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During the holiday season the omicron variant spread across the country, leading higher education in California and abroad to reevaluate in-person learning. On Dec. 29 Biola announced that the spring semester would start remotely.
ARRIVING ON CAMPUS
Biola’s plan to start the semester online only accounts for the first week, with in-person classes starting after Martin Luther King Jr. Day. Students must provide a negative coronavirus test within 72 hours of returning to campus.
All residential students arriving on campus can return between Jan. 6 and Jan. 18. Biola recommended students receive testing outside of La Mirada. Card access to campus and all buildings are held until a negative test is shown. Additionally, students who contracted COVID-19 within 90 days of returning to campus were able to waive a negative test documentation from a physician.
On Jan. 7 Biola outlined its mask mandate along with disciplinary consequences for not wearing a mask on campus.
Following updated guidelines from Los Angeles County, Biola announced adjustments to its chapel schedule in an email on Jan. 7. This includes limiting chapel capacity to 500 and adding additional chapel times to Singspiration, one of Biola’s most popular chapels.
In addition to these changes, two chapel credits will be added to every student’s account.
RESPONSES FROM OTHER UNIVERSITIES
Some California universities extended remote learning to the end of January. According to KTLA, UCLA plans to continue its remote learning through Jan. 28. UCLA is only the latest school to make this extension, following other universities such as UC Irvine, UC Riverside, UC San Diego, UC Davis and UC Santa Cruz.