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Roane State Community College

Coronavirus COVID-19
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Tennessee Reconnect and Promise. Graduating high school seniors can attend tuition-free. Free tuition for adults.Tennessee Reconnect and Promise. Graduating high school seniors can attend tuition-free. Free tuition for adults.
Online degrees available. Choose from seven completely online programs.Online degrees available. Choose from seven completely online programs.

Coronavirus Response - FAQ

IMPORTANT NOTE: The frequently asked questions and answers below will continue to be updated as new information is provided. If you have an immediate health concern, you should contact your healthcare provider. If you require emergency medical assistance, call 911.

What has Roane State done in response to the coronavirus pandemic?

In February 2020, Roane State assembled an emergency action committee to monitor the rapidly evolving coronavirus situation. This committee has been meeting on a weekly basis and more frequently as needed to address the concerns of the campus community. They have updated our Pandemic Preparedness Plan, created an online resource page and assisted with communicating critical information to students, faculty and staff.

On March 13, 2020, Roane State announced an extension of the spring break period through March 22, 2020. This extension reduced the number of students and staff on campus and allowed time for faculty to prepare for the transition to delivering their courses online.

On March 23, 2020, all campuses were closed and most courses resumed in an online format. Those courses remained online for the rest of the spring semester. Campuses were closed through April 30, 2020, when the State of Tennessee's Safer-at-Home order expired. Only a small number of essential personnel were permitted on campus to perform critical tasks. This time period was also used for enhanced cleaning of facilities.

Beginning May 4, 2020, limited access on four campuses began so that programs could complete required in-person skills testing. The limited access locations included Roane County, Oak Ridge, Knox and Clinton. Only certain buildings or areas were used in these locations and only those who were approved were allowed access. All activity on campuses complied with CDC guidelines for safe physical distancing, face coverings, sanitizing and other precautions.

On June 24, 2020, Roane State outlined its phased reopening plan for the remainder of the summer term and leading into fall. RSCC offered a mix of in-person and online classes for the Fall 2020 semester and continued those offerings for Spring 2021. Fall 2021 offered more on ground classes as part of a return to campus. The college may transition to online learning again if the need arises.

The health and safety of students, faculty, staff, their families, and the broader communities we serve are the top priority. We continue to seek guidance from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the Tennessee Department of Health and our local health departments as well as the Tennessee Board of Regents with any action or precaution taken in response to this pandemic. We hope these measures will help prevent the spread of COVID-19.

Has there been a case of COVID-19 confirmed on any of Roane State’s campuses?

Yes, Roane State recieved the first report of a confirmed case of COVID-19 from a student on June 18, 2020. Steps were taken to close and clean affected areas and notify those who had been in close contact with the student. Additional cases have since been reported by students, employees and visitors. Case numbers and data collected since August 2020 are available for review online. (As of July 19, 2022, the self-reporting portal was closed.) Roane State moved to level two of its Pandemic Preparedness Plan on March 13, 2020, as a public health precaution.

What should I do if I test positive for COVID-19?

Students should notify their instructor(s) as soon as possible. College employees should notify their supervisor and advise whether they will be absent due to illness or working remotely (if applicable) during the isolation period. Please also advise your instructor or supervisor if you believe you may have been in close contact with other students or co-workers during the 48 hours prior to your test. Close contact means being within six feet of someone for a total of 15 minutes or more over a 24-hour period.

Where can I see how the college plans to respond if the situation in our area worsens?

Roane State’s Pandemic Preparedness Plan is available for review along with additional information at the following link: The plan includes details on the college’s multi-tiered response to coronavirus or any other widespread/pandemic illness.

Roane State will continue to monitor all the factors impacting our decisions regarding college schedule and campus access in consultation with health experts and the Tennessee Board of Regents.

The Pandemic Preparedness Plan and the coronavirus resource page listed above will continue to be updated as additional items of potential concern are identified.

What should I do if I find out I have been around someone who has tested positive for COVID-19?

Please note that this only applies if you were around the individual during the time they were experiencing symptoms and up to two days prior to their onset of symptoms or the date of their test. 

You should alert your instructor/supervisor that you have been in contact with someone who has tested positive for COVID-19. You will need to remain in quarantine for the period of time recommended by the CDC based on your unique circumstances.

If you are an employee, please contact Human Resources to find out if any resources may be available to you.

What if I have had indirect contact with a positive case? For example, you might have been in close contact with someone who learned that they had come into close contact with someone else who tested positive.

In this very common situation, you can still report to class/work but should continue to monitor for COVID-19 symptoms. Those symptoms include cough, shortness of breath, sore throat, fever (in last 48 hours), loss of taste or smell, vomiting or diarrhea (in the last 24 hours). If any of these symptoms develop and they are NOT related to underlying conditions, please contact your instructor/supervisor to make alternative arrangements until you are symptom free.

Please note that the above procedure does not apply if you have had direct contact with a person who tests positive for COVID-19; it only applies to indirect contact (contact with someone who is not sick and has not tested positive).

Can employees continue to work remotely?

