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Best Practices Essentials

Fraternity, Sorority and Cooperative Living - Spring 2021 Updates

Updated: January 21, 2021 - View the new Surveillance Testing information

Table of Contents:

I. Focused Essentials

The Protect Purdue Health Center (“PPHC”) and the Purdue University personnel responsible for implementing safe living and learning protocols on campus, have prepared the following list of Focused Essentials.

The list is based upon the most current scientific and medical guidance as well as the PPHC’s experience in assisting Fraternity, Sorority and Cooperative Living (“FSCL”) residences navigate multiple COVID-19 outbreaks throughout the fall 2020 semester.

PPHC believes the Focused Essentials give FSCL residences and each of their members the greatest chance to avoid large-scale quarantine situations or even more significant public health responses from the Tippecanoe County Health Department in the spring semester.

While the responsibility for implementing any or all of the Focused Essentials is ultimately left to the governance of each FSCL residence, we sincerely hope that each FSCL residence mandates these health and safety measures.

PPHC is very willing to connect any FSCL residence with the appropriate subject matter experts to answer any specific questions regarding implementation of the Focused Essentials. Contact them at 765-496-4636.

  1. Continue to use the FSCL Protect Purdue Best Practices for Congregate Living -
  2. No one should be using bathroom sinks next to one another simultaneously.
  3. Eating is a high risk activity, due to the need for mask removal. No one should be eating within 6 feet distance and, especially, not directly across from someone.
  4. To avoid exposure from COVID-19 community spread, consider releasing students from housing contracts that are enrolled in academic programs that necessitate significant in-person requirements.
    Eg: Nursing Clinicals.
  5. Unmasked social gatherings in personal rooms were extremely problematic during the fall semester and present a greater challenge during the cold winter months. Chapter/House authored guest policies that allow 1 guest per member should be discontinued immediately and replaced by a policy and practice that upholds the spirit of the Protect Purdue Pledge and Guidelines. Examples include, but are not limited to, designating 1 or 2 pre-determined guests per member for the entire semester with no more than 50% of the pre-determined guest list present in the house at any given time. Thus, limiting guests, primarily, to significant others, family and close friends.
  6. Use the content under each Best Practice section as an element in your house policy statements with compliance as a condition for residing in the house.
  7. Develop clear, actionable consequences for Best Practices and Protect Purdue non-compliance within each housing unit.
  8. Specific guidance is provided for the following:
    1. Kitchen & Meal Preparation
    2. Meal Service and Dining
    3. Laundry Rooms
    4. Shared Bathrooms
    5. Sleeping Spaces
    6. Gathering Spaces/Common Spaces (living rooms, game rooms, chapter rooms)
    7. Activities – Must follow Spring 2021 events guidelines:
    8. Healthy Practices & Recommendations – cold weather impact
      1. Emphasize fresh air ventilation (crack windows open)
      2. Work with house corporation boards and/or maintenance contracts to implement rigorous HVAC filter changing schedule (consider high grade residential HVAC filter options) & set HVAC fan to “always on”
      3. If using radiant heat (radiators), add portable room air purifiers
      4. Create an outdoor environment to encourage/draw people outside (space for gathering, use of outdoor space heaters, increased seating – properly spaced/distanced)

II. Mandatory Requirements

In addition to the above Focused Essentials, which are the FSCL residence’s responsibility to review and enact, the University is requiring each FSCL residence to implement the following student organization and house policies related to COVID-19 mitigation. Whenever this list of Requirements (or other Protect Purdue Expectations) conflicts with general guest and/or organizational activities policies, these rules must be followed.

  1. All live-in members must check-in at University check point(s) prior to re-occupying FSCL houses for the spring semester. Specific details related to location, time and process will be distributed prior to winter recess.
  2. All live-in members must complete an approved COVID-19 PCR (or antigen if requested) test prior to returning to the house for move-in. Test must be dated within 14 days prior to move-in and with a negative result on record with PPHC.
  3. Masks must be worn throughout the housing unit, unless in your private room, eating or in the bathroom. If guests are present in your private room, masks must be worn at all times.
  4. No positive COVID-19 cases are allowed to isolate in the house (required relocation to PVil, home, or alternative home if able to relocate without using any public transportation)
  5. Those living in a fraternity, sorority or cooperative house that require only designated individuals to quarantine will require those designated persons to relocate to PVil, their home or other alternative home to complete their quarantine period. Students in quarantine may not attend class.
  6. If a housing unit is placed on “Q” (entire house quarantine), the individuals will complete the quarantine in the house or relocate to their home. Students in quarantine may not attend class.
  7. In-House Guests / In-Person Interaction
    1. Strict adherence to Protect Purdue guidelines
    2. If under “Q” – there should be NO guests (anyone that is not designated as an official resident of the house) coming into the house. All residents of the house should strictly adhere to PPHC quarantine guidance. There should be no interaction between those in the house and anyone living outside of the house.
    3. Enhanced Restrictions – Going forward, all in-person events and interactions between in-house and out of house members, potential new members, new members and non-members are prohibited. Potential escalation to the Tippecanoe County Health Department for additional review of the house for possible additional protective measures, including closure due to community infection risk.
  8. New member recruitment – it has been demonstrated that interactions between in-house FSCL members and the new member recruitment activities can be tied to an increase in Covid-19 positive cases among the University Residences
    1. If the FSCL community has an over-all COVID-19 positivity rate of < 2% and a specific house has 0% positives, in-person recruitment activities that adhere to the Purdue Pledge may occur
    2. All recruitment activities must be virtual unless meeting the criteria stated in 8 a. above.
  9. New Member education/initiation programs should be done virtually unless otherwise approved by SAO.
  10. FSCL leadership will participate in a monthly “Update or Status” call scheduled by the Office of Student Life.

III. Surveillance Testing

Guided by learnings from the fall, Purdue’s comprehensive surveillance testing program for the spring semester has been increased in a strategic, data-driven manner to include both targeted and random testing protocols for students and employees. Students in Fraternity, Sorority and Cooperative Life organizations testing program will now entail:

  • All current and new members of a Fraternity, Sorority or Cooperative organization, regardless of where they are living, will be tested during the week of January 18 and again the week of January 25.
  • Then, 50% of FSCL students will be tested weekly beginning the week of Feb. 1, such that the entire population is tested every two weeks.

For more information about the Spring 2021 Surveillance Testing Plan, visit Also learn more about how Purdue is monitoring the evolving COVID-19 situation.

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