Health & Safety Updates: COVID-19

Health & Safety

For the health and safety of our faculty, students, staff and visitors, the following is required:

As COVID-19 cases continue a strong downward trend in Kent County, and as our numbers at Calvin Seminary continue to remain low (no current cases in our community, only 20 cases overall since the start of the Fall 2021 semester), we are changing our COVID response protocols for the Seminary, effective today. These changes are as follows: Masks are optional when in public or open spaces around Calvin Seminary. Masks are recommended for classrooms, the chapel, and common spaces in student housing. Faculty and staff may choose to require masks in their offices or classrooms. We support the decisions of those who choose to do so. We support any student, staff, or faculty who choose to wear masks. For those who would like masks, including KN-95 masks, they are available in the President’s Office and the Student Life Office. Please note that we continue to encourage hand washing, social distancing, and other good health practices. We also ask that if you feel unwell, please stay home. If you have any symptoms, please fill out our COVID reporting form.
Social Distancing
Social distancing, also called “physical distancing,” means keeping a safe space between yourself and other people who are not from your household. CDC: What is social distancing? The following are protocols for social/physical distancing: Everyone should stay 6 feet apart (at least two arm lengths) at all times and in every space in the building (student center, classrooms, offices, bathrooms, various patios and the courtyard). To facilitate social distancing: -Signage will be placed in all public spaces, classrooms, and main entrances. -Seats in the student center and in the classrooms will be marked to guide socially distanced sitting. -Avoid social gathering in groups in the Seminary building. Groups of 10 or more indoors are not allowed.
CDC: What is Social Distancing?
Washing hands can keep you healthy and prevent the spread of respiratory and other infections from one person to the next. Germs can spread from other people or surfaces when you touch your mouth, nose, and eyes; when you sneeze or cough into your hands; or when you touch and prepare food. CDC recommends washing hands with soap and warm water for at least 20 seconds. (CDC: Handwashing.) As part of the CTS commitment to safe practices, all students, staff and faculty will be asked to commit to regular handwashing. CDC recommends the following key times to wash and sanitize hands: o before, during, and after preparing food o before eating food o after using the restroom o after blowing nose, sneezing or coughing
CDC: Handwashing
Daily Health Monitoring
A daily temperature check accompanied by monitoring of other symptoms helps to mitigate the spread of COVID-19. To this end: ▪ Faculty, staff, and residential students will be provided with a thermometer and asked to record their body temperature daily. ▪ If your body temperature is 100.4 Farenheit/ 38 degrees Celcius and above, and/or you’re experiencing COVID-19 symptoms, you should not enter the Seminary building, you should remain at home and contact your healthcare provider. ▪ In addition to staying away from the seminary building and contacting healthcare providers, individuals should complete the COVID-19 Symptoms and Illness Reporting Form by clicking on the link above. (See also Section “g” on Isolation & Quarantine below).
Reporting Form
Contact Tracing
The Kent County Department of Health describes contact tracing as a public health tool that is used to help in “...identifying others that may have had recent close contact with a person confirmed to have the virus and giving those close contacts guidance on how to stay safe and healthy. This includes close contacts self-quarantining to prevent further spread of the virus.” (Kent County, Contact Tracing in the Workplace). Calvin Seminary will work with the Kent County Health Department for contact tracing in the Seminary community.
Kent County: Contact Tracing in the Workplace
Preparation for Isolation and/or Quarantine
Isolation and quarantine help protect the community by preventing exposure to those who have or may have contracted COVID-19. Isolation means separation of those who are infected from those who are not sick. Quarantine means separation and restriction of movement of people who were exposed to COVID-19 to monitor their symptoms and see if they become sick. Quarantine helps prevent the spread of COVID (or any disease) which might occur before a person knows they are sick or if they are infected without being symptomatic. (CDC: Quarantine and Isolation). In the event that you are infected with COVID-19, the following ISOLATION protocols will be followed: ▪ First and foremost, contact your primary care physician or visit the emergency room. ▪ For students in seminary housing who are required to isolate, the seminary will provide one of the four apartments which have been designated for this purpose. Students who live off campus should isolate at home. ▪ Staff and faculty will be required to make their own arrangements for isolation. ▪ Students, faculty and staff will be asked to fill out the COVID-19 Symptoms and Illness Reporting Form to enable contact tracing. ▪ A report from a medical provider indicating that the individual is free of Covid-19 will be required in order to return to the seminary building or regular seminary housing. Students will submit the information to the Dean of Students. Faculty and Staff will submit the information to the Director of Human Resources.
CDC: Quarantine if You Might Be Sick
Student COVID-19 Guide
Find information about travel and arrival procedures, testing and more.
Student COVID-19 Guide

Academics & Classrooms

Classes will meet in person for residential students for the fall semester. Please see the mask and social distancing guidelines for more information.



Seminary Building
▪ Signage is on all building entry doors and in public spaces with reminders of safety protocols including mandatory mask wearing, washing hands, social distancing, disinfecting surfaces, etc. ▪ Signs on touchable surfaces are laminated for easy disinfecting. ▪ Disinfecting/sanitizing products including spray bottles, sanitizing wipes, paper towels, and hand sanitizers will be available in all public areas of the seminary building (labeled Sanitation Stations) for use throughout the day. Disinfecting products will also be provided to faculty and staff for their offices. ▪ The HVAC system has been upgraded in an effort to keep air circulating 24/7, bringing in as much outside air as possible. ▪ All doors will be locked at all times. The Seminary building can be accessed using the seminary ID card. Note: building hours are as follows (subject to change as needed): o M-F 7:00am-5:30pm card only; 5:30pm-midnight with card and pin number o S: 6:45am-10:00pm with card and pin number o Sunday: the building is closed
Apartments / Student Housing
▪ All apartments will be cleaned, painted, and repaired before new students can occupy them. ▪ Four apartments will be available for students who are infected with COVID-19 in order to isolate or quarantine. ▪ Students will be required to adhere to all COVID protocols when using common spaces (e.g. laundry rooms, play areas).

