Appalachian State University will delay the return to campus for students.

A statement posted Friday on the Chancellors website indicated the decision comes as COVID-19 case numbers continue to rise in Watauga.

Classes will begin on January 19 as scheduled but will meet online until February 1.

Students with residence hall contracts will receive a message from University Housing with new move-in assignment dates, adjusted rental rates and new COVID-19 re-entry test deadlines on Monday.

Academic Affairs will follow up with specific guidance for students and faculty. University operations and staffing will resume as scheduled January 12.

App State will continue to maximize teleworking to the extent possible in order to reduce opportunities for exposure. Staff who need to be on campus to perform all or part of their work will continue to do so.

The university has an agreement in place with AppHealthCare to serve as a distribution site for vaccines for students, faculty and staff, but does not have a vaccination timeline to share at this time.