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Classroom Guidance

The Student Code of Conduct educates students about appropriate behavior and fosters a community in which academic success can occur. The following guidance for faculty and staff for mask enforcement apply to ALL WKU students, including the satellite campuses:

The examples of prescribed conduct expectations is set forth in this code of conduct, however are illustrative and should not be read as comprehensive. Nor, however, should this be interpreted to cover any general category of behavior not mentioned herein unless that conduct is otherwise prohibited by law.

Classroom guidance for instructors on mask enforcement:

Compliance with the face-covering protocol is expected. Our first preference is to address this through a conversation and a social enforcement approach to address the behavior, however university community members who repeatedly disregard this expectation will be held responsible for their actions.

Students who fail to comply will be referred to the Office of Student Conduct.

 *Syllabus statement regarding classroom mask requirements:

Out of respect for the health and safety of the WKU community and in adherence with the CDC guidelines, the University requires that a cloth or paper face mask that covers both the nose and mouth must be worn at all times when in public areas within all buildings. Students must properly wear masks while in class regardless of the room size or the nature of the classroom activities.  Students who fail to wear a face mask as required will be in violation of the WKU Student Code of Conduct and will be asked to comply or will face disciplinary action, including possible dismissal from the University.  Accommodations to masks must be determined by the Student Accessibility Resource Center and documented before a student may attend class. 

As we return to the classroom, new expectations are in place to protect the safety of students, faculty, staff and other members of the WKU community. We will need to follow the expectations outlined in the Big Red Restart Plan: https://www.wku.edu/restart/documents/big-red-restart-plan-draft-2.pdf

The University has a communication campaign to inform students of University requirements and their responsibilities (https://www.wku.edu/healthyonthehill/).

*Instructors should affirmatively remind students to follow new classroom requirements, such as properly wearing a mask and physical distancing.  Faculty should make clear that that participating in the class will require use of a face covering.

To encourage a consistent message and adherence to the new policy, you are encouraged to include a statement of the University’s requirements, including masking and physical distancing, in the class syllabus. (*See approved syllabus statement above.)

Faculty may also consider including adherence to classroom safety requirements as part of the overall grade in the course. For instance, if a student refuses to comply with the mask policy and necessitates a class cancellation, this could impact course grades. We would recommend that you orally review classroom requirements at the start of class to provide a general reminder for the entire class and follow-up with a signature of compliance and understanding.

 The classroom management issues are the same as any other conflict management in a classroom. Existing codes of conduct for students should be followed:


Contumacy/Refusal to Comply.  Actions involving insubordination, refusal to comply with directions, requests, or orders of a University official, failure to comply with outcomes imposed if found in violation of the Code of Student Conduct.

Disrupting the Academic Process or Student Conduct Process. Interference or disruptive activity or behavior that impedes, impairs or obstructs teaching, research, administration, or disciplinary procedures, or other University missions, processes, functions, or other authorized activities including its public service function of other authorized activities on University premises or which inhibits full exercise of rights by others.

 Unruly Conduct. Disorderly, abusive, lewd, or acts that result in physical altercation, fighting and indecent or obscene conduct that cause physical injury or threaten others, or interferes with any individual’s rightful act. This responsibility also applies to events sponsored and supervised by recognized student organizations, on or off campus.

Violation of General Rules and Regulations. Violation of any University policy, guideline, campus rule or regulation of conduct, which adversely affects the student’s suitability as a member of the University community. 

(Please see https://www.wku.edu/housing/policies/hilltopics.php for more information.)


Source: Montana University

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 Last Modified 8/17/20