Min H. Kao Building Health Safety Plan Requirements

Updated 7/21/2020

Derived from

This guidance builds on prior training for the Return to Campus and the Return to Classrooms that established protocols such as:

  • Social distancing, wearing face masks, regular washing of hands
  • Classrooms rearranged to enable social distancing
  • Students using university-provided cleaning materials to sanitize their work areas in a classroom (For laboratories, cleaning will be done twice—as students arrive and also as they prepare to leave.)
  • Protocols for cleaning classroom technology by instructors
  • Minimizing instructional interactions where persons are within six feet with a total not to exceed 10 minutes per class session
  • Health safety plan for students included in course syllabus
  1. Can the entire laboratory period be conducted with all persons at least six feet from each other at all times? This instructional goal is strongly encouraged.
  2. If persons are going to be closer than six feet for a laboratory activity:
    1. Can the activity be replaced, possibly virtually, to achieve the learning goal?
    2. What can be done to ensure less than 10 total minutes of such interaction per student or instructor?
    3. Can an alternative activity be created for students or instructors who do not wish to participate in an activity where social distancing cannot be maintained?
  3. If partnering of students for laboratory activities is intended, is it possible to pair students who share other aspects of their lives such as living accommodations?
  4. How and when will the seating chart for the laboratory class be done?
  5. Can common equipment/samples/etc. be situated in room to maintain six-foot separation?
  6. How can laboratory activities be developed to minimize the sharing of equipment and materials? Or will gloves be needed (please see next section)?
  7. Do health safety procedures necessitate changes to laboratory safety procedures? If so, can laboratory safety be maintained or does the experimental activity require change to be compliant with both types of safety requirements?
  1. Does a laboratory procedure preclude students wearing their masks? If so, is it necessary or can it be replaced, possibly virtually, to achieve the learning goal? Note that any student who states that they have a medical reason for not wearing a mask will need documentation provided by Student Disability Services or the Student Health Center to show to the instructor. Such a student should always utilize social distancing during the laboratory class.
  2. Will the use of face shields enhance the safety of students and/or instructor? Face shields will be available to each student for free from the university bookstore (VolShop), and face shields are available for instructors by the PPE request process through departmental offices. Face shields are not a replacement for face coverings.
  3. Will using disposable gloves for the entirety or a portion of the lab period enhance safety of students and/or instructor? If gloves are being ordered for an instructional laboratory only to deal with COVID-19 safety, the university will provide them free of charge by the PPE request process through departmental offices.
  4. Will lab coats be required for each student? Lab coats should not be shared during or between laboratory classes, so each student should have purchased their own lab coat if required. Students should not be allowed to take the lab coats home during the semester and lab coats should be stored safely, perhaps with other class-related PPE for each student.
  5. Will students need to remove health-safety PPE during experimental activity because of a requirement for laboratory safety? If so, is the activity necessary or can it be replaced, possibly virtually, to achieve the learning goal? If still necessary, can social distancing be maintained and hand-cleaning occur immediately afterward?
  6. Does the health-safety planning incorporate time between classes for instructor(s) to clean non-student work areas, equipment, cabinetry, etc. in preparation for the next group of students?
  7. Is the instructional laboratory class being conducted in a research laboratory? If so, the Research Health Safety Plan will need to be updated for the instructional activity.
  1. Will furniture need to be removed from the laboratory room to support social distancing for the semester?
  2. Will physical barriers be needed, and if so, why?
  3. Will any navigational signage or floor markings be needed to assist with social distancing?
  4. Will digital AV equipment need to be added to the laboratory room to support a hybrid form of instruction? If so, does the laboratory need a webcam, microphone(s), speakers? Will instructors use computer, tablet and/or phone to connect to Zoom and the laboratory digital AV? Will recording of the laboratory sessions be desired or needed? Requests for digital AV equipment can be made to the Office of Innovative Technologies.
  1. Is the use of computer workstations to be changed by either removing or disabling computers to achieve social distancing? Will furniture need to be removed? Remember to consider this in a 360° view and not simply side to side.
  2. Does the lab use ensure that students use the same computer for the entire class period?
  3. Are computers and monitors powered up at all times with a power-saving plan that reactivates them when a student uses a keyboard or mouse, so that power buttons are not touched?
  4. Do the keyboards have plastic covers that allow typing and facilitate cleaning?
  5. Does the laboratory have sanitizer and wipes for keyboard and mouse cleaning by students?
  1. Is the instruction entirely face-to-face or is a hybrid mode with AV/IT requirements being utilized?
  2. How are health safety requirements for personal interactions affected?
  3. How is the use of PPE affected?
  4. Will health safety planning need to consider transportation to the laboratory site? Will this transportation be university-provided or student-provided?
  5. Does the outdoor/off-campus location have a pre-existing health safety plan? If so, is this plan incorporated into the health safety planning for the course as it should be?
  6. Will the students be taught about or trained in the plan? If so, when?

