in their living pods
  • The library will resume curbside pick-up
  • The Athletics department will begin gradually allowing student athletes to work out individually in the Campbell Sports Center (teams/players will be notified by the Athletic department regarding specific plans)
  • The BWCC Living Room will open for physically distanced study access (no dining and masks are required at all times)
  • Indoor dining will remain suspended, as it is impossible to eat and wear a mask at the same time
  • In-person events remain suspended and residential students are strongly discouraged from leaving campus

In addition to the above, on Monday, March 1:

  • The library will open for in-person study and use (social distancing and masks will be required and building capacity will be monitored)
  • In-person one-on-one conference meetings with faculty may begin
  • With warmer weather on the horizon, outdoor dining within living pods (in groups no larger than five) may begin

Phase II

The College anticipates beginning Phase II on Monday, March 8, pending our community's health. If portions of Phase II are revised to reflect a change in our community's health, this page will be updated and the community will be notified via email. 

  • In-person classes, with appropriate physical distancing, may convene
  • College-sponsored in-person events (with capacity limits) may begin
  • Student groups may meet in person following all of the protocols and capacity limits for socially distanced events
  • Bates dining hall will open and indoor/outdoor dining will be available at Bates and BWCC (students will continue to eat with their living pods)
  • The Campbell Sports Center will open for all students on a reservation system, as it was during the fall semester (to make a reservation, please visit fitness.slc.edu)
  • Athletic teams may begin working out as a group with coaches according to each team’s schedule
  • Resident students are asked to limit their travel away from campus and avoid non-essential travel
  • All semester, no outside guests will be permitted on campus and students will only have access to their own residence

As always, our community health will drive decisions around phases, and as such these tentative dates are subject to change.

Beyond Phase II

The College will continue to evaluate its operational phases throughout the semester and, depending on our community's health, will make amendments and/or expansions as necessary. For example, the College will continue to examine if campus shuttles may operate and if in-person event capacities may be expanded as weather improves and outdoor spaces are more readily available. Decisions will continue to be made based on our community’s health and in consultation with the Westchester County Department of Health - the College will never change phases without alerting the community beforehand.