LOS ANGELES (CBSLA) – Amid the alarming rise in coronavirus cases as a result of the emergence of the Omicron variant, the University of Southern California and the University of California, Los Angeles have extended remote learning.

LOS ANGELES, CA – AUGUST 23: The Trojan Statue at the center of the USC campus Monday for the first day of in-person classes. USC and California State University campuses start in-person classes on Monday, serving as a test case for whether vaccine mandates, masking, regular testing and other protocols can minimize spread of the Delta variant even as thousands of students congregate in classes, dorms and social events.
USC campus on Monday, Aug. 23, 2021 in Los Angeles, CA. (Al Seib / Los Angeles Times via Getty Images).

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Both universities had previously announced delays of in-person learning due to COVID-19 in December 2021, affecting the start of on-campus classes in January.

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“Given the distinct challenges of the Omicron variant, USC will add four additional days of remote learning, and we now plan to resume in-person instruction Monday, January 24,” USC officials wrote in an email to students and faculty on Friday.

UCLA had originally planned for in-person learning through Jan. 18, though officials are extending that by 10 days.

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“We write today to share the news that UCLA will extend remote instruction through Jan. 28. While we had hoped that our safety protocols and enhanced testing requirements would be sufficient to allow us to resume in-person instruction after next week, regional and campus trends in positivity rates…have led us to conclude that an extension of remote education is the prudent course of action,” the announcement, also released on Friday, read.