WARWICK, R.I. (WPRI) — As COVID-19 cases continue to rise, the Community College of Rhode Island (CCRI) and Rhode Island College (RIC) will both start the spring semester with remote learning.

In-person classes at CCRI that were scheduled to start the week of Jan. 18 will begin online with an expected return to in-person classes on Feb. 14, CCRI President Meghan Hughes said.

Hughes says the decision to move back to in-person classes could change based on public health guidance.

“We are a commuter school with our students and employees living and working in our community,” Hughes said. “Moving to remote-only instruction for the start of the spring semester helps to protect everyone’s health and safety, allows Rhode Island to move past the peak of omicron infections, and allows more time for our students and employees to protect themselves and their families from the virus by receiving the booster shot.”

RIC also said they will be starting their spring semester remotely from Jan. 18 through Feb. 7.

At CCRI it is also required for all employees and students, who are eligible, to receive a booster shot for the start of the spring semester. To be eligible you must be six months beyond the second dose of Moderna, five months beyond the second dose of Pfizer, or two months beyond a single J&J dose.

Any employee or student who has received their full series of vaccination, but not yet eligible to receive the booster, must fulfill this requirement within 30 days of eligibility.

RIC is also requiring all faculty, staff and students to get their booster shot by Jan. 18, or when first eligible, unless otherwise exempt.

Other colleges requiring booster shots include the University of Rhode Island, Providence CollegeBrown UniversityJohnson & Wales UniversityRoger Williams UniversitySalve Regina University and the Rhode Island School of Design.

As of Thursday, all unvaccinated CCRI students, employees, and visitors must show proof of a negative rapid COVID test taken within 24 hours of coming to campus.

“We will continue to monitor the public health situation and will provide additional updates in the coming days,” Hughes said.

At RIC, all students are required to provide a negative COVID test within 72 hours of their first date on campus, regardless of vaccination or booster shots.

Masks are required at both colleges.