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08/19/2020
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WorkScoop

Stanford's new virtual hangout is catching on

Though Stanford University's physical campus remains closed, a new online game with a social networking component is catching on among students and administrators. The game, called Club Penguin, borrows heavily from the once-popular but now discontinued Club Penguin. Players can design a virtual character, a dorm room and meet up with their friends on a virtual campus that includes 10 locations modeled after places on the real campus. The university is considering making it an official planning tool and other universities have expressed interest making the platform intercollegiate. Betsy Foresman reports.


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U. of Arizona turns to health data for reopening

Reopening campus for the fall semester is a trick decision for university administrators across the country. At the University of Arizona, the progressive reopening will involve a close watch over the data, Richard Carmona, director of UA’s campus reentry task force, told EdScoop. The university plans to bring about 5,000 students back to campus next week and then as many as 30,000 in the coming months, he said, but that could change if the data turns. “At any time we see any of the metrics that are going in the wrong direction, we can stop,” he said. Betsy has more.


Virtual classrooms crashed on Monday

Virtual classrooms for North Carolina’s K-12 schools crashed Monday morning, the state’s first day of school, after thousands of students attempted to log in at the same time. The outage of the state’s NCEdCloud service, a portal that connects students and teachers to learning management systems like Canvas and PowerSchool, appeared to affect districts statewide. The system's now back online, but state officials are investigating why the platform, which has 2 million registered users, suddenly failed. Ryan Johnston has more on StateScoop.


UNC isn't the only one walking back its reopening

Though hundreds of universities announced over the summer intentions to bring students back to campus, recent increases in the number of confirmed coronavirus cases in more than 20 states is forcing administrators to rethink their decisions. Just this week, the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill announced it would send students away from in-person instruction after more than 100 students tested positive for COVID-19. Brown University, the University of Pennsylvania, George Washington University, Dickinson College and others are also among those that have reversed course before the semester began. Other institutions, meanwhile, are staying the course. Betsy has the details.


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