Johns Hopkins University in Baltimore has canceled in-person undergraduate classes until Friday because of what it called a cluster of COVID-19 cases.
The cancellation applies to undergraduate in-person classes and activities on the Homewood campus, according to a letter sent to the campus community. The school said some 30 undergraduates out of its 6,000 student population tested positive during screening Tuesday and Wednesday.
Johns Hopkins said the cluster can likely be attributed to “off-campus social gatherings over the weekend.”
“We are taking a quick and proactive approach to this moment, although our numbers are small relative to our total population, out of an abundance of caution and to provide the opportunity to reinforce our communications with undergraduates about COVID safety precautions,” the university said in a statement.
The university said several of the students who tested positive live in Charles Commons and that many are athletes. Students who tested positive and live in residence halls were transferred to “isolation housing,” and others are isolating off campus.
During the temporary pause in campus classes and activities, Johns Hopkins will begin contact tracing, test as many undergraduates as possible and ask all students living in Charles Commons, as well as all athletes, to quarantine.
In the letter, university leadership urged all students to wear masks, socially distance and avoid large gatherings.
“Our peers who operated successfully in-person in the fall have not seen cases of transmission in classrooms, and we have had the same experience in our research labs, but we believe this action is necessary to ensure that we can carry out the rest of the semester safely,” the letter said.
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