Update for Faculty
Greetings, Cerro Coso Faculty:
Apologies in advance for the long email. The following statements are meant to provide some guidance here at the end of the semester as you set about giving grades and closing out the semester. Also included are some updates on the summer and fall semesters as well as links to documents you might need. So without further ado:
- Grade options at the end of the semester. This semester, like always, you will see the grade options of A, B, C, D, F, and I. In giving grades, we ask you to be mindful of and sympathetic to the extenuating circumstances that students have encountered this semester. But in the end give students the proper grade using your professional judgment.
- “I” Grade. Give an “I” if you have individual students who were not able to complete the course work and with whom you have made individual arrangements to get this done within a year. According to the Chancellor’s executive order ES 20-10, faculty should assess, on a student-by-student basis, when the use of an “I” would be appropriate for a student impacted by COVID-19 and whether the student’s individual circumstances constitute an “unforeseeable, emergency, and justifiable reason” for needing additional time. In this respect, giving an “I” is no different this semester than it has ever been. Use the process described in Faculty 411 to submit the Incomplete Grade Contract form.
- “IP” Grade. If you are one of the rare faculty whose class has been suspended and not just a week or two extended, please work with your dean to ensure that an “IP” grade is recorded for all students in the class. “IP” is not a grade you can select when giving grades. It can only be administratively applied so work with your dean.
- Withdrawal. Even at this late date, you or the student can initiate a withdrawal from the class. If a student has not been participating actively in your course for over two weeks, you might consider submitting a withdrawal on their behalf. The student will receive an EW on his or her transcript and be allowed to retake the class at a later time without penalty. In contrast to the “I”, which keeps the student in an enrolled status for the class, the withdrawal closes the books, so to speak, on the student’s experience and allows him or her to start over in a subsequent semester. To submit a late withdrawal, complete this Instructor Withdrawal Exception form and send to your dean. Please note: even after the semester is over, students will still be able to appeal for a withdrawal and EW.
- Classes running a week or two weeks late. If your class is taking an additional week or two to wrap up, that’s no problem. We just need to know about it. Not only do we have to submit the course name and number as part of our COVID-19 paperwork to the state, but financial aid has to recalculate drop dates so students are not disadvantaged. Please let your faculty chair or dean know right away if you expect to miss the first grade deadline of Tuesday, May 19, 2020. Otherwise, the grade deadline for full-term classes that are scheduled to end May 15 is close of business on Tuesday, May 19, 2020.
- Fall Semester. Planning for the fall semester remains unchanged. We are continuing to plan for onground classes in the fall according to the long-term schedule at each campus location, with each class having a Plan B if it must be moved into remote delivery.
- At the faculty chairs yesterday, we identified July 15 as the date to communicate any changes to this plan. This provides enough time to see any changes in stay-at-home orders, group gathering guidelines, etc., but is still far enough out from the start of the semester if we need to communicate to students that a change to Plan B is necessary.
- One change we are looking to make now is bringing the classroom seat capacity for onground classes down to levels consistent with safe social distancing numbers. If the outlook on July 15 is more of the same social distancing, we will not have overfilled classes; if the outlook is rosier, we can increase caps; if the outlook is still stay-at-home, we can move to the Plan B’s.
- About the Plan B’s: please work with your faculty chair and dean to determine what will happen to your onground class if we are again forced into a remote delivery mode. Online is not the only option! Even this semester, one technique being used is the instructor still meeting students during class time to deliver lectures—just over Zoom instead of face-to-face. Please discuss your Plan B with your chair and dean now so we can support you if the time comes. Also, we can get you some training if you want it, just in case.
- Finally, as to the Plan B’s, if you would like your onground students to know what your Plan B is, we will work with you to get a statement attached as a note in the searchable schedule. Mostly, students will assume it’s online. If you would like to let them know something different, contact your chair and dean.
Because I know there may be questions about some of these items, I am scheduling a couple of Zoom conference calls this week. Please attend the one that is more convenient for you, and I’ll do the best I can to answer these and other instructional questions you might have. Note: I have enabled the waiting room as a security measure. I’ve never used this before, but I have been advised that when you sign in, please use your username.
Faculty Q and A, Wednesday, April 29 11:00 am to 12:00 noon
Faculty Q and A, Thursday, April 30 4:00 pm to 5:00 pm
Thank you all so much for the work you do—and have done in this challenging and stressful semester—and the dedication you show every day to students and student success. Remember that if you feel you have a 10 + 1 issue bring it to the academic senate to the attention of Ben, and if you are encountering a working conditions issue, bring it to Joe or any CCA rep.
Vice President of Instruction