Hot on the heels of announcements yesterday from Cornell and Ithaca College about reopening this fall, Tompkins Cortland Community College, or TC3, has also announced plans for the autumn. According to a press release from the college, the school is planning to begin the semester on August 31st, and will hold both in-person and online classes. The re-opening will include a plan to provide surveillance testing to both staff and students.

Student services at TC3 will be provided mostly in person as long as it is possible within COVID regulations. Residential services will also be different, with the number of students permitted in each suite reduced from four to two. Masks will also be required in all buildings and classrooms on campus, except for personal living spaces. The TC3 childcare centre will also be reopening on July 6th with reduced capacity.

In other Cornell News, the University plans to hold back-to-back Commencements next spring for the classes of 2021 and 2020. The Cornell Chronicle reports that President Martha Pollack announced yesterday that the 2021 class will still graduate over Memorial Day weekend depending on how the pandemic progresses and will include the December 2020 graduates. 

The class of 2020 ceremony will be the following weekend, which is the same weekend as the classes of 2015 and 2016 reunions. Other classes that have reunions scheduled for next year will take place on June 10-13th.

Ithaca City School District (ICSD) is opening its outdoor facilities for public use starting Monday, July 6, allowing for low-risk youth sports. Ithaca Times reports that groups of no more than 50 people can make a request online to use the facilities, and indoor facilities will stay closed.

Those that plan to use the playground and green spaces are asked to practice social distancing and wear a mask as individual use of these spaces does not require a district review. Reservations can be made at ithacacityschools.org/facilities.

Eight U.S. states were added to the list of places where visitors returning to New York from those states must quarantine for 14 days, to limit the spread of COVID-19. The list was created using public health statistics, and the original travel advisory required quarantining after visiting states with a significant community spread, where the positive test rate was greater than 10 per 100,000 residents.

The added states include California, Georgia, Iowa, Idaho, Louisiana, Mississippi, Nevada, and Tennessee. According to the Ithaca times, those states join Alabama, Arkansas, Arizona, Florida, North Carolina, South Carolina, Texas, and Utah.

Looking to the local COVID-19 caseload, In Tompkins County 165 of the 168 people infected with the virus in Tompkins have recovered as of yesterday, according to the county health department. There is one new case of the virus in Schuyler County. According to their health department, that person is thought to have been infected while traveling to a state with a high level of community spread. 14 out of 15 people infected with COVID-19 in Schuyler County have recovered.

The State University of New York, or SUNY, are suspending SAT and ACT testing requirements for the 2021-2022 academic year. According to New York Upstate, any high school senior who applied to a SUNY school for spring 2021, fall 2021 or spring 2022 semesters do not need to take the tests. Those who still plan to take the exams can still submit their scores.

Other higher education institutions, like Cornell and Syracuse Universities have waived SAT and ACT requirements for next fall because of COVID-19. Some schools, like Rochester Institute of Technology and University of Rochester have made standardized testing optional permanently.

Contributing writing by WRFI News Interns Phoebe Harms, Jon Donville, and Tessie Devlin.