Maybe so. There is no assumption that HR is planning on a shutdown, just merely observation that 3 weeks at work after an extended absence doesn’t seem like enough time to be caught up to where they left off.
I would assume HR priorities are aligned with the school house and class dates to keep seats full? Not to mention those that were supposed to start their job/training but got delayed. I feel like us previous exp new hires currently in the middle of the hiring process are fairly low on the priority list right now.