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University of Minnesota announces plan to return students to campuses

MINNEAPOLIS — The University of Minnesota on Tuesday announced a plan for students to return to three of its campuses after the school’s decision to delay move-ins and in-person classes.

According to the plan, sent via email to students, faculty and staff from University President Joan Gabel, students will be able to move into dormitories on Sept. 9 at the Duluth campus, Sept. 15 at the Twin Cities campus and Sept. 18 at the Rochester campus. The plan comes after a decision last week by the university’s Board of Regents to delay residence hall move-ins and the start of most in-person classes at the three campuses for two weeks.

The plan outlines four steps that become increasingly less restrictive over time, including limited on-campus activities and movement, limited access to campus facilities, and lifting curfews in later steps.

All four steps emphasize students wearing masks, social distancing and avoiding large gatherings.

The Minnesota Department of Health reported 502 new coronavirus cases and six deaths on Tuesday, bringing the state to 76,355 total cases and 1,823 deaths statewide since the beginning of the pandemic. Hospitalizations dipped below 300 for the first time since Aug. 21, though five more patients were in intensive care than Monday.