Employee Information

Self-Monitoring for Employees
Employees are required to record their temperature every day. If you record a temperature of 100.4o Fahrenheit/38o Celsius, with accompanying COVID related symptoms, you should remain at home and contact your medical provider. Thermometers have been provided in the COVID Safety packets to facilitate self-monitoring. Instructions for thermometer use were distributed previously via email and can be found on the CDC website.
COVID-19 Symptoms and Illness Reporting Form.
Follow All Health & Safety Guidelines
Employees will continue to be sent governmental regulations to follow via CTS communication.
Employees will self-monitor and should not enter the building if symptoms are experienced. If a faculty or staff member is not able to come to their office and is also not able to work from home because of their symptoms or any other CARES Act eligible reasons (from March 2020 employee email or contact HR Manager for details), they should contact their supervisor and the HR manager. The HR manager will share information about next steps for isolation or quarantine and the employee’s supervisor and the HR manager will discuss work responsibilities and sick leave arrangements with the employee. If a faculty or staff member’s ability to function in their job changes as a result of COVID-19, it is very important to communicate the necessary information to faculty, staff and students regarding alternate plans and coverage so that work and learning can continue. This will be done in coordination with the employee, supervisor, Academic Office, and the HR Manager. All staff members should update their procedure manuals and cross-train others for key tasks so that back-up systems are in place in the event that an employee is not able to work in the seminary building and/or work remotely for a period of time..
COVID Guidance for Vaccinated People
All seminary-related travel will be reviewed on a case-by-case basis by the Academic Office or the employee’s supervisor. Any faculty or staff member who plans to travel (domestic or international) for seminary-related reasons should complete the travel plan form. Prior approval is required in order to receive reimbursement of costs of travel.
Travel Plan Form
As members of the Calvin Seminary community, we are called to love and care for our neighbors. This extends to caring for their health and for our own so that we can ensure a safe and healthy community for everyone. All employees will be asked to commit to keeping the community safe by signing the “Loving Our Neighbor - A Safe and Healthy Return” Covenant.

Visitor Information

Visitor Policy
Visitors must comply with the current masking and health guidelines above and must be accompanied by seminary personnel.
Building Access for Seminary Guests and General Deliveries
Seminary guests and office supply deliveries should enter the building through Door J (unless prior arrangements have been made). Call or 616.957.6044 for entry to the building.
Building Access for Facility Deliveries
Other vendors and deliveries for facilities will access the building through Door A by calling 616.957.7107


CARES Act – Emergency Financial Aid Grants to Students Required Report (6/10/2020)

On March 27, 2020, the President of the United States signed the CARES Act (H.R. 748), which provides emergency relief funds to organizations and individuals affected by the coronavirus pandemic. The Higher Education Emergency Relief Fund (HEERF), found in Section 18004 of the CARES Act, provides funding to institutions of higher education “to prevent, prepare for, and respond to coronavirus.” The following information is provided by Calvin Theological Seminary as required by the Department of Education (“ED”) in order to comply with the reporting requirements under the CARES Act.

Institution Name: Calvin Theological Seminary

Date of Report: June 10, 2020

Calvin Theological Seminary has signed and returned to the Department of Education the Certification and Agreement document under section 18004 of the CARES Act to provide Emergency Financial Aid Grants to students.

Total amount of funds Calvin Theological Seminary has received from the Department of Emergency Financial Aid Grants to students: $35,650

Total amount of Emergency Financial Aid Grants distributed to students under Section 18004 of the CARES Act as of the date of this report: $35,650

Estimated total number of students eligible to participate in programs under Section 484 in Title IV of the Higher Education Act of 1965: 81

Total number of students who have received an Emergency Financial Aid Grant: 23

Method(s) used by Calvin Theological Seminary to determine which students received Emergency Financial Aid Grants and how much they received:

Students eligible to participate in programs under Section 484 in Title IV of the Higher Education Act of 1965, as amended (HEA), were eligible to receive Emergency Financial Aid Grants. Students enrolled as of March 13, 2020 (not including guest, dual-enrolled, audit, hiatus), meeting satisfactory academic progress, were eligible to receive Emergency Financial Aid Grants. Emergency Financial Aid Grant amounts were determined based on the filed FAFSA’s Expected Family Contribution (EFC) prior to any COVID-19 related professional judgments and paying particular attention to students’ socio-economic circumstances.

Instructions, directions, or guidance provided by Calvin Theological Seminary to students concerning the Emergency Financial Aid Grants: Calvin Theological Seminary repeatedly sent a communication to all eligible students via their school issued email account. The email led them to a self-certification page where they entered the necessary information and certified their eligibility. Once the deadline for submission passed, these certifications were reviewed by the financial aid director. Students were awarded funds based on their self-certification and their spring enrollment. Funding levels were determined by the student’s enrollment at the time of disruption. Once all information was received and reviewed, checks were cut and mailed to the student’s preferred address.