Eastern releases reopening guidebook

Adam Tumino, Editor-in-Chief

Eastern released its reopening guidebook Friday in an email to all Eastern students and employees. The 17-page PDF provides more details and explanations of guidelines for dealing with COVID-19 that have been discussed in the past few weeks and months.

There is information on how the dining halls will be modified to accommodate social distancing practices, such as controlling traffic flow to maintain distances of six feet and limiting seating in the dining areas.

The mask policy is also explained in more detail. Masks must cover the mouth and nose and students who are not wearing masks or not wearing them properly will not be allowed in academic or department office spaces.

The exceptions to the mask requirement remain the same. Masks are not required for students while in their individual residence hall rooms, employees in private offices or properly spaced shared offices and while using socially distanced cardio machines in the SRC or the outdoor jogging trails.

Student-athletes will not need to wear masks while in practice. Masks will also not be required on evening after 5 p.m. or on weekends as long as social distancing is being maintained.

Eastern’s testing and contact tracing protocols are discussed as well. Testing will be available to all students during move-in week and the first week of classes. The Sarah Bush Lincoln Medical System has partnered with Eastern to provide testing on campus throughout the semester for students who are showing symptoms of COVID-19.

When a student tests positive, they will be contacted by a trained contact tracer who will help the student identify anyone who they may have exposed to the virus.

Cleaning and sanitation practices will be altered to mitigate the spread of the virus on campus. High-traffic areas will be sanitized frequently and sanitation and cleaning supplies will be available across campus and in classrooms.

More information can be found in the guidebook and on Eastern’s COVID-19 website, eiu.edu/covid.


Adam Tumino can be reached at 581-2812 or [email protected]