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June 18, 2020: What Will Fall 2020 Look Like?

Communication from ESU Fall Planning Group

June 18, 2020

Dear Hornet Nation,

As we move ever closer to returning to campus for the fall 2020 semester, we want to share with you decisions we have made about the academic calendar, class delivery and student housing. Please understand that, while these are decisions we have made now, we continue to work on the details.

We continue to follow the guiding principles for fall 2020 that President Garrett shared earlier this month, knowing that we all must work together for the common good to achieve our goals.

Academic Calendar

The Kansas Board of Regents recently approved the following changes to the fall 2020 semester.

Fall classes begin as planned on Monday, Aug. 17. We will move the two days of Fall Break to the beginning of Thanksgiving week, giving a full week off. All face-to-face classes will end on Friday, Nov. 20, and the residence halls will close Sunday, Nov. 22. After Thanksgiving, there will be one week of remote classes followed by one week of final exams delivered remotely. This approach is in alignment with other institutions in the Kansas Board of Regents system.

For ease of planning, please note these specific dates:

  • Aug. 17 — first day of fall classes
  • Nov. 20 — last day of on-campus classes
  • Nov. 22 — residence halls close for winter break
  • Nov. 23-27 — no classes for Thanksgiving break
  • Nov. 30 – Dec. 4 — last week of class instruction, delivered remotely
  • Dec. 7-11 — Finals Week, delivered remotely

Class Delivery

Since late April, our goal has been to deliver face-to-face class instruction in the fall. We know, however, that COVID-19 could change our plans.

All Emporia State faculty are working on their fall classes to provide flexibility for change and for effective use of technology. As much as possible, classes will be face-to-face. Many classes may take on a hybrid, or blended, approach, which would include a combination of face-to-face and online delivery. Choice of course delivery mode will be based on the option that helps to best mitigate the spread of COVID-19 while also achieving the class learning objectives.

Living On Campus

Residential Life staff will communicate directly with students who have submitted housing contracts. To keep residents and our campus community as safe as possible, these are measures that we know will be taken in the residence halls — the Towers Complex, Schallenkamp Hall and the newly renovated Abigail Morse Hall:

  • ESU guidance applies. Residential Life will follow all campus guidelines for health + safety, including wearing face masks in common areas.
  • Increased cleaning and disinfection. Residential Life staff will complete more frequent and more focused measures, using CDC-approved cleaning agents, in all common areas (bathrooms, lounges, kitchens, laundry rooms, etc.). This will occur seven days a week between 7 a.m. and 6:30 p.m.
  • Reduced occupancy. Residents will be assigned to floors with the goal of 4-5 residents per bathroom fixture. To accomplish this, we will close rooms, offer more private rooms, and lower occupancy in our four-person suites to a maximum of two residents per suite.
  • Minimized group gatherings and common area use. Residential Life staff will conduct more of our academic support via virtual methods (Zoom, Facetime, text messaging, e-mail, and similar). Common areas will include signage that clearly indicates the maximum occupancy for the spaces to achieve physical distancing. Furniture in common areas also will be reduced and arranged to facilitate physical distancing.

We will continue to communicate new updates and information to your ESU email and will post information online at


ESU Fall Planning Group