Please work with Human Resources for this request. RSCC will work with you any way possible to accommodate your request as long as tasks are completed and the coverage can be maintained. These will be reviewed case by case. Possible alternatives could be a change in your work schedule or physical location. Any accommodating request will have to be submitted to Human Resources for review and approval.

Can I request an update to the household income reported on the FAFSA due to reduction in income resulting from the COVID-19 crisis?

Students may request an update to the income reported on the FAFSA for various reasons. Specific options relating to the COVID-19 crisis have been added. To submit a request, log into RaiderNet, click on Your Financial Aid and choose either the 2019-2020 Income Adjustment Request Form or the 2020-2021 Income Adjustment Request Form. Requests submitted are reviewed weekly and an email will be sent to your Roane State email account with additional steps to take.

If I have been vaccinated against COVID-19, do I still need to quarantine if I am exposed?

It depends on your situation. Please review the newly released guidance from the CDC regarding quarantine to determine your best strategy for preventing the transmission of COVID-19.

Do I still need to wear a mask if I've been fully vaccinated against COVID-19?

Roane State currently recommends that everyone wear a face mask when indoors on campus, regardless of vaccination status.

What are the symptoms of coronavirus or COVID-19?

The CDC reports that people with COVID-19 can have mild to severe symptoms. Older adults and people who have severe underlying medical conditions like heart or lung disease or diabetes seem to be at higher risk for developing more serious complications.

Symptoms may appear 2-14 days after exposure to the virus. People with these symptoms may have COVID-19:

Please note that this list is not all inclusive. The CDC advises that you should consult your medical provider for any other symptoms that are severe or concerning.

If I feel sick, what should I do?

You should not come to campus for any reason if you are ill. Students should contact their instructors to let them know if they are sick and will be absent from online or in-person class meetings.

Roane State will be providing flexibility for absences due to illness and other COVID-19 related issues. Students should contact their instructors as soon as possible to let them know if they will be absent from class and to inquire about how they might make up any missed work.

Employees should contact their supervisors as soon as possible to let them know if they develop symptoms and will be absent. If you are working from home and are unable to complete your work due to illness, you should also let your supervisor know.

If you begin to feel unwell or exhibit any symptoms of COVID-19 after arriving on campus, you should leave immediately if possible.

Is there a way to get medical advice without going to my doctor’s office?

Yes, enrolled students can use telemedicine resources available through WellVia to connect with doctors anytime, anywhere for a reduced cost. WellVia doctors diagnose acute non-emergency medical conditions and prescribe medications when clinically appropriate. This service is also available to spouses and children of Roane State students. See program details and registration information.

If my symptoms worsen, when should I seek medical attention?

The CDC advises that if you develop emergency warning signs for COVID-19, you should get medical attention immediately. Emergency warning signs include*:

*NOTE: This is not an all-inclusive list of emergency warning signs. Please consult your medical provider if you or a loved one begins exhibiting symptoms that are severe or concerning. Call 911 if you have a medical emergency and notify the operator that you have or think you might have COVID-19. If possible, put a cloth face covering on before medical help arrives.

If an RSCC employee tests positive for COVID-19, can they take paid leave or sick leave?

Leave provided through the Families First Coronavirus Relief Act (FFCRA) expired on September 30, 2021. After this date, employees who must be out of work due to COVID related reasons should use their own leave as needed. Situations can vary based on an employee’s ability to work remotely. You should contact your supervisor directly, or the college’s Human Resources office, to discuss your options.

What if I’m sick, but I don’t think it’s COVID-19?

If you are sick with any illness, you should stay home and contact your doctor for advice and treatment. Please also contact your instructor to let them know if you will be absent from online or in-person class meetings due to illness. Employees should contact their supervisors if they are sick and will be absent.

How can I protect myself from the coronavirus?

The CDC reports that the virus is thought to be spread mainly from person-to-person, between people who are in close contact and through respiratory droplets produced when an infected person coughs or sneezes. For this reason, the best way to prevent illness is to avoid being exposed to the virus. The CDC advises taking the following actions to protect yourself and others:

What happens during a college-wide closure?

Students and faculty continue their courses in a distance learning format (D2L) wherever possible. This means that instruction will be provided online using Momentum and Zoom.

Alternative arrangements will be made for courses that are not able to move completely to an online format. This may include a delay and extension of the semester.

Only essential personnel will be permitted on campus during a closure. If you are deemed essential, you will receive additional information and instruction from your direct supervisor.

How will I know what to do during a campus-specific or college-wide closure?

Roane State will communicate any announcements regarding interruptions to college activities and/or operations through RaiderAlerts, email, the college website, social media, and local media as needed. The same is true for an announcement that courses will return to the traditional in-person format. If you are impacted, instructors will provide information about how to continue classes and when to return. Please ensure your Roane State email inbox is not full and check it frequently for updates.

Is there any guidance from the college regarding personal travel, both domestic and international?

Roane State advises everyone to stay informed about global and domestic travel warnings. Please take the latest information from the CDC and the Tennessee Department of Health into consideration before traveling.

What should I be doing right now?

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