BOULDER, Colo. (CBS4) – The University of Colorado in Boulder is moving to remote learning for the next two weeks after a spike in COVID-19 cases. It also lead them to issue a series of public health mandates.
As of Friday, the school had 251 students living in their designated isolation rooms on campus, nearly 70% of the total space available, leading them to clear healthy students out of a third hall in order to create more space.
Currently a student living on campus who tests positive for COVID-19 is required to stay in isolation for two weeks.
“I feel like they had a plan in place, and as apparent I felt comfortable, but the execution, not even close,” one mother, who asked to remain anonymous, told CBS4.
Her daughter, a freshmen, found out she had COVID-19 after a random test on campus. She says the results came in an email with a phone number to call, with very little guidance on what do, where to go and what to expect.
“My daughter was the one who said, ‘OK, what do I do next?’ And she was the one making the calls, and we were making phone calls after that when she hadn’t heard from her care manager.”
It took three days before she would hear from her designated contact, during which time the family took the appropriate steps to make sure she was able to get into her new room, get food and start to recover.
Once they were able to get her into an isolation dorm, mom says her concerns as a parent only grew.
“It’s sort of a free for all,” she said.
Specifically, the lack of supervision of an entire residence hall full of COVID-19 positive teenagers.
“Can you get out and come back in without anyone noticing? Absolutely. I just thought there would be more supervision and making sure because if these kids are in isolation and they are leaving to go off and do other things, how are they not spreading COVID? The risk is certainly there.”
CU officials answered questions about their response virtually on Monday, and were asked specifically about monitoring students in isolation dorms.
“We do have staff, including resident advisors as well as professional staff and our community resource officers that are in those facilities in order to ensure that students who are under isolation orders are remaining in isolation.”
A CU spokesperson says they have had staff monitoring the isolation halls since students began moving in, but did not say if that was 24 hours a day or periodically checking in.
He says that any reports of students coming and going or otherwise violating isolation protocols are referred to the student conduct office and could result in a 10-day suspension pending adjudication.
As of Monday 14 students were currently on suspension.