What the COVID-19 stay-at-home order means for campus operations 

Wednesday, April 7, 2021

This message was originally sent to students and employees by Feridun Hamdullahpur, president and vice-chancellor.


  • The Region of Waterloo will be under a provincial stay-at-home order effective April 8, 2021 for a period of 28 days, which affects teaching, research and other operations on campus.  
  • Changes under the previously announced provincial shutdown will remain in effect during the stay-at-home order, including any changes to in-person classes or research activities. 
  • Please continue to do your part and don’t travel outside the region.  

The provincial government has announced a new stay-at-home order effective April 8, 2021 lasting for a period of 28 days.  

The stay-at-home order restrictions will be very similar to the restrictions currently in place under the previously announced provincial shutdown:

  • In-person course activity  can only continue for subject matter or instruction that requires that it be taught in-person, such as clinical or hands-on training, with a limit of 10 students per section, with some exemptions in health care disciplines.  
    • Faculty associate deans have been contingency planning for the remaining class days of the winter term and have identified courses that will continue in person or remotely during a lockdown. 

    • Students whose classes have been moved online under the shutdown will see their classes remain online – any other changes will be communicated to students by faculty as soon as possible. 

  • Details on what is and is not permitted as it relates to Research activities currently remains the same as under the previously announced shutdown order, details can be found here.
  • Student residences remain open as normal with additional security and shared space safety measures already in place due to the ongoing outbreak.
  • All food services  are take-out and/or delivery only. Dine-in seating is not permitted.  
  • Athletics facilities are closed.  
  • Print + Retail Solutions  will continue to operate W Store with online ordering and curbside pick up .
  • Libraries will be open for curbside delivery and pick-up.  Visitors may be permitted to enter libraries for contactless drop-off and pick-up, or similar services. Most research-related services may continue. Study spaces within the Davis Centre library will be closed temporarily.   
  • General office activity is limited to work that must occur on campus.  Any work that can occur remotely should be done from home. Leaders and department heads will need to communicate their areas’ specific priorities and plans.   
  • At this time, the stay-at-home order does not impact the arrival of international students  and does not change any of the federal or provincial quarantine requirements or the provincial COVID-19 testing requirement.  

Please continue to do your part and don’t travel outside the region. If you have to travel and are returning to Waterloo from another province, please make a plan to self-isolate before re-integrating with housemates or other community members. Remember that students are not permitted to quarantine in residence.  

Please continue to follow all University  safety protocols. As we approach a period of heightened uncertainty, it is also important to take care of yourselves and each other.   Help is available if you need it.  

Thank you for your perseverance, patience, and support as we all do our part to stop the spread.