Georgia Tech’s faculty isn’t happy that students won’t be required to wear masks on campus

Georgia Tech students won’t have to wear a mask on campus. Scott Cunningham/Getty Images
  • Georgia Tech has issued it’s reopening plan for next semester and it doesn’t require face masks.
  • More than 850 faculty members have signed a letter to administration.
  • The letter calls on the university to make face masks required everywhere on campus and provide large-scale Covid-19 testing, and tracing.
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Georgia Tech will not require students to wear masks when they return to campus this fall.

The university’s reopening plan has angered some faculty, who say it is not based on science and puts staff and students at risk.

“We are alarmed to see the Board of Regents and the University System of Georgia mandating procedures that do not follow science-based evidence, increase the health risks to faculty, students, and staff, and interfere with the nimble decision-making necessary to prepare and respond to Covid-19 infection risks,” a faculty letter sent to administrators said.

More than 850 people have signed the letter, which asks that the university make remote learning the “default mode of instruction for Fall 2020,” require face masks be worn by those on campus, and provide large scale coronavirus testing.

The letter also calls for timely contact tracing of new infections.

The university’s plan, “Tech moving forward,” says that there will be five delivery modes for the Fall 2020 semester, including limited in-person classes and a variety of “hybrid options.”

Everyone on campus will be “strongly encouraged” to wear a cloth facemask, the plan says. A face covering will be required for employees who can’t properly socially distance, but not students.

As of Monday, there were 95,916 confirmed cases of coronavirus in Georgia.

Georgia is one of more than 30 states that have not mandated people to wear face masks in public, according to CNN.

Seth Marder, a professor of chemistry, materials science and engineering at Georgia Tech, told CNN that not mandating masks is “irresponsible and puts the Georgia Tech community at significant health risk.”