New Brunswick

Mount Allison, UdeM announce temporary move to online learning

Two New Brunswick universities have announced they'll be starting the winter semester online following record-breaking case numbers in the province. 

New Brunswick set single-day COVID-19 case-count record on Thursday.

The Flemington biology building at Mount Allison University. (Mount Allison University )

Two New Brunswick universities have announced they'll be starting the winter semester online following record-breaking case numbers in the province. 

New Brunswick set a single-day record for new COVID-19 cases on Thursday with 177, followed by another 163 on Friday.

Mount Allison University students will be taking online courses for at least two weeks when classes resume on Jan. 10, according to a statement from the university on Friday.

"Changes such as these are never easy to implement and require collaboration across the university," said Jean-Paul Boudreau, the president and vice-chancellor of the university. 

"Case counts have been forecast to increase in the region due to the presence of the highly transmissible Omicron variant. As such, please continue to take every precaution as you complete the term and return home."

Université de Moncton has made similar moves. Online learning begins Jan. 10 and will run until at least Jan. 14. 

Exceptions are being made for some courses that require in-person attendance, the university said in a statement to students.

The school says it expects to reopen classrooms on Jan. 17. 

Sixteen more cases of Omicron were confirmed in New Brunswick as of Friday, bringing the total to 30.

The University of New Brunswick, St. Thomas University, Collège communautaire du Nouveau-Brunswick and New Brunswick Community College have not indicated they intend to go ahead with online learning starting in January. 

NBCC is asking students to begin daily rapid testing on Dec. 30 before classes resume so students can avoid attending class while infected.

The Francophone community college also said that vaccinations will become mandatory for those attending classes on campus beginning Feb. 18.

Several colleges and universities in Nova Scotia have announced a move to online learning for at least the beginning of the semester. 

Nova Scotia Community College said winter classes will start as scheduled, but all classes will remain online until at least Jan. 21. Dalhousie University and the University of King's College will also stay online for the first two weeks of the term, with some exceptions for some courses that need to be held in person.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Miriam Lafontaine is a reporter with CBC Montreal. She previously worked with CBC New Brunswick in Fredericton, and can be reached at miriam.lafontaine@cbc.ca.

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