The situation and the policies outlined here are subject to change, so please return to this page for updates as we approach the start of the semester. Students will be given detailed information and instructions in their correspondence with Middlebury prior to departure and upon arrival in Spain.
The School in Spain is Running!
We are pleased to announce that we will run our programs in Spain during the fall 2021 semester. We can’t wait to welcome students abroad, and we’ll share more information with them as the program start date approaches.
Current Situation in Spain
For up-to-date information, please see the U.S. Embassy site.
A state of alarm in place until May 9th. New measures may be established after that date.
- We expect to offer the program at all our sites: Madrid, Getafe, Córdoba, and Logroño.
- Spanish regulations now call for social distancing of 1.5 meters, which means our classroom capacity in Madrid has decreased; therefore, all courses at the Sede prim will be hybrid, where students come to one class period per week in person and join the other class period remotely for each course.
- Our partner universities in Madrid, Getafe, Córdoba, and Logroño have also adopted their own hybrid models, both to promote student welfare and also to allow them to pivot to fully remote in case that is later warranted.
- Students may be required to arrive to Spain with a negative PCR test and quarantine/self-isolate the first week.
- The School in Spain staff will be available to support students (remotely) if students must quarantine.
- Program orientation will begin remotely with some in person activities, conditions permitting.
- We have limited student housing options. Students studying in Madrid/Getafe may live with either host families or a single room in a residence hall. This will limit exposure to roommates over whom the program has no control and allow for strict adherence to COVID-preventative measures (limiting room capacity and visitors, higher cleaning standards, etc.).
- Host families and residence hall options are limited in Córdoba/Logroño. For this reason, students studying in Córdoba/Logroño may choose to live in shared apartments, residence halls and host families.
- We will ask our collaborating families to agree to a minimum protocol by means of which, if a family member falls sick (or has been in contact with a sick person), they should self-isolate in a room and quarantine for 10-14 days.
- All students should have their own cleaning products for their individual use to wipe down their frequently touched surfaces daily (ex. doorknobs, light switches, phones, desk, night stand, etc.)
- If the student has their own bathroom, they will be responsible for cleaning their space.
- If a student shares a bathroom, each person should clean/disinfect after each use.
- If a student lives in a dorm style residence hall with a common bathroom for a group of rooms, the residence hall will clean. However, we recommend students wipe down services before and after use.
- The Middlebury Center in Madrid, the Sede Prim, will be reconfigured to allow for social distancing. Space capacity has been reduced, and we will indicate traffic flow within the center to avoid unintentional crowding.
- The library will be closed, and students will request library materials from staff.
- Students won’t be allowed to hang out at the Sede; they will go to class, do whatever they need to do, and leave.
- While staff will be cleaning throughout the day, students should also wipe down spaces and items they use.
- The Sede may open 1 hour later every day to avoid rush hour in public transportation.
- Students should always have their “COVID Kit” with them when they leave their homes: a bag/small case with at least 1 or 2 extra face covers (most should be changed every 4 hours), tissues, hand sanitizer and a water bottle (fountains are currently out of service).
- Establishments (bars, restaurants, museums, shops, etc.) have limited their capacity and hours they may open. For example, restaurants must limit the number of people per table.
- A curfew is in place until at least May. The time varies depending on the region but in general the time is 22:00 – 06:00. All individuals should be home during curfew. Those who do not comply with the curfew can be fined up to 600€ by the police. Any student that does not follow the curfew, or other measures in place, will be sanctioned by the program.
- When there are high numbers of contagion, the city or neighborhoods may “close down” and confined and all non-essential establishments (bars, restaurants, gyms, libraries, museums, theaters, etc.) are closed for an extended period of time.
- International travel is strongly discouraged and may be prohibited by the local government depending on the destination. There are requirements and restrictions regarding arrival in other EU countries as well as return to Spain. Students must inform program staff if they intend to travel overnight and students will be required to fill out a detailed questionnaire to register all travel.
- Students will be required to follow travel advisories. If Spain/Comunidad de Madrid has recommended to limit travel, students may not travel.
- Perimeter restrictions have been in place, limiting travel outside one’s neighborhood, city, and region.
- Any tickets should be purchased shortly before the expected travel day with a refund or exchange policy.
Frequently Asked Questions
The public health system is in charge of contact tracing. To assist with the contact tracing, Spain has launched the app, “Radar Covid.”
If a whole class of Middlebury participants needs to be quarantined, the professor will teach remotely. If it’s a single student, the professor will hold virtual office hours with the student and update them about class contents and assignments. If the student is too sick to do homework or take an exam, an extension may be given, so they can complete homework/exam after recovery.
If students have to return home halfway through the semester, the courses of the Sede Prim (Madrid) will turn immediately to a remote format. If the program is suspended shortly before or during the exam period, the Sede Prim will have a one week break to allow for travel and rest, and exams will be administered a week later.
The host universities have their own contingency plans in case they have to suspend in-person classes. They are currently offering a hybrid teaching format (in person + online).
Conditions permitting, both volunteer and internship opportunities will likely be conducted in a hybrid format, combining in-person with remote work.
While we do not plan for students to self-isolate at a hotel upon arrival, students should be aware of the cost of quarantining at hotel, in the case they need to during the semester. Students should budget 100€ per day for the quarantine in a hotel (this includes hotel + 3 meals per day). We recommend budgeting 1.540€ (14 days of room and board + PCR).
- Hygienic face masks (may be used for up to 4 hours): 10-packs may be purchased for aprox. 1.50 €
- FFP2 face masks (may be used for up to 8 hours): aprox. 1 €/mask
- Hand sanitizer: aprox. 3€/500 ml (17 fl. oz)
Students in dorms will be able to quarantine there. We expect that students in homestays will be able to quarantine at home too, and will be able to confirm this soon.
Recommendations for isolation/quarantine:
- Stay at home. Avoid leaving their room and keep it well-ventilated with the door closed.
- Use own bathroom. If they have a shared bathroom, it must be disinfected before others can use it.
- Avoid coming with in a distance of less than 2 meters from others
- Keep hand hygiene products in room
- Avoid receiving home visits.
- Keep a bin with a lid and pedal
- If a student needs to leave their room (to go to the bathroom, for instance) they should wear a face mask.
If a student lives with a host family, tests positive and is not able to continue living with the family or someone in the family tests positive and the student does not feel comfortable staying at the house, the student will need to go to a hotel. The staff will help provide options, but payment and reservations will be the student’s responsibility (see cost of hotel in previous FAQ).
Q What will students do if they are experiencing symptoms or otherwise believe they may have contracted COVID-19?
- Remain home. Contact Sophia Iglesias, Student Affairs and Housing Coordinator, to let her now you are feeling unwell or have a close contact that has tested positive. Contact Unidad Médica to schedule a test (we will go over requesting an appointment during orientation). Remain in quarantine until results are returned.
- If the student is quarantining because of a close contact, they may need to stay in quarantine until 10 days with no symptoms have passed since they were in contact with the person that tested positive (doctor will direct).
- If they were tested because of symptoms, depending on the symptoms exhibited, they may be free to end their quarantine, or may need to be retested.
Evenings and weekends
- If it is an emergency, contact Global Rescue or go to the hospital.
- If it is not an emergency, stay home and send an email to Sophia Iglesias.
- Evenings: Unidad Médica closes at 8pm. Can call before and request an appointment to get tested.
- Weekends: Contact Unidad Médica Monday morning to schedule an appointment to get tested
No. As is the case in the US, not all individuals are required to be vaccinated. The host country might not be as far along in the vaccination rollout process, so it is possible that host families, faculty, etc. will not yet have had access to a vaccine.