July 14, 2020
Dear Curtis Community,
I am following up after Dean Bryan’s e-mail of July 9 to inform you of Curtis’s plans for the Fall 2020 semester, in light of the ongoing impacts of COVID-19. When our campus closed in March, we all hoped to see a speedy conclusion to the pandemic. Unfortunately infection and transmission rates have not declined as quickly as we hoped. In fact, in many areas of the United States and around the world, those rates have increased significantly in recent weeks.
After careful consideration and months of planning, including discussions with members of our Curtis community and local health officials, we have determined that Curtis will begin the 2020–21 academic year with an online fall semester.
When we first closed the campus in March, we did so in order to protect the health and safety of our students, faculty, staff, parents, alumni, and patrons. The same safety-first mindset has guided this most recent decision. Our Curtis community is very small and tight knit, built on a foundation of relationships. This is one of many unique traits that make the Curtis Institute of Music a conservatory like no other. In thinking through a return to on-campus activities, we knew that we would not be able to preserve the unique features that make Curtis such a vital learning environment while still maintaining the necessary in-person health and safety protocols.
We have a created a set of FAQs to address questions that you likely have. We understand that we may not have covered all your concerns. We will expand, update, and add to these FAQs as we learn what additional questions you have and as more information becomes available. I encourage you to check the page frequently for updates.
I know that this news about our fall semester is painful for us all. But given the tremendous uncertainty that still surrounds the coronavirus situation and given our commitment to protect the health and well-being of Curtis and the surrounding communities, it is the responsible and appropriate decision to make.
Please stay healthy and safe.
President and CEO