October 26th, 2020

College closing classrooms


By Bobinec, Greg on March 16, 2020.

Herald photo by Ian Martens
Classes remained open Friday, but Lethbridge College announced Sunday that classes will be closed beginning this week as post-secondary institutions continue to monitor the situation regarding the COVID-19 pandemic. @IMartensHerald

Greg Bobinec

Lethbridge Herald

gbobinec@lethbridgeherald.com

Lethbridge College is following in the footsteps of many other institutions across the country and around the globe by providing an alternative delivery model for educating their students as the COVID-19 outbreak continues to spread.

Paula Burns, Lethbridge College CEO and President, released a statement to the student and faculty body about the concerns the college has for their health and safety, stating that classes at the start of the week are suspended as they work to move and alternate towards the middle of the week.

“Your health and safety are our top priority, which is why we are making changes,” says Burns. “Classes are suspended on Monday and Tuesday, and we will shift to alternate, online delivery models beginning Wednesday. Practicums, placements, field trips and labs are also suspended for Monday and Tuesday.”

As the shift to an alternate delivery model is a proactive approach that can help stop the spread of COVID-19 throughout the school and city, the college says it wasn’t an easy decision as Alberta Health Services and the provincial government say it is not necessary at this time.

“This is not a decision we have made lightly and while no cases of COVID-19 have been linked to our campus, we want to take proactive steps to help during this time,” says Burns.

“We know that these are unprecedented times, and we know that many of you are feeling stressed and anxious about how this global pandemic is affecting our homes, communities and the entire world. We continue to follow the recommendations of Alberta Health Services and the Government of Alberta, who say it is not necessary to close post-secondary institutions, but we chose to make this decision out of a tremendous amount of caution and care for our campus community.”

The Lethbridge College campus and all of the support services and resources will remain open and accessible to students, and employees will continue to work on-site.

Students and faculty will be contacted through email to provide more information through Canvas before the end of the day on Tuesday, with information that they will need to know on how to begin alternate delivery on Wednesday. Instructors will continue to work with Deans and Associate Deans to put these alternate plans into action.

Lethbridge College is not only encouraging their community to take the proper precautions when interacting and staying clean, but also encouraging students and staff stressed or anxious about the COVID-19 outbreak to reach out to their 24/7 counselling services on campus, online and over the phone.

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