NCCU requires KN95, ‘medical’ masks for spring semester

Coronavirus

Statue of NCCU founder James E. Shepard. James E. Shepard was also a pharmacist, civil servant and educator. He served as the first president of NCCU for nearly 40 years. (Photo: RDUpedia via Wikimedia Commons)

RALEIGH, N.C. (WNCN) – North Carolina Central University will no longer allow cloth face masks to be worn on campus. A KN95 will now be required in the classroom.

Students may face administrative action, including restriction of access to or use of university facilities, removal from university housing, or disenrollment if they don’t comply with community standards outlined by the University and other requirements included in the Student Code of Conduct, the university said.

Students are asked to abide by the following community standards:

  • Practice good hand hygiene. 
  • Keep distance between yourself and others as feasible. 
  • Wear a face covering where mandated. 
  • Report cases, symptoms and testing. 
  • Upload proof of vaccination or participate in weekly surveillance testing. 
  • Participate in contact tracing fully and honestly. 
  • Comply with quarantine/isolation requirements. 
  • Respect the privacy and confidentiality of faculty, staff and students who test positive for COVID-19 or are otherwise affected by the virus.

The new rules apply to everyone, regardless of vaccination status.

 Failure to comply with the community standards, as well as those outlined in the NCCU Student Code of Conduct, could result in disciplinary action.

The university told CBS 17 that all students will be provided KN95 masks and disposable medical masks. The school said certain high-risk employees are enrolled in a program to wear tight-fitting N95 respirators.

Masks will come at no cost to faculty or students.

For the weeks of January 5-7 and January 10-14, commuter students can pick up a mask at the A.E. Student Union lobby and the New Student Center lobby.

NCCU told CBS 17 they have purchased enough supply for everyone and do not anticipate running out at this point. It said it would remain mindful of any supply chain issues.

CBS 17 asked the university if it believed a KN95 would reduce cases of COVID-19 at the school.

The university did not directly answer the question but said the health and well-being of their community was a top priority. Additionally, it said its protocols are instrumental in keeping positivity rates at the school low and want the positivity rate at 1-percent by the end of last semester.

“NCCU’s COVID-19 Management Team is reviewing data regarding COVID-19 on a daily basis and working in partnership with local and state health officials and the University of North Carolina System,” the university said in an email. “The university may adjust operations if needed and as required and will ensure updates are provided in a timely manner.”

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