December 17, 2020
Message to Employees Regarding COVID-19 Testing

Dear A&M-San Antonio Community Member,  

Last week you received an update regarding changes to the spring 2021 academic calendar, which were made with the intention of protecting the health and safety of the campus community. I am writing today to make you aware of another decision that will help maintain a safe working environment for our A&M-San Antonio campus community.

All employees returning to campus to work for the first time in 2021 during the week of January 4 or January 11 must be able to confirm a negative COVID-19 test result. This includes student employees.

Given the higher likelihood of travel and/or gathering in groups during the holiday break, and concerns about asymptomatic spread of the virus, this measure will offer additional protection for campus community members as we return to work in advance of the spring semester.

What you need to do

Your manager has determined 1) which employees will return to work on campus during the weeks of January 4 and January 11 to support the operational needs of your department and 2) which employees will work remotely. As a condition of returning to on-campus work, employees must confirm a negative result for a COVID-19 test administered within 48 hours of their return to campus. A rapid test is encouraged to meet the timeline.

  • For employees reporting to work on campus during those two weeks, a supply of rapid-result COVID-19 tests is available for your convenience.
  •  Anyone returning to campus for work during the week of Jan. 4 or Jan. 11 can test on campus, free of charge.
    • Employees are required to take two tests: 1) the rapid test and 2) what is known as a PCR test, which produces more accurate results but takes 24-48 hours to process.
    • If an employee's rapid test result, which will be known in approximately 15 minutes, is negative, the employee may remain on campus to work. You are required to take the PCR test on your first day back on campus. Hours are 9 a.m. - 2 p.m. in modular 101B.
    • If the PCR test results later come back positive, the employee will not be able to continue working on campus until cleared to do so.
  • Individuals are not required to test on campus. If an employee finds it more convenient to do so, they may test elsewhere. However, a confirmation of a negative result for a test administered within 48 hours of returning to campus must be provided to their supervisor.
    • If the test from an off-campus location was a rapid test, employees will still need to take the more reliable PCR test on campus to confirm the result.
  • All employees designated as returning to campus to work on the weeks of Jan. 4 and Jan.11 and in need of rapid testing will receive another email from me with the testing locations, date and time by noon, Friday, December 18, 2020.

 A reminder to self-report travel

If you are planning to travel during the holiday break, please submit the self-reporting travel form as soon as plans are known. The information will only be used to ensure compliance with A&M System protocols and policies for mitigating the risk of COVID-19.

Finally, we have all seen media reports regarding the roll out of the nation's vaccine supply and distribution. While the administering of the vaccine is a very welcome positive development, now more than ever it is critical that we continue to adhere to the safety protocols that have kept our campus community safe. As the vaccine will not be generally available for many months, each of us plays an important role in the health and safety of our community. Let's continue to work together. 

We understand you will have questions about the testing requirement.  You can direct questions to your supervisor or submit them through the Ask a Question link on the Community.Safety.Together website. Thank you for all you have been doing to ensure that the A&M-San Antonio campus continues to be a safe environment.

Kathy Funk-Baxter
Vice President of Business Affairs