Commitment of Shared Responsibility

A culture of safety, responsibility, and accountability is imperative as we address the ongoing and new challenges presented by COVID-19.

We, the faculty, staff, and students of Bennington College, sign this Commitment of Shared Responsibility, a health safety contract required by the State of Vermont, outlining the required health and safety protocols and behavioral expectations, because the individual actions of each of us directly impacts the health and safety of us all. The College will also be responsible for sharing information about additional applicable state regulations related to travel and other activities. These regulations may change over time. All members of the College community must adhere to these regulations.

Updated: 1/20/2021


Vermont Mandatory Guidance

  • I agree that I have read and will comply with Vermont’s Safe and Healthy Return to Campus: Mandatory Guidance for College and University Campus Learning


Physical distancing

  • I will keep 6 feet / 2 meters apart from others. 
  • I will follow the maximum occupancy signs posted in all campus spaces; I understand that many spaces may not be able to be used as they have been in the past.
  • I will maintain furniture arrangements that promote 6 feet / 2 meters of social distance.
  • I will observe current guidelines regarding size and configuration of social gatherings.


Facial Covering

  • I will wear a facial covering, except when eating, in any shared space on campus, including any outside spaces or private spaces where 6 feet / 2 meters of social distance is impossible.
  • I will carry a facial covering with me at all times.


General health, temperature, and symptom check

  • I will self-screen and certify the results by completing the daily health screen. 
  • I will strongly consider getting an influenza vaccination.


Limit exposure

  • I will stay at home or in my room if I am sick or symptomatic (fever about 100°F/ 38° C, cough, shortness of breath or difficulty breathing, chills, repeated shaking with chills, muscle pain, sore throat, new loss of taste or smell)
  • I will follow Vermont's leisure travel guidance for all personal travel.
  • I will abide by the College’s policy of no on-campus visitors and guests for the spring term.
  • I will participate in a contact tracing program if asked and I will share complete information with contact tracers about others who may be exposed.


Hand Washing

  • I will wash my hands frequently with soap and water for at least 20 seconds or use 60% or higher alcohol hand sanitizer as an acceptable alternative.


Cleaning of shared equipment and high-touch surfaces (in addition to the cleaning and disinfecting provided by Buildings and Grounds) 

  • I will eliminate whenever possible the use of shared equipment such as computers, phones, staplers, etc. 
  • I will clean before and after using shared items such as printers, copiers, refrigerator handles, tools, and equipment in workspaces, studios, and shops etc. (The College will provide cleaning and disinfecting supplies.)
  • I will clean before and after using door knobs, light switches, and other high touch areas in offices or rooms.


Shared upholding of the commitment

  • I will follow all of the guidelines listed in this Commitment. 
  • I will engage in direct, respectful dialogue with any member of the community not following the Commitment, and if others engage me, I will acknowledge the feedback respectfully.
  • Direct dialogue between members of the community at the time of the incident will almost always be the most effective way to address a concern. We also understand that there may be situations, due to power differentials or other dynamics, that could cause someone to feel unable to engage in direct dialogue. In situations where direct dialogue was not possible, community members can share concerns through this form. (Updated September 1, 2020)

Student Life, the Provost and Dean's Office, and Human Resources will be in touch with students, faculty, and staff about signing the document before members come on campus.