UW- Madison Faculty Senate votes to cancel spring break, approves new academic calendar

The change will move the start date of the spring semester back a week
Published: Sep. 14, 2020 at 7:10 AM CDT|Updated: Sep. 14, 2020 at 5:45 PM CDT
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MADISON, Wis. (WMTV) - UW-Madison’s Faculty Senate voted in favor of canceling the university’s 2021 spring break on Monday afternoon.

Instead of a week-long break, the university will give students off three additional days.

In the proposal, the 2021 spring semester will start a week later than usual, with classes set to begin on January 25 instead of January 19. Instead of spring break from March 27 to April 4, UW-Madison would give students off March 27 as well as April 2 and 3.

Proposed changes UW-Madison's Faculty Senate is set to vote on Monday
Proposed changes UW-Madison's Faculty Senate is set to vote on Monday(UW-Madison)

In the proposal document, school officials said this was being proposed “amid concerns that a typical spring break, when many travel far and wide, would result in an unmanageable outbreak of COVID-19.” You can find the full document here.

Chancellor Rebecca Blank stood by her decision of starting the school year off with in-person classes and said having students in the classroom is the way to go. She also said classroom COVID-19 policies work because no positive cases have been linked to in-person instruction.

Three hundred students have been referred to the Office of Student Conduct and Community Standards for violating COVID-19 policies, Blank noted, and 12 students are being reviewed for an emergency suspension.

UW- Madison officials do not anticipate a financial emergency and will be considering an extension date for full tuition refunds.

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