Reopening Protocols for Fall 2020

Students standing with arms outstretched.

CAPTION:  Dr. Corey Marvin Interim President and Vice President of Instruction, Heather Ostash Vice President of Student Services, and Pam Campbell Director of Access Programs demonstrate the importance of masks on, wiping  down surfaces, wash hands regularly and use hand sanitizer for the fall 2020 term.

College Releases Reopening Protocols for Fall 2020 Semester

Interim President, Dr. Corey Marvin, released reopening protocols for the fall 2020 semester at Cerro Coso Community College.  “Not only does this document represent a lot of input by a lot of people but it captures the college's approach to the pandemic and to staff and student safety—pieces of which might very well become the new normal,” he stated in an email to staff.

The document is informed primarily by guidelines received from the Statewide Association of Community Colleges (SWACC) who, as the college's liability insurance provider, has provided comprehensive guidance related to reopening. It has also been substantially aligned with the California Department of Public Health ‘s Guidance for Institutions of Higher Education, which was just recently released. And these protocols have been reviewed by the Kern County Public Health Services.

Some highlights of the protocols includes face coverings are to be worn in public spaces at the college by faculty, staff, and students (classrooms, hallways, restrooms, offices visited by the public, etc.) in line with the same requirements state-wide for all workers and members of the public, until further notice.

All students and staff intending to visit any of the Cerro Coso Community College campuses for any reason whatsoever—including classes and scheduled work hours—must complete an on-campus visit form available on the college website prior to every arrival on campus. Students must complete the Student Campus Visit form. Faculty and staff must complete the Employee Campus Visit form. These forms let M&O, Campus Security, and site directors know who is on campus in case of emergency and for cleaning reasons. They also require the individual to affirm that they are free of COVID symptoms at the time of their visit and that they agree to abide by the protocols and healthy hygiene practices described in this document while on campus.

Until further notice, any face-to-face meeting between students and a faculty member or other employee will be pre-arranged by appointment only and will take place in the learning assistance center (LAC), one-stop shop, or other public space sufficiently sized to maintain social distancing. Students must complete the Student Campus Visit form prior to arrival; the faculty or staff member must complete the Employee Campus Visit form.

The only instruction taking place wholly or partially in-person at any Cerro Coso Community College campus for fall 2020 is classes supporting training for essential workforce activities (drafting, emergency medical technology, health careers, machine tool technology, and welding) and intercollegiate athletic classes.

Student support services such as counseling, advising, financial aid, admissions and records, outreach, and Access programs will continue to occur virtually unless or until restrictions are lifted.

Learning support services such as library and proctoring will continue to occur virtually unless or until restrictions are lifted.

Tutoring services and open lab availability for individual study will be offered at the IWV, Bishop, Mammoth, KRV, and Tehachapi learning assistance centers in limited amounts on an appointment basis and require face coverings and physical distancing.

All common spaces will be closed. All tables and chairs have been removed from spaces where individuals may gather, including the student center and employee break room. There will be an exception for appointment-based use of the learning assistance center by students and staff. 

Faculty and staff who are at a higher risk for severe illness (including older adults and people of all ages with certain underlying medical conditions) are directed to contact the college HR office to seek an accommodation that limits their risk of exposure.

Students or staff who believe they have been exposed to COVID should contact any of the following: Human Resources (staff or students), Campus Security (staff or students), Area Administrator (staff), and Instructor (students).

To address any questions or concerns about COVID-19, the college's response, or compliance with the protocols, an email account has been created that goes to members of the Core Response Team for immediate review:

“These reopening protocols are a living document. We are anticipating that changes will be made as conditions continue to evolve. We are continuing to work with Mono or Inyo county departments of public health for their review and feedback. While we are not expecting significant changes, they may have particular items they would like addressed more fully. But any input from inside or outside the institution that helps clarify and improve the document and our response is appreciated,” stated Marvin.

“The decision to reduce activity on campus was not an easy one to make; however, it was a measure that we took to protect the most vulnerable members of our communities.  At the same time, we are aware that living through times of uncertainty such as these can make us anxious about the future.  Our primary focus is to continue to provide a safe learning and working environment for all our students and employees.”   

The Reopening Protocols document for the college is available online at .

Fall 2020 classes at Cerro Coso Community College begin August 24, 2020.