SUNY schools report less than 1% COVID-19 rate as students test for Thanksgiving break


ROCHESTER, N.Y. (WROC) — Tuesday was the last official day for students attending State University of New York or SUNY schools to take their COVID-19 test in order to go home for Thanksgiving break. 

The mandatory test out policy was put in place to help keep students from returning home with the coronavirus. 

The chancellor for SUNY schools says across SUNY’s 64 colleges and universities, about 152,000 people have been tested so far, and leaders say the positivity rate is 0.63%. 

“It’s been a herculean task, there’s a lot of students, there’s a lot of moving pieces operationally but students have done well, faculty and staff have done well, and the teams that administrated the test have done a phenomenal job for the last couple of weeks,” said Dr. Jim Malatras, Chancellor for SUNY.

Students are doing self-administered saliva tests, which are then processed by SUNY’s medical University.

The Monroe Campus has completed over 3,300 tests to date with 11 positives. Brockport campus over 10,000 tests with 53 positives, and at the Geneseo campus close to 9,000 tests, with 42 positives.

All are less than 1 percent, which the chancellor contributes to student and staff compliance.

“So we’ve really been able to build the capacity and it’s easy to administer tests,” said Dr. Malatras. “The virus isn’t done with us, it constantly changes and you have to adapt and change with it.”

Students will be doing remote learning when they return from the break and will go back to in-person learning in the spring semester, if everything goes according to plan. 

The Spring semester for SUNY school is going to start in February rather than January. Leaders have also canceled the spring break. 

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