State universities were told to transition to remote learning and send students home for two weeks.

Florida’s State University System has directed its universities to shift to remote instruction and encourage students to stay home for two weeks in order to reduce the chance of outbreaks of the new coronavirus on campuses.


"As we have continued to monitor the spread of the COVID-19 virus it has become clear that to protect the students and the residents of our state, proactive rather than reactive guidance to universities is necessary," the system said in a news release Wednesday afternoon. "To be clear, campuses will remain open, and operations will continue, although some adjustments may be made as determined by each university."


The system ordered its universities to transition to remote instruction as soon as possible.


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Universities with students who are currently on spring break or going on break soon are telling students not to return to campus for at least two weeks, and implementing remote instruction immediately. Those schools include Florida Agricultural and Mechanical University, Florida Atlantic University, Florida State University, New College of Florida, the University of North Florida, the University of Central Florida, the University of South Florida, and the University of West Florida.


Schools with students who have returned from spring break were told to ask students to return home and continue studies remotely. Those schools include Florida Polytechnic University, Florida Gulf Coast University, Florida International University and the University of Florida.


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Each university will provide detailed information to their students, faculty and staff at the earliest possible time, the release said.


All universities will continue to provide essential services, such as dining, counseling, health services, library services, etc., potentially on a limited basis or remotely.


While students are encouraged to remain off-campus, each university will work with students who must remain on campus.


This story originally published to theledger.com, and was shared to other Florida newspapers in the new Gannett Media network.