Presidential COVID-19 Update: August 24, 2020

Monday, August 24, 2020


Over the weekend, I had reports of some students who are not complying with the directives issued to them by Lewis & Clark Public Health. Not adhering to these directives endangers the community and our ability as a college to remain open, so I want to reiterate the role of Lewis & Clark Public Health.

Cases of COVID-19 are managed by Lewis & Clark Public Health. They are the ones who:

  • Provide a directive for students who are COVID-19 positive to isolate;
  • Provide a directive for students who are close contacts of COVID-19 to quarantine;
  • Manage the case, and let students know when they can return to regular activities.

When Public Health calls, I’d encourage you to:

  • Answer when the health department calls;
  • Be polite and respectful;
  • Listen carefully to instructions;
  • Follow the quarantine or isolation directive.

This is how the health department contains the virus and protects the rest of our campus and the Helena community from further spread of the virus. If you need assistance while isolated or quarantined, contact Interim Dean of Students Judy Hay at 447-4530.  We have people who are able to help.

First and foremost, I ask that you remember that they have these guidelines in place to keep you and the community safe from further spread of COVID-19. As a reminder, a directive from Public Health has the force of law, and if you violate it, you can be fined. 

Carroll College is working closely with Public Health, but due to privacy laws regarding health information, there is information that Public Health cannot legally give the college and information that Public Health may not be able to give you. Therefore, it is imperative to:

  • Comply with all directives from Public Health;
  • Seek clarification from the Wellness Center (406) 447-5441 or wellnesscenter@carroll.edu, if you have questions.

Ultimately, Lewis & Clark Public Health has the authority to order Carroll College to move to remote learning or shut down the campus. If they determine that Carroll College students, faculty, and staff are not complying with their guidance, they are more likely to do that. None of us want that to happen.

Be a Saint, and help us. And be a Saint to those in isolation or quarantine. You can talk with them via FaceTime, or play a game virtually. You can call or leave gifts for students with Residence Life for delivery. Isolation and quarantine are hard but you can help make it better!

And, if you find yourself in quarantine or isolation, please know that we are listening and we are working to improve food service, provide more volunteers to offer additional support, and generally make this manageable for you. It is hard, but your sacrifice during this time protects the entire community.   Please know, I appreciate your efforts and dedication to the greater good of our community.   We can do this!  I have faith in each of you!


John E. Cech, Ph.D.