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Current Policies and Status

Based on Santa Clara and San Mateo County orders and CDC guidance, face coverings are required indoors for all individuals regardless of COVID-19 vaccination status, at crowded outdoor events where physical distancing is difficult, and when using public transportation, carts and other university vehicles occupied by more than one person. Stanford also strongly recommends masking outdoors in crowded settings when 6 feet of distance from others cannot consistently be maintained.

Health Check to self-report health status is required for employees and postdocs working in-person at a Stanford facility. Daily Health Check submissions are not required for faculty, staff and postdoctoral scholars coming to campus who are fully vaccinated for COVID-19 (documentation uploaded on Health Check) or fully vaccinated students on campus (documentation on the Vaden Health Portal) unless they become symptomatic, have a positive COVID test or are exposed to household members who have tested positive.  Training on COVID hygiene is required before returning to work at a campus location for the first time.

Fully vaccinated faculty, staff, postdocs, and graduate students are permitted to travel domestically and internationally. Unvaccinated persons who wish to travel internationally must first receive a travel exception from the university. Such permission is unlikely to be granted for unvaccinated international travelers during Fall 2021. Regardless of vaccination status, individuals must comply with the university’s guidance for returning to campus following personal or university-sponsored international travel, and unvaccinated travelers may not return to unrestricted campus access until they complete a negative Covid-19 PCR test taken at least 5 days after returning to California.

In compliance with a federal order, all Stanford faculty, staff and postdoctoral scholars, including those working remotely in the United States, and applicable subcontractors will be required to be fully vaccinated for COVID-19 and upload documentation on Health Check by Jan. 4, 2022, unless they have a medical or religious accommodation.

Students also are required to be vaccinated unless they have a medical or religious exemption. In addition, students are strongly encouraged to obtain a vaccine booster, if eligible, prior to returning to campus for the winter quarter. And, all eligible students will be required to provide documentation of a booster, unless they have a medical or religious exemption, by Jan. 31, 2022. Read more here.

COVID-19 vaccines are being administered by health care providers to eligible individuals based on criteria set by public health authorities. For the most current information, visit the Vaccinations page.

Classes will begin online for the first two weeks of the winter quarter before moving to in-person instruction on Jan. 18, 2022. Students are welcome to return to campus on-time from the winter break and do not need to change their travel plans. Other university operations will continue. Read more hereTeaching Commons and Teach Anywhere offer resources for instructors.

On-campus housing is offered this fall for students at all levels.  Dining halls offer indoor dining at reduced capacity, with Clean Dining protocols, as well as to-go meals.

Testing is required for all students, faculty, staff and postdoctoral scholars, regardless of vaccination status.

All students living on campus, living in university provided off-campus student housing or coming to campus are required to test weekly, regardless of vaccination status. Test twice during your first week back on campus following the winter break.

Effective Sept. 20regular surveillance testing is required as follows:

  • Fully vaccinated faculty, staff and postdoctoral scholars: once a week. Test twice during your first week back on campus following the winter break.
  • Unvaccinated faculty, staff, postdoctoral scholars: (a) twice weekly for those working on-site four or more days per week or (b) once weekly for those on-site three days or fewer per week. This includes those who have not indicated their vaccination status on Health Check or cannot be vaccinated.

Dashboards provide aggregated results for the Stanford community. See the Testing page for more information.

Gathering size and events policy: Currently, there are no limits on the size of non-student gatherings on campus, with the exception of mega-events above 5,000 people indoors and 10,000 people outdoors. Events and gatherings of greater than 500 individuals require registration. Please email for more information, and visit Health Alerts for the latest event and gatherings guidance. Effective Oct. 8, indoor student parties are permitted, provided they follow university and public health guidelines.

Stanford Athletics has provided a carefully staged return, based on each team’s situation. Select athletic venues are now accessible for spectators beyond families and friends of participating student-athletes.

Exercise outdoors is encouraged, subject to physical distancing. Pool reservations and other recreational offerings are available for those approved to be on-site.

Visitors and the Stanford community are welcome to outdoor areas of both Redwood City and Palo Alto campuses. Public events, performances and exhibitions are occurring in person at limited capacity. Certain essential visitors (including spouses/partners and minor dependents) are allowed in student residences. Visitors for academic, business, or research purposes  must be hosted by a department or unit. New appointments of visitors, including visiting scholars, visiting postdocs, visiting student researchers and others, are restricted.