The Los Rios Community College District announced the spring 2021 semester will be fully online to accommodate for planning and preparation, according to a LRCCD news released bulletin on Sept. 16.
Public Information Officer Kristie West said the main factors of the decision were the uncertainty of public health dynamics in the coming months and to allow time for the spring 2021 class schedule to be ready.
“We were anticipating this, it’s not a huge surprise,” said West. “I know it’s disappointing for a lot of students and staff.”
The class schedule is usually put together three to four months before the semester and right now is the peak for getting our class schedule made for the upcoming spring semester, said West.
“Students, faculty and staff are asking for, and deserve, as much certainty as possible regarding the status of the upcoming term. By making this announcement now, it allows us to actively plan for how to best continue serving students in this online and remote environment,” according to the LRCCD news bulletin.
Academic Senate President Greg Beyrer said his initial reaction to the announcement had him concerned about students and staff, saying faculty who plan their classes are being interrupted.
“My biggest reaction is, how will students be affected by this decision, especially students who are enrolled in programs that require courses that won’t be offered?” said Beyrer. “Of all of the ways the pandemic is affecting us, I feel like there is a special kind of suffering for those people whose life plans are being interrupted by the pandemic.”
Beyrer said although there is concern and uncertainty, there are positives to be taken from this situation, mainly in regard to Cosumnes River College faculty.
“I hope we, as faculty, will gain a better appreciation for the struggle that some students have,” said Beyrer. “It’s not easy for us to realize how to be a student when you are dealing with life disruptions.”
Beyrer touched on how this experience has the opportunity to benefit students and staff for future situations like this, saying we will be able to function more properly for future traumas such as COVID-19.
According to the LRCCD news bulletin, specific announcements regarding the summer and fall 2021 semesters are expected to be made early into the new year.