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San Diego community colleges adjust instruction due to COVID-19 pandemic

Southwestern College
Posted at 1:23 PM, Mar 26, 2020
and last updated 2020-03-26 16:23:23-04

SAN DIEGO (KGTV) – Community colleges across San Diego County are taking their classes online and canceling many events for the remainder of the school year due to the COVID-19 outbreak.

Officials with the San Diego & Imperial Counties Community College Association said its schools would transition to online classes and hold meetings remotely. Some schools will provide equipment and services -- such as computers and internet access -- for students in need.

The changes being implemented at each district are outlined below (information from SDICCCA):

Grossmont-Cuyamaca Community College District
-- Classes and student support services at Grossmont and Cuyamaca colleges are being held remotely until the end of the spring semester on June 1, and both campuses will remain closed to all students and the public at least until then. All instructional activities and office hours, including any lab courses, and support services will be held in some form of remote delivery. Faculty will be communicating directly with their students regarding next steps. All but essential District employees were directed to work from home beginning March 20.

All student events through June 1 also are cancelled, and intercollegiate athletics games are cancelled indefinitely. Decisions have not been made regarding commencement at the two East County colleges. For more information, go to the district's COVID-19 web page.

Imperial Valley College
-- The Imperial Valley College campus is closed until further notice, but courses have either been moved or are in the process of being moved online, and students in need are being provided with laptops and internet service. All public events, including sports, have been cancelled. Further information is available via the Imperial Valley College COVID-19 webpage.

MiraCosta College
-- All public events -- including commencement and end-of-the-year celebrations -- have been cancelled at MiraCosta College, which extended its spring break by a week to allow for a more seamless transition to online and other remote instruction through the remainder of the semester when classes resume March 30. Student support services, including counseling and e-tutoring, also will be held online. Students and employees are directed to work remotely and are asked not to come to MiraCosta College campus sites. Updates can be found at the MiraCosta College COVID-19 web page.

Palomar College
-- Palomar College in San Marcos, which cancelled its May 22 commencement, will deliver all its classes and labs remotely via Canvas, web conferencing, or similar approach when the semester resumes March 30 following spring break, and the nonprofit Palomar College Foundation has distributed 400 computers to students who would otherwise be unable to take their courses online. The Foundation is continuing to accept applications for emergency grants and is accepting donations from the public. Students who are seeking academic support or other basic need resources can visit the Student FAQs and a Quick Guide to Student Services. In addition, Palomar has designed a new faculty TeachAnywhere website, which contains resources and FAQs on teaching remotely and supporting students in an online environment.

Only essential personnel who are critical to the operations of the college will be given access to the main campus or education centers in Fallbrook, Escondido and Rancho Bernardo. Updates can be found at the Palomar College COVID-19 web page.

San Diego Community College District
-- San Diego City, Mesa, and Miramar colleges and all seven San Diego Continuing Education campuses are closed and have transitioned completely to online classes. Each institution is working to assist students and faculty with the transition, including providing them with laptops, webcams and other equipment. SDCCD Chancellor Dr. Constance M. Carroll has said the district should be prepared to finish the spring semester completely online and that the summer session will also be offered completely online. All district events except for commencement have been canceled. Also canceled are several summer study abroad programs. The district’s 5,000 employees – with few exceptions for those with essential duties – are now working remotely, and the district’s Board of Trustees will hold its first online session ever when it meets using Zoom on April 9.

Updates and additional information on resources can be found at the district’s COVID-19 web page.

Southwestern College
-- Effective Monday, March 16, Southwestern College transitioned to remote instruction and operations, and it has established an Online Learning website for workshops and training for both faculty and staff. The college will continue online and alternative distance-learning formats for the remainder of its spring semester and its upcoming summer session. Only essential personnel is allowed at its facilities.

Southwestern College is surveying its graduating class for input on commencement, be it a virtual celebration or postponement to a later date. A decision is expected to be announced by April 10. All other events and ceremonies are canceled at all Southwestern College campuses, including the Crown Cove Aquatic Center.

The Southwestern College Foundation, in partnership with the Southwestern College Board of Trustees, has launched an SWC Cares Emergency Campaign to assist students in need. Updates can be found through the college’s Special Health Updates web page.