Key Messages:

  • The safe and gradual return to campus continues
  • Winter 2022 will see more in-person courses, but online options remain available
  • Gradual return of units in Phase 4 on a unit-by-unit basis to begin in February
  • On-campus activities will increase gradually as well
  • Update to travel advisory policy
  • All employees must submit their vaccination attestation in cuScreen
  • Walk-in flu shot clinic available on campus until Friday, November 12

November 9, 2021

The health and safety of all members of the Carleton community continues to be our top priority. Following a successful safe and gradual return to campus this fall, we would like to provide an update on our plans for the winter 2022 term.

These plans remain subject to change based on evolving public health advice, but we expect that mandatory mask use, physical distancing, mandatory vaccination requirements and daily screening through cuScreen will continue to be in place at the university throughout the winter term.

Winter 2022 Course Delivery

In line with the Carleton University Scenario Planning (CUSP) recommendations that were confirmed by Senate in October, we will be offering a mix of in-person courses and online options to maximize flexibility for students. The winter 2022 term will see more in-person classes than fall 2021, and we are also planning some classes with increased capacity limits, but we will continue to follow Ottawa Public Health’s recommendations for physical distancing in instructional spaces.

On-Campus Activities

We anticipate that we will be able to have more activity on campus due to our vaccination, masking and screening requirements. As of November 15, 2021, we will safely increase capacity limits in our athletics facilities and dining locations. Throughout the winter term, we are looking to provide more opportunities for additional in-person student engagement activities on campus outside of the classroom.

Though this remains to be confirmed, we anticipate that we will be able to resume on-campus conferences as of May 2022 and are currently exploring in-person Convocation Ceremonies in June 2022. These activities are, of course, subject to the pandemic trajectory as well as public health requirements and capacity limits based on physical distancing requirements.

Updated Travel Advisory

We have updated our travel advisory policy, particularly with respect to international travel. University-related international travel remains limited, but we recognize that there are instances where international travel is essential for work purposes and career development. Faculty and staff who are considering that international travel is essential may submit an exemption request to the relevant dean or vice-president. In-person student mobility programs such as exchange programs remain restricted at this time, but we are planning to offer in-person student mobility beginning in the fall 2022 term.

Return of Phase 4 Units

We expect that units in Phase 4 will begin returning to campus on a unit-by-unit basis between February and April 2022, following all public health guidelines and regulations. The Return to Campus Working Group will be working directly with each of the Phase 4 departments and units towards a safe and gradual return. Specific plans and timelines will be developed in consultation with each unit and staff will be provided with a date of return with at least one month’s notice. As with the Phase 3 return, not all members of a unit will be returning at once. More information and guidance will be provided as we move forward.

For units currently on campus (Phases 1-3), we will maintain current staffing levels for winter 2022. Staffing levels are expected to increase subject to evolving physical distancing requirements, with a full operational return of all staff in all phases by September 2022. The Carleton University Flexible Arrangements (CUFA) Working Group is continuing to develop a flexible work arrangements framework and information will be communicated to the community as it is available.

Vaccination Requirements

As noted in the COVID-19 Mandatory Vaccination Policy, all university employees, including, but not limited to, faculty, contract instructors, staff, teaching/research assistants, postdoctoral researchers, and casual staff are required to submit their attestation of vaccination status (and, if vaccinated, their proof of vaccination) in cuScreen. This requirement applies to all employees, whether or not their employment duties currently require them to be on campus and whether or not they intend to attend Carleton property or in-person university activities now or in the future. This information is essential to allow the university to plan appropriately for its operational requirements and increased activity on campus.

Vaccination Clinics

As the majority of individuals on campus have been fully vaccinated against COVID-19, Health and Counselling Services have transitioned from providing COVID-19 vaccines to flu shots. Flu shot clinics will be available this week until November 12 on a drop-in basis from noon to 4:00 p.m. in the Residence Commons conference rooms. Drop-in COVID-19 vaccinations remain readily available at any community clinicpop-up clinic or neighbourhood vaccination hub in Ottawa during their hours of operation.

While we are seeing positive trends, we are not out of the pandemic. We must continue to be vigilant and follow all health and safety measures including the completion of the daily screening requirement in cuScreen. We continue to follow the advice of Ottawa Public HealthPublic Health Ontario, and the Government of Ontario. Our current plans are all depending on the situation continuing to improve in Ottawa and across Ontario and we will adapt our plans as required by evolving regulations, public health advice and overall health and safety.

Frequent updates will be provided as we continue to work towards a full return to campus. For more information regarding Carleton’s response to COVID-19, please visit the COVID-19 website.


Suzanne Blanchard
COVID-19 Lead on behalf of the COVID-19 Steering Committee

Tuesday, November 9, 2021 in
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