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14 Greek houses on IU's Bloomington campus are under quarantine

Nearly 1,000 students were told to stay home and out of class for 14 days.

BLOOMINGTON, Ind. — One week into the fall semester at Indiana University-Bloomington, 14 Greek houses are already under quarantine.     

University administrators say nearly 1,000 students were told to stay home and out of class for 14 days. 

"The increase we're seeing in the Greek houses is driving a significant amount of that overall increase. That's enough for us to get concerned and focus our attention there," said Dr. Aaron Carroll, IU Director of Testing and Surveillance.

Activities by all of the fraternities and sororities came to a halt.

"I think it's a very unfortunate situation right now. I think that everyone is really struggling with being back on campus, being back at the university and thinking about what COVID means and what precautions we need to be taking right now," said student Tori Burkhart.   

Administrators have been monitoring IU's dashboard to detect the spread of the virus on all nine campuses. That dashboard now includes mitigation testing, which helps identify those who are asymptomatic or those who have no symptoms but are still infectious.     

On Monday, the positivity rate among Greek houses at Bloomington was 8.1 percent of students tested, while the residence halls had a positivity rate of 1.63 percent.

So what happens now that students are quarantined? Administrators say those students will work remotely. Instructors will also work with students individually to ensure they can complete their assignments.

The university has hired contact tracers to meet with anyone at IU who may have been exposed to the virus.

"This is our riskiest time, when people are arriving from off-campus. They are all starting to congregate together and they haven't been for some period of time," said Carroll.

Administrators said the new mitigation testing will be randomized for all students, faculty and staff. 

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