As the number of coronavirus cases exploded across the University of Georgia’s Athens campus in late August, some faculty began asking department heads about shifting from in-person classes to an online curriculum.
After fielding several requests, one faculty chair emailed a dire warning to members of his department: the university would reject any official requests to switch to online learning. And if professors attempted to switch unofficially, the state university system was prepared to track them down.
“I’ve been advised that physical audits (by USG auditors) may take place that check to see that… the class is meeting the day/time/classroom that is listed in the instructional plan,” the chair wrote in an email obtained by The Daily Beast on the condition that the author not be identified. USG refers to University System of Georgia, the governing body of the state’s 26