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Del Mar enacts Return-to-School plan for first day

Posted at 6:18 PM, Aug 24, 2020

Del Mar College is one of the schools across the state which has begun welcoming students back onto campus.

Students began the Fall 2020 semester Monday, but the school said its decision to have students back in the classroom is one that was approached with concern for health and safety.

Del Mar's extensive Return-to-Campus Plan is the college's strategy to safely phase in its students' and employees' return to campuses as local COVID-19 conditions allow.

With the novel coronavirus still a major health concern, a committee made up of faculty, administrators, department heads and others spent the summer designing the Return to Campus Plan.

Sanitizing stations and mandatory masks are some of the changes being implemented in order to head back to the classroom.

"We considered all the classroom and faculty and staff protocols," said Lenora Keas, who formed part of the committee. "We have social distancing -- which is required; wearing facial coverings or masks."

The committee came up with a three-phase system. Phase One is staying at home, with no one allowed on campuses. Phase Two -- the current phase -- includes a closed campus with restricted access; only necessary personnel is allowed. Phase Three would include allowing everyone back onto campus.

"Over 60 percent of our courses are (being held) remotely, or online hybrid, or hyflex option," Keas said.

Currently, only about 40 percent of students are being allowed back onto the school's properties.

"If we were to have an outbreak, we would basically go back to Phase One, which is: Everyone would stay home until everything has been controlled, contained, disinfected, and we feel everything is safe for everyone to return," Keas said.