Franklin College to resume in-person classes after student-athlete infection rate deemed ‘manageable’

Coronavirus

FRANKLIN, Ind. — Franklin College announced Thursday that students will return to in-person classes beginning October 12. 

For the past week, the school turned to virtual-only classes due to what appeared to be an increase in positive COVID-19 cases within the college’s student-athlete population. 

The college says the week-long pause of in-person classes and activities allowed for the expansion of surveillance testing of student-athletes and for data to be submitted to medical professionals for analysis and recommendations. 

Franklin College President Kerry Prather said in a release that after an increase of testing, medical professionals deemed the infection rate of student-athletes to be manageable.

“Of the surveillance testing done between Saturday of last week and Monday morning of this week, we have 151 results, double the sample size of the previous week,” said Prather. “The infection rate for this most recent testing of student-athletes is eight percent, deemed by our medical professionals as fully manageable in an environment that includes in-person instruction and activities within our mitigation guidelines. Therefore, we will return to traditional instruction and co-curricular activities next week.”

Prather added that additional steps will be taken out of an abundance of caution. Those steps include limitations on athletic activity, continued expanded testing of student-athletes beyond NCAA requirements and extension of testing into the non-athlete student population.

“While our greatest challenge is certainly COVID, it is followed closely by the human tendency toward complacency.  We all must be reminded that the safety protocols which guided our return to campus in August remain just as important today.  They will be just as important for the foreseeable future,” said Prather in an email to the campus community.

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