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Stanford eases COVID-19 restrictions ahead of summer quarter

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Stanford is relaxing COVID-19 restrictions ahead of the start of summer quarter, eliminating the Campus Compact and reducing mandatory testing requirements, according to an email from Senior Associate Vice Provost and Dean of Students Mona Hicks and Executive Director of Vaden Health Services James Jacobs.

Undergraduates will be permitted to have up to two people help them move into their dorm for the first time since campus closed last year. The shift comes as many frosh arrive on campus for the first time since being admitted to Stanford over a year ago: Summer quarter is the first quarter that frosh and sophomore students without special circumstances have been allowed to live on campus this school year.

After moving in, there will be a mandatory six-day period of restricted activity starting June 20 through June 26. Students will only be allowed to leave their residence for “COVID testing, medical care, laundry and trash, solo outdoor exercise, meal pick-up if you have a Stanford Dining meal plan or pick-up of grocery or prepared food,” Hicks and Jacobs wrote.

Students will be required to get tested twice weekly for the first four weeks of summer quarter, but will then be exempt if they are fully vaccinated and prevalence of the virus in the Bay Area remains low. Unvaccinated students will be required to get tested once per week, and the University will continue to require the daily health check for all students.

Stanford is likely to discontinue households and their essential visitor policy, signifying that students will have few restrictions on socialization. Under the current policy, students may interact with members of their households, up to eight people, unmasked and not socially distanced. Multiple households can register to have outdoor gatherings together, also unmasked in most circumstances.

While regulations on individual students might be easing, Stanford is now requiring student employees to complete a 10-minute online course “covering facts, hygiene practices, physical distancing, self-care, and workspace cleaning.” The course will be required for “all student employees” including “those who are doing field research, working on an on-campus research project, or doing individual research for a faculty member.”

The University also announced they will move away from Verily as their COVID-19 testing provider, switching to Color Health, a popular service used across California, notably in San Francisco’s public schools. Students must register for Color before the time of their first required test, and Verily will cease to provide tests on June 12.

This article has been corrected to reflect the accurate name of Color Health. The Daily regrets this error.

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Sam Catania ’24 is the Chief Technology Officer at The Daily. He also is the producer of the weekly video roundup and formerly served as a news beat reporter covering COVID-19 on Stanford's campus and the assessment team leader of The Daily's Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion (DEI) team. Sam is a Philadelphia native currently studying computer science and political science. You can follow him on Twitter @sbcatania. Contact him at scatania 'at' stanforddaily.com