ST. AUGUSTINE, Fla. – Flagler College became the latest Florida university to make the decision to move to online classes as a precaution during the coronavirus outbreak.
The private college in St. Augustine announced Thursday that it will cancel class Friday and move to online classes following spring break, which begins next week.
“At today’s Flagler College Risk Management meeting about the COVID-19 Novel Coronavirus, it was decided that in an abundance of caution and to allow students time to make travel plans that we will cancel classes on Friday, March 13, and move all classes online for two weeks beginning March 23, after the College’s regularly scheduled spring break,” the school announced in a media release.
The decision came a day after the Department of Health announced a confirmed case of coronavirus in St. Johns County.
Among six new positive cases of the coronavirus in Florida announced by the Department of Health in the last 12 hours was a 63-year-old New York resident who visited Daytona Bike Week and is currently in St. Johns County.
Students were encouraged to return to their permanent residence for the two-week period between March 23 to April 3.
“All students should take academic materials including books and laptops, health information, as well as other critical information or supplies before leaving for spring break,” according to the release.
Flagler College said its campus and regular services will remain open to students, faculty and staff during the two-week period.
There are currently no COVID-19 cases linked to any of any universities or colleges in Florida, according to the most recent updates, but schools across the state are taking precautions to prevent the spread of the new coronavirus on campus.
Weeks ago, colleges started canceling international trips and study abroad programs to areas hit hard by COVID-19, including China and Italy.
More recently, schools began canceling or postponing sporting events. By Wednesday, most major universities announced they will temporarity suspend in-person classes and move all instruction online temporarily.