Some UNC-CH classes could go virtual until Feb. 17 after crowd floods Franklin Street

CHAPEL HILL, N.C. (WTVD) -- Some UNC-Chapel Hill classes have the option to go virtual for nearly two weeks after university officials received hundreds of complaints following Saturday night's crowd that rushed Franklin Street.

The timing of last night's crowd flooding Franklin Street fell the weekend before students returned for in-person learning for the spring semester.

"Student Affairs has already received hundreds of Student Conduct complaints. Those leads will be evaluated and students found to have violated our COVID-19 Community Standards will be subject to developmental or disciplinary action," Chancellor Kevin Guskiewicz and Provost Bob Blouin wrote in a joint statement on Sunday.

RELATED: UNC fans defy COVID-19 restrictions by storming Franklin Street after win over Duke
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While it may have been all fun and games for some, the UNC Chancellor says there will be an investigation in coordination with local authorities to "pursue consequences."

In the past day, the two university leaders said that they consulted with deans of the university as well as school representatives to remain 'flexible in [their] modes of instruction.

The school stressed that in-person instruction will continue on Monday, as planned; however, due to the concern, the university will allow faculty to teach virtually and return to in-person learning on Feb. 17, following wellness days on Feb. 15-16.

Guskiewicz and Blouin reassured its community that the campus is safe to return to citing confirmation from the Orange County Health Department and the university's infectious disease and public health experts.

Following the rushing of Franklin Street, Guskiewicz promised an investigation in coordination with local authorities to 'pursue consequences.'

ABC11 learned that consequences could include removal or dismissal from the university and disenrollment in in-person classes.

As of Friday, February 5, the UNC coronavirus dashboard reports 610 total COVID-19 cases associated with the university.

Students react to crowds rushing Franklin Street

There are mixed reactions from those on UNC-Chapel Hill's campus as the dust settles from Saturday night's commotion on Franklin Street.

"I think it's very irresponsible, we're still in a pandemic," said Shaher-Issa, a senior at the university. "My main concern is that the numbers will go back up."

Some community members in the area also wishing that there were more precautions and enforcement in place from local authorities.

"I wish the town and university would have foreseen that and would have been a little bit more prepared," said Gina Rousset.

Sunday is the last day for students to move in before the start of the new semester which will have in-person learning. Students signed an agreement saying that they would adhere to community standards and prevent the spread of COVID-19 as much as they can.
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