Paul L. Caron

Wednesday, March 4, 2020

First Law School Closes Due To Coronavirus; Student At Second Law School Self-Quarantines Due To Exposure

Following up on this morning's post:  New York Law School, Important Coronavirus Updates:

CoronavirusPosted at 6:00 a.m.
Dear NYLS Community,

I am writing to share important updates related to coronavirus.

Last night, a student let NYLS know that they were in contact with the attorney identified in the New York Law Journal as having tested positive for coronavirus. This is the same lawyer with whom a Cardozo Law student, now in self-quarantine, was also in contact. Our student acted responsibly and with great consideration for our community.

I have spoken by phone with the affected student and the New York City Health Department. The affected student and their roommate are now in self-quarantine and will be interviewed by the Health Department and tested.

Consistent with our commitment to ensure the health and safety of our community, we are closing school at least for today to do enhanced cleaning and disinfecting of our entire facility. Accordingly, to allow us to reach this baseline, no one should come on campus while we clean. All classes, exams, and activities today are cancelled. Campus, including the Library, will not be open for study or meetings. Staff who can work from home should do so. To those ends, all staff should consult with their supervisors. We will let you know about tomorrow as soon as possible.

While we await further guidance from health authorities, we remind you to be vigilant about observing all health and safety protocols outlined in our previous communications. We will provide you with all relevant updates when available, and until then, you are asked to remain calm, continue to wash hands thoroughly, avoid sick people, and if you feel sick, stay home and contact a doctor as needed. Review the CDC’s full prevention guidance.

Updated at 8:30 a.m.
Please note these updates in response to questions from our community and following conversations with the Health Department:

  • We are cleaning out of an abundance of caution and were not directed to do so by health officials. No one on campus has been diagnosed with COVID-19.
  • The Health Department advises that New Yorkers should continue to go about their daily routines. Accordingly, no one needs to self-isolate simply because they were on campus. Students should attend their off-campus internships and externships today.

Updated at 4:00 p.m.
Please find our latest response measures and next steps:

  • We are continuing our thorough cleaning and disinfecting of campus, out of an abundance of caution, and we remain in contact with the Health Department.
  • At this time, we do not yet have updates on testing results. We do not anticipate receiving updates before our start time tomorrow.
  • Accordingly, campus, including the Library, will remain closed, and regular classes and activities are cancelled for tomorrow, March 5.
  • Some faculty are electing to offer small classes or hold client/small-group meetings off campus and will contact their students directly about arrangements. Students should continue to attend their internships and externships.
  • Spring break begins Friday afternoon. There are no regular classes scheduled for Friday, March 6, and campus will remain closed that day to allow for any final cleaning steps. Any mid-term exams to be held before spring break will now be held after spring break.

Cardozo Law School, March 4th Update on COVID-19- From Dean Melanie Leslie:

To the Cardozo Community:
Yesterday, I wrote to you to about the news that a Manhattan attorney had tested positive for the COVID-19 virus, and that his son, an undergraduate YU student on the Wilf Campus in Washington Heights, was being tested. We have learned this morning that the student from the Washington Heights campus has tested positive. Health officials and the YU administration are on the Washington Heights campus handling the situation. We will keep you updated.

As for Cardozo: the Cardozo student we told you about yesterday -- who is staying home -- continues to have no symptoms.

Cardozo will remain open, as advised by the NYC Department of Health. Please continue to follow guidelines about washing hands and staying home if you are sick.  We are continuing to record all classes. Please feel free to contact Dean of Students Jennifer Kim with any concerns.

For complete TaxProf Blog coverage of the coronavirus, see here.

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