SJSU’s Response to State’s Intent to Eliminate Tiers for Blueprint to a Safer Economy

Sent: April 7, 2021
From: President Mary A. Papazian

SJSU campus community,

Yesterday, April 6, the State of California announced its intention to eliminate its four-tier color-coded tracking system on June 15. The retirement of the tiers is contingent on the state continuing to meet vaccination goals and hospitalizations remaining low.

Our campus leaders are reviewing what this proposed change would mean for our operations, as well as awaiting any further directives the Santa Clara County Public Health Department might provide. We will continue to update the campus community as we learn more, and we will move forward with our plan to return some of our employees to campus gradually beginning July 1, 2021, in preparation for fall semester. 

As a campus, we will continue to prioritize the health and safety of our students, faculty and staff first. Our plan envisions the Fall 2021 academic year as a transition semester from a period of pandemic-COVID to one of endemic-COVID. This means that while we will have a much greater campus presence in the fall semester, we will not be fully repopulated. We continue to solidify our course schedules and general campus repopulation plans, providing options across modalities that continue to best meet students where they are. 

I want to emphasize that our repopulation process will not happen overnight; we will gradually and thoughtfully move towards pre-pandemic levels of student, faculty and staff presence on campus. Currently, managers from all areas of campus are meeting with University Personnel (UP), Facilities Development and Operations (FD&O) and Environmental Health and Safety (EH&S) to develop area specific repopulation plans. These plans are guided by two primary principles: our mission to serve our students and community and the health and safety of our campus community. Plans will be approved by UP, FD&O and EH&S, and will be shared with departments by June, if not sooner. 

I am proud of our students, faculty and staff, essential healthcare workers, university housing, facilities personnel, and all of us who have helped keep the campus safe and secure this past year. As a result, I am confident we can gradually repopulate our campus together in a safe and meaningful manner. 

Your continued commitment to our mission to educate and serve our students as well as to the health and safety of your fellow Spartans is what will allow us to repopulate our campus safely and effectively.


Dr. Mary A. Papazian