Berklee College of Music Cancels Classes Because Of Covid Surge

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Updated at 5:54 p.m.

BOSTON (WBZ NewsRadio) – With less than a week before the school was about to break for the Thanksgiving holiday, students at one college in Boston parted ways sooner.

Berklee College of Music canceled class on Thursday because of an uptick in positive Covid-19 cases among students. Erica Muhl, president of Berklee, said the school believes the rise in cases has resulted from students hosting off-campus gatherings. The school said they are working with faculty to move to remote instruction, set to begin on Friday.

“This mode of instruction will be in effect through Tuesday, November 23,” Berklee wrote on its website. “Essential campus operations will remain open under current masking protocols, including residence halls and dining facilities. Administrative offices will remain in operation, and student appointments with staff and faculty can occur remotely during this time.”

The day before, Muhl sent a letter to the community detailing the administration’s decision.

“While our positivity rate is still well below the current rate in Boston and the state of Massachusetts, out of an abundance of caution we are taking additional steps to protect our community over the coming days, including minimizing in-person campus activities,” Muhl wrote. "Berklee’s vaccination rate is currently 96.9%, and strict safety protocols remain in place across our campus."

This action comes as Massachusetts has seen an overall climb in Covid-19 cases. The state confirmed 3,196 new cases of the virus on Thursday and the 7-day average positivity rate was 3.04%. Berklee also canceled all in-person performances, rehearsals, and other group events that were scheduled through November 22.

“We understand this will be disappointing for those of you involved in these events, and we will work with event and performance organizers to identify possible options for re-scheduling,” Muhl continued.

The school plans on returning to in-person learning on Monday, November 29.

CORRECTION 10:40 11/10/2021: An earlier version of this article stated the vaccination rate at Berklee was 92.2 percent. The actual vaccination rate for the school is 96.9 percent.

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