Health & Safety Guidelines
12 Health and Safety Guidelines
The following guidelines are guiding Texas State in protecting the health and safety of our living, learning, and working environments. Although university operations are modified in different ways to suit each area’s daily functions and populations served, these twelve guidelines are the foundation for all modifications university-wide.
Face masks have proven very effective in preventing the spread of COVID-19 on our campuses. The university recommends that everyone, vaccinated and unvaccinated, wear face masks indoors. Face masks are not necessary outdoors but are recommended for unvaccinated persons in crowded settings. Per standing guidance from Governor Abbott’s Executive Order No. GA-36 issued on May 18, 2021, and confirmed by The Texas State University System Office of General Counsel, Texas State is not able to require face coverings. Visit the Face Coverings & Masks page for more information.
Physical distancing of at least 6 feet should be maintained whenever possible indoors and outdoors. Texas State has modified on-campus operations in numerous ways to promote physical distancing:
- Limiting indoor spaces occupant density to 50% of the room's capacity and outdoor social gatherings to no more than 10 people (Note: Beginning August 9, 2021, capacity restrictions for all indoor and outdoor spaces will be lifted.)
- Changing traditional face-to-face classroom activities and expanding online, hybrid and "flexible" face-to-face courses
- Using assigned seats in classes that must meet face-to-face with empty seats between students
- Re-arranging and sometimes removing furniture in common areas
- Controlling entrance and exit points of high traffic areas
- Limiting event attendance and face-to-face student activities
- Modifying on-campus shuttle services
- Reducing face-to-face meetings. Alternatives to face to face meetings in small spaces include accessing larger spaces, video conferencing in Teams or Zoom, telephone calls, and others.
Practice proper hand hygiene. Frequent hand washing is one of the most important things we must do to keep our community safe. When hand washing is not possible, hand sanitizer is a good substitute.
- Many students have been issued personal hand sanitizer misters. For example, hand sanitizer misters were handed out by Residence Life staff during move in.
- Hand sanitizer stations are on the San Marcos and Round Rock Campuses. Visit, Sanitizer Stations at Texas State to find either a dual purpose or standard hand sanitizer station at Texas State. The dual purpose stations provide students a place to refill their university-issued misters or quick, touch-free hand disinfection. There are also hand sanitizer stations in all Texas State residence hall lobbies. The stations are refilled nightly.
Each day, students and employees must conduct a basic self-assessment for symptoms of COVID-19 before they come to either university campus.
This self-assessment is a critical step every Bobcat must take to keep our community safe. A significant proportion of those infected with COVID-19 are asymptomatic and don’t know they are infected. The Delta variant that is spreading rapidly often causes mild symptoms like a cold (headache, sore throat, runny nose and fever). If you feel like you have a cold, get tested for COVID-19 and self-isolate.
COVID-19 testing is critical in our efforts to keep our campuses healthy and safe. COVID-19 testing for students, faculty and staff consists of three components: testing people with symptoms, testing people with NO symptoms, and testing people who have been exposed or are close contacts. Find testing locations at TX COVID-19 Test Collection Sites and Curative, Inc. Testing Sites.
Report to Bobcat Trace
If you receive a positive COVID-19 test result, report it to Bobcat Trace as soon as possible. When you do, you will receive guidance on isolation protocols, and the contact tracing team will begin to identify and notify close contacts.
Sick persons must stay home and not come to either university campus or any university events. This includes anyone exhibiting symptoms who is not yet diagnosed with an illness.
- Students: Conduct a daily self-assessment. Sick persons must stay home. This includes anyone exhibiting symptoms who is not yet diagnosed with an illness. Notify your instructors as soon as possible that you'll miss class. Call your doctor or the Student Health Center for medical attention and COVID-19 testing, if deemed appropriate.
- Employees: Conduct a daily self-assessment. Sick persons must stay home. This includes anyone exhibiting symptoms who is not yet diagnosed with an illness. Employees must follow appropriate policies for providing notice when sick. The university provides several leave and benefit options for our employees. If an employee shows up to work and has symptoms consistent with a COVID-19 illness, their supervisor must direct them to leave the workplace immediately and seek medical evaluation and COVID-19 testing, if deemed appropriate.
Custodial staff have been trained on effective methods and provided protective equipment as needed for their jobs.
- Custodial services spray classrooms nightly with a hospital-grade sanitizer using an electrostatic sprayer. The concentration is sufficient to kill the virus but low enough not to damage fabrics or corrode metal surfaces. The product is approved by the FDA and has long been utilized in hospitals.
We have extended the classroom electrostatic anti-viral spraying to include shared spaces and private offices on our campuses on a regular basis.
- Cleaning supplies, including sprayers, cloths, and disposable gloves, are placed in a container in each classroom in case there is an immediate need. Custodial services clean and restock supplies as needed. The containers also provide a few masks for those individuals who may have forgotten their masks that day.
Indoor ventilation was evaluated and optimized across our campuses. Many university departments collaborated with Facilities Operations to evaluate and identify spaces where indoor ventilation improvements were warranted, following a set of guidelines being used by many large universities across the country. This optimization involved:
- Maximizing the amount of outside air introduced into our buildings
- Decreasing temperature while maintaining humidity control
- Optimizing space pressurization
- Increasing air changes per hour
Installing HEPA filtration equipment with ultraviolet light treatment capabilities in all organized classrooms.
Physical barriers and boundaries, such as plexiglass sneeze guards, have been installed in key areas on Texas State campuses where there is significant face-to-face interaction. Additionally, students, faculty and staff should not congregate in public walkways and spaces. This guidance is important for everyone at Texas State:
Students should exit buildings as quickly as possible upon class dismissal and not linger in hallways.
Outdoors, all of us should avoid crowded areas, not gather in large groups, and maintain a six-foot distance when we are interacting with other people.
Get a COVID-19 Vaccination
Vaccination has been shown to be safe and effective for preventing infection with COVID-19. Vaccination can also decrease the spread of infection. Texas State University has held several mass vaccine events for students, faculty, staff, and community members. Vaccines are available at the Student Health Center (SHC) by appointment for students, faculty, and staff. Call the SHC to make an appointment. More information on vaccinations at Texas State can be found on the Health Center website.
*Information provided in the Roadmap may change or be updated as needed to respond to the evolving COVID-19 situation.