Trigger Level 1 threshold raised to 250 cases

RPI announces in-person instruction, reaches Trigger Level 1, raises minimum threshold

According to Rensselaer’s testing dashboard, there have been 136 cases of COVID-19 within the RPI community in the first week of testing, surpassing the initial requirement for Trigger Level 1 of 70 cases. Despite crossing the initial Trigger Level 1 threshold on Friday, January 21, classes are still set to resume in person on Monday, as confirmed in an email sent to the RPI community on Friday. On Saturday, the Spring 2022 Trigger Level 1 threshold was raised from more than 70 to more than 250 cases. The web page containing the Spring 2022 trigger levels was moved to a new URL and the trigger levels for this semester were removed. A new set of trigger levels then appeared on a different web page. No communication of the new protocols was made to the RPI community. as of January 24.

RPI’s University Health and Safety Protocols goes over “Trigger Levels,” which outline restrictions to campus life if there are a certain number of positive COVID-19 cases among those with campus access. Those who have tested positive must isolate for 10 days and those who have been in close contact with someone who has tested positive must quarantine.. With the exception of testing, everyone else will go through a mandatory “quarantine-in-place” during which period all campus events and gatherings are suspended and in-person instruction will be suspended for a minimum of two weeks. Trigger Level 1 officially ends when spreading is deemed “under control,” after which the Return to Campus-Based Operations protocols and procedures will resume, found here. There is no defined measurement for when “under control” has been reached.

At the end of last semester, RPI reached Trigger Level 1, although its accompanying policies were not enforced. Trigger Level 1 was also reached on March 3, 2021.

Trigger Level 2 occurs when “confirmed [COVID-19] cases exceed our ability to isolate and quarantine students or [has] indications of significant community spread,” for which the Institute has given no quantifiable metric.

RPI has not made any announcement on its change of Trigger Level 1 policies and its timing.

Editor's Note: This article has been updated with graphics and the latest positive test numbers.