Resource for preparation and planning these outdoor and offsite activities:

  1. Is the health safety plan for the laboratory included in the course syllabus?
  2. Will the health safety be posted in the laboratory?
  3. Will the students be taught about or trained in the plan? If so, when?
  4. Do departments have plans to train instructors, particularly graduate teaching assistants/associates about dealing with noncompliant students, such as contacting a colleague or supervisor to be present for resolving the situation?
  5. Are instructors familiar with the guidance in the Return to Classroom training for resolving this situation?
  1. Does the laboratory course/section have sufficient instructors to be able to offer face-to-face and/or hybrid instruction? If not, what is the instructional plan for an online version of the laboratory course/section?
  2. Does the instructional plan allow for students who opt out of face-to-face or hybrid laboratories and would participate virtually for the semester?
  3. Does the instructional plan for the laboratory section provide a means for students who are absent due to COVID-19 or university-required isolation to complete replacement or make-up work?
  4. Does the instructional plan provide for a replacement instructor if the instructor is unable to teach the lab (e.g., the instructor is ill)?
  5. Does the instructional plan encompass the possibility that the course may need to shift to online delivery due to societal conditions with respect to the pandemic?

Derived from

In preparation for a phased reopening, supervisors and designated faculty/staff should evaluate and establish proper workspace social distancing controls in their respective areas. In all cases consider your internal and external customers as well as volume of foot traffic. Workspace controls should be regularly evaluated for effectiveness as more employees return to campus. Use the checklist below to establish and evaluate workspace controls for your units.

Please note that if you need to order signage or other physical barriers as a result of your workspace analysis, it may require you to create temporary social distancing controls.

  • Seating: Are workspace seats six feet apart or are individual offices available? If so, these spaces are OK.
  • Workstations: Can the workstations be effectively spread out, or can work schedules be modified such that employees are not present at the same time in order to achieve at least six-foot of separation? If so, these reworked spaces are OK.
  • Common Areas: Have common areas such as break rooms, lobbies, or meeting spaces been restricted or proper social distancing measures put in place (examples include removing or restricting chairs and/or spacing tables six feet apart)? If so, these reworked spaces are OK.
  • Customer interface: Does the interface with customers provide a six-foot separation? If so, these spaces are OK.
  • Floor Signage: Can a six-foot separation be created by signage on the floor? This can be temporarily accomplished with blue painter’s tape, until more long-term signage is available. To arrange for signage and installation, see below.
  • Physical Barriers: If floor signage will not provide a six-foot separation, can a physical barrier (table or stanchions) be placed between the customer and staff to create a six-foot separation? If so, these spaces are OK once the barriers have been installed. To order stanchions, see below.
  • Clear Screens: If physical barriers cannot be used, a clear screen may be necessary to separate the customer from employees. Clear screens are being installed in priority common areas. Supervisors should create a request by visiting or contact Facilities Services (865) 946-7777 to request assistance in evaluating an internal space. A representative of the Facilities Services Design team will work with you to evaluate the possibility for installation of clear screens and related cost to the ordering unit.
  • Standardized Signage: Print and display the standardized signage available to campus as a download for use within a supervisor’s assigned area. This signage will address general guidelines for social distancing, wearing masks, washing hands, using sanitizer, etc. and can be found at Please do not adhere material to wood surfaces. Do not fasten in or onto walls, ceilings or countertops.
  • Common Space Signage: Supervisors are not responsible for signage for common spaces such as building entrances, lobbies, and elevators. Signage for these spaces is being developed and installed.

If any of the above check boxes were left blank and you need assistance with evaluation of a workspace for proper social distancing, barriers, and signage please contact Facilities Services at (865) 946-7777. Someone will be assigned to you for consultation, which may include visiting your space if necessary.