BOULDER, Colo. — The University of Colorado at Boulder (CU Boulder) announced Thursday the school plans to replace the traditional spring break with "wellness days" to help prevent the spread of travel-related COVID-19 infections.
Those wellness days are planned for Feb. 17 and March 25 and will be in lieu of the traditional weeklong break. The semester will also begin three days later than previously scheduled.
"Like every university in the county we know we can't deliver the full, traditional college experience that everyone wants," CU Boulder Chancellor Phil DiStefano said. "But we've worked to make it engaging, safe, valuable and fun as possible."
DiStefano said the school is working to improve modes of instruction, providing more flexibility for facility and students and better dining options.
The school is also working to provide more social activities including options for students to reserve in-person dining and intramural sports.
DiStefano also announced that $1.8 million is being spent to expand the school's mental health services.
That funding will be used to fill 13.5 mental health and psychological positions over the next four years, expanding clinical services to CU Boulder's colleges and schools.
That includes mental health councilors that will be embedded in some graduate schools, allowing existing counselors to focus on other students.
Four additional counseling phone lines will also be added.
"This decision was made after careful deliberation and to protect the health and well-being of our community," school officials said in their announcement online.
CU Boulder officials also announced Thursday their plans to continue with a mix of in-person, remote, and hybrid course modes for the spring 2021 semester which will begin on Jan. 14.
During the fall semester, officials said about 25% of classes were fully in-person, about 25% were fully remote and about 50% are a hybrid of in-person and remote learning.
Students are invited to a community town hall set to take place on Friday, Oct. 23 from 11 a.m. to noon.
CU had been at the heart of an uptick in COVID-19 cases in Boulder County which prompted the school to temporarily shift to remote learning earlier this semester. Public Health Orders were also put in place to restricts gatherings among those between the ages of 18 and 22. Following an improvement in conditions, those restrictions were relaxed.
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