The March 12-issued announcement by St. Clair President Patti France:
At this time, the Windsor-Essex County/Chatham-Kent Health Units continue to report that there are no confirmed cases of COVID-19 in our local area, and that the overall risk remains low for local residents and our campus communities. We understand that there is significant concern now that the World Health Organization has declared the COVID-19 outbreak a pandemic. Colleges have engaged discussions with the Ministry of Colleges and Universities regarding next steps and we are continuing to follow the advice of our health professionals and are in collaboration with the other 23 Ontario colleges. Information is evolving quickly and College planning will react accordingly, placing the health and safety of our staff and students at the forefront.
St. Clair’s administration – in consultation with the provincial government – is developing plans for the possible suspension of on-campus classes. Special exceptions may be necessary for labs and clinical settings. Changes to placements will be communicated by your program Chair and/or Coordinator. St. Clair College is putting in place the necessary tools to enable additional online education to allow the majority of our courses to continue remotely.
More details about the specifics of on-line learning, on a course by course basis, will be forthcoming from School Chairs and individual professors. Look for those detailed messages next week (Break Week) as the current planning is put into practice.
In an attempt to limit the spread of the Coronavirus (COVID-19) as a means of protecting both its students and staff, St. Clair College will implement these measures as of March 23, 2020 (when classes were set to resume after the March Break week).
St. Clair College has developed an FAQ site to disseminate information which can be found on our website at www.stclaircollege.ca/health-centre/coronavirus.
Students departing for March Break: As you depart the College on Friday, March 13, it is important that you take all of your textbooks, notebooks and other learning materials home with you, so that you have all required resources at-hand when the on-line delivery is launched on March 23.
A special message to international students: The College is communicating regularly with both provincial and federal officials to advocate that this interruption of the academic year will not adversely affect the status of visas. Updates on this topic will be provided by the College via its main website (www.stclaircollege.ca), and some may be sent directly to international students via email.
St. Clair College, as always, is committed to the well-being of the communities of Windsor-Essex and Chatham-Kent. It is in that spirit that it is implementing these measures to keep students, staff and citizens safe and healthy.
The health of our students and staff is of paramount concern to the College. In this time of uncertainty, this alternative educational format is the best way of safeguarding that. We encourage you to check the website frequently as information is developing quickly and the College’s position may change. We look forward to a time in the not-too-distant future when we may all gather again, in person, to collectively pursue educational excellence.
EVENTS ON CAMPUS
Public health authorities have determined that one of the best ways to reduce the transmission of the virus is to curtail the person-to-person contact that occurs at large-scale public gatherings. The college is adopting that course of action.
St. Clair College’s Risk Management Committee is reviewing all college events on an ongoing basis, using the Government of Canada’s risk management guidelines for mass gatherings during the Covid-19 global outbreak.
The following events have been cancelled at this time:
• Desi Noise Night, March 12
• No Mans LAN, March 13-14
• College Open House, March 21
• Esports Tournament, March 23
• Heart & Stroke Soup Kitchen, March 25
• Crime Stoppers fundraiser, March 25
• Scholarship Awards Banquets, March 26 and March 30
• Wingo (TSI Event in Chatham), March 26
• Impact Wrestling, March 28
• Video Games downtown, March 31
• HealthClair Day, April 1
If these events can be restaged at a later date, once the threat of the virus’ outbreak has passed, announcements of their rescheduling will be made.
Also, as the progress of the outbreak is tracked in the coming weeks, decisions about the fate of college-based events which had been scheduled for April will be forthcoming.
The college’s Student Representative Council, Student Athletic Association and Thames Students Incorporated (Chatham campus) have also postponed/cancelled a number of their events during the coming weeks in response to the virus’ outbreak.