Dear Faculty, Staff, Students and Parents,
Our Fall semester is off to a very good start, and we are grateful for your efforts to put Family First and keep yourselves and each other protected from COVID-19. As you can see on our public dashboard, Baylor’s number of active cases and positivity rates have decreased significantly over the past two weeks. Our ability to care for and support those impacted by the virus have been successful, while keeping our academic endeavors on track. I am proud to be part of this remarkable community.
Even as we began the Fall, we were looking ahead to the safest and most effective plan for our Spring semester. Our planning priority has been the safe completion of the Spring semester with campus-based instruction. To support that priority, we will modify our Spring 2021 semester schedule as follows. Note: the calendars for the Law School and online graduate professional programs have not changed.
- On January 18, the University will be closed to commemorate the Martin Luther King, Jr. Holiday.
- Spring Classes will begin on January 19. This delayed start provides an extra week of Winter Break and a 14-day period following family gatherings over the Christmas and New Year holidays to “quarantine” in preparation for return to campus. This period also provides the option for a potential pre-semester COVID-19 testing program for students, faculty and staff, similar to what was completed in advance of the Fall semester.
- Like many major universities across the country – and Big 12 schools such as TCU, Kansas, Kansas State and Iowa State announcing so far – Baylor will not take a traditional Spring Break this year. Instead, Winter Break has been extended at the beginning of the semester. Keeping students, faculty and staff safely on campus, preventing COVID-19 outbreaks like we saw across the country last Spring and progressing toward the successful completion of the Spring semester is our highest priority.
- The University will celebrate Good Friday with a holiday on April 2 as part of our recognition of Easter.
- Diadeloso will be suspended for this Spring and will be a day of class instruction.
- The last day of classes for the Spring semester will be April 28. Study days and exams will commence April 29 through May 5.
- Spring Commencement is planned for May 6-8 in-person with an additional ceremony (-ies) on Thursday to allow us to safely accommodate families and guests at these important events.
Each member of the Baylor Family plays a vital role in our ability to deliver the academic excellence that makes Baylor stand apart. Our commitment begins and ends with our mission in mind – to educate men and women for worldwide leadership and service by integrating academic excellence and Christian commitment within a caring community.
We will provide additional planning details and deadlines related to class scheduling and registration to faculty and staff in the days ahead. Thank you, again, for all you are doing to make our Fall semester successful and for all you will do as we launch a successful Spring semester at Baylor.
Nancy Brickhouse, Ph.D.