Chancellor Thom Reilly’s Statement on Reopening in the Summer and Fall Semesters


Date:   May 4, 2020

To:       Council of Presidents, Chancellor’s Cabinet, Faculty Senate Chairs, Student Body Presidents

From:   Thom Reilly, Chancellor, NSHE

Cc:       Nevada Board of Regents

Re:       Statement on Reopening in the Summer and Fall Semesters

As we approach the end of the spring semester, on behalf of the Board of Regents, I want to thank our students, parents, faculty, and staff for their flexibility and perseverance as we have navigated this unprecedented pandemic.

The Nevada System of Higher Education has begun planning to resume in-person classes for the 2020 fall semester and more limited in person class offerings later this summer (after July 1).

NSHE and institution leaders are working closely with health and education experts on various reopening scenarios and phases, with the health and safety of our students, faculty, and staff being at the forefront of our concern. These scenarios include resuming some form of in-person instruction, campus housing, and athletics events.

Several options are on the table, including a hybrid approach with a mix of remote and in-person instruction. For instance, a science class might be designed to include online lectures and in-person lab sessions that follow established social distancing measures. Further safety measures could include reducing class sizes, using masks, and increased testing availability.

Athletics remain an integral part of our institutions’ esprit de corps and we are working closely with the Mountain West Conference on guidance. We are also awaiting further guidance from the NCAA regarding the 2020-21 season.

NSHE institutions are evaluating risk mitigating options for residential housing and dining which reflect appropriate health and safety precautions.

NSHE will continue to coordinate with the Office of the Governor and continue to follow recommendations of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, and state and county health and safety directives.  We will communicate as soon as possible more details about the developing plans for late summer and fall 2020 Semesters.