Note: FMG recommends you discuss your reopening plan with your Insurance Carrier, Headquarters, Campus Greek Life Office & Residence Life, and a Real Estate Attorney. Additionally, involve your volunteer boards, parents and undergraduates in developing the plan that fits your situation.
- Understand the severity of the COVID-19 situation and its impact on your campus and chapter. Do your homework.
- Develop your goals with a focus on current priorities
– safety of your members, volunteers, guests, and staff; budget; recruitment; retention of members; onboarding of new members/member education; career preparation & networking; and virtual services.
Survey your members to identify if they plan to be back on-campus, to live in the house, and/or to participate in meals. Use this to develop your budget.
- Ensure you have a quality website in place with links to all social media. Additionally, ensure that you have current contact information for all undergraduates and parents, as well as alumni/ae if possible.
- Develop an effective communication and crisis- management plan. It needs to be consistent, transparent, timely and clear. It needs to be delivered through multi platforms (email, social media, poster, text, etc.). Keep your alumni/ae, undergraduates, parents, staff and volunteers informed often.
- Develop your marketing/recruitment plan and ensure you are building your new member prospect list.
- If you are in a position to move to single person rooms (and ideally one person per bathroom) for the upcoming school year, seriously consider it. If not, do your best to look at six foot safe spacing and daily cleaning, as well as creating physical barriers where possible.
- Decide if you will require the taking of temperatures of all members, guests, volunteers and staff before move-in or when visiting the house (or other testing available).
- Consider developing a room/suite as a quarantine area for sick members if the campus does not have a place for them. See CDC guidelines for cleaning, safety, and care giving. Have this room/suite stocked with all the necessary items.
- Email all members and parents discussing all the possibilities for the fall (communicate often). This should include in-house member leases with rules, as well as out of house member agreements with rules. Additionally, you should have a member agreement addendum focused on COVID-19 safety and they should sign it. Have your attorney review.
- Ensure all of your social media is filled with posts that represent the brand you are looking to promote.
- Plan for recruitment as normal, deferred recruitment until late fall or the spring, and no in-person recruitment for the year.
- Ask your members, alumni/ae and parents to send you contact information for potential new members. Promote this via email, social media and text.
- Ensure that you are holding Zoom or other online informational interviews on a weekly basis for the summer.
- Consider the purchasing of air filtering system and how you can increase ventilation rates.
- Complete enhanced cleaning in all common areas and rooms as the budget allows. Additionally, inspect and clean all HVAC filters and exhaust systems. See CDC guidelines.
- Develop signage and a frequent messaging plan about proper hygiene and CDC guidelines (verbal, emails, video, posters, text, etc.). Place signage at entrances and inside all common areas, including bathrooms and laundry rooms. Additionally, contact information for Campus Health, Counseling Services, and the nearest Hospital should be posted.
- Develop a written protocol when members, residents or guests have confirmed COVID-19. Have approved by the board, Greek Life Office and attorney.
- Consider closing common rooms that are not a necessity.
- Consider asking the chapter to avoid all activities and sports that do not allow for six feet spacing or touching items that others are touching.
- Develop a cleaning/safety plan with all of your vendors (food, custodial, & all other sub-contractors).
- Remind members and their parents to contact the members healthcare providers to have extra necessary medications for the school year.
- Purchase all the cleaning and safety supplies you need for your members, volunteers, guests, staff and vendors. Have enough of a supply for at least six months.
- Develop a plan in to track your members whereabouts within reason
so you can trace who they were in contact with if at all possible. If this is a legal concern, consider at least having some form of testing in place each time your members attend larger gatherings, go home, go to spring break, etc., (this may be difficult).
- Replace as you can all shared appliances with single use or no touch options as the budget allows.
- Identify frequently touched areas (doors, cabinets, locks, etc.) and investigate options to implement no/reduced touch options such as door removal, card access, foot-operated door pulls/pedals, or sensor-triggered doors.
- Remove high-touch items such as magazines, common pens, etc.
- Develop a plan to address isolation and mental health. This should include Zoom like meetings for educational programs, alumni/ae & parent speakers on various career fields, and simply to talk and have fun.
- Require that your meal service provider/chef have a detailed plan that is approved by your Board.
- Prepare your dining room for safe spacing. You might also consider shifts for eating or picking up food and taking it to rooms.
- Share with members, staff and volunteers with medical conditions such as asthma, diabetes, immunosuppressive drug therapy, including chronic systemic corticosteroid treatment, heart disease, HIV, and morbid obesity they are at high risk for COVID-19 illness and complications. They and you should consider whether their high risk suggests they should not live-in or come by your facility during this upcoming school year until CDC protocols suggests it is ok.
- Prepare the chapter that meetings and recruitment should occur via Zoom or something similar until a cure is found.
- Prepare the chapter to follow restriction on events and social gatherings as per current physical distancing guidelines by the Federal Government, State, City, Headquarters and the University.
- Train all staff, volunteers, and officers on CDC guidelines
- Enhanced cleaning in all common areas and high touch areas right before move-in as budget allows. Custodial workers should be provided appropriate PPE and training consistent with their duties. See CDC guidelines.
- Ensure signage is in place and frequent messaging about proper hygiene and CDC guidelines (verbal, emails, video, posters, text, etc.) occurs weekly to bi-weekly.
- Remind all members, staff, volunteers, and officers on CDC guidelines. Encourage them to protect themselves and others.
- Take temperatures of all members, guests, volunteers and staff before move-in or when visiting the house (or other testing available).
- Ensure everyone knows the signs and symptoms of COVID-19 and what to do. Additionally, know your policy when someone does come down with COVID-19.
- Ensure that the Advisory Board, House Corporation Board and Undergraduate Officers are in frequent contact with each other.
- Require personal face coverings for all members, staff and guests (at least when in common areas).
- Provide hand sanitizer and face coverings for all members, guests, staff and volunteers. Monitor and secure inventories of PPE, hand sanitizer, wipes, cleaning products, and hand soap.
- Follow restriction on events and social gatherings as per current physical distancing guidelines by the Federal Government, State, City, Headquarters and the University.
- Restriction on building access by non-residents, and when they are allowed, ensure a protocol is followed.
- Remind members, staff and volunteers with medical conditions such as asthma, diabetes, immunosuppressive drug therapy, including chronic systemic corticosteroid treatment, heart disease, HIV, and morbid obesity they are at high risk for COVID-19 illness and complications. They and you should consider whether their high risk suggests they should not live- in or come by your facility during this upcoming school year.
- Ensure the plan to address isolation and mental health has begun. This should include Zoom like meetings for educational programs, alumni/parent speakers on various career fields, and simply to talk and have fun.
- Ensure chapter meetings and recruitment are occurring via Zoom or something similar until the campus says it is safe.
- Ensure your dining room and all other common areas is taking into account safe spacing. You might also consider shifts for eating or picking up food and taking it to rooms.
- Ensure that your meal service provider/chef is following a detailed plan that was approved by your Board.
- Ensure high-touch items such as magazines, common pens, and other items are removed.
- Have a plan in place to track your members whereabouts so you can trace who they were in contact with if at all possible. If this is a legal concern, consider at least having some form of testing in place each time your members attend larger gatherings, go home, go to spring break, etc., (this may be difficult).
Remember, we are family, and together we will get through this. We will be safer and stronger organizations that provide value to our alumni/ae, undergraduates, parents, headquarters and university. We will graduate members who are career-ready and committed to our chapters, headquarters and universities.