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Fall 2020 COVID-19 Information for Students

August 14, 2020

Blackhawk Technical College is closely monitoring the COVID-19 pandemic situation and will be providing frequent updates to students as campus operating conditions change. Please refer to the BTC Coronavirus (COVID-19) web site for the most up-to-date information and resources for the college’s response to this global pandemic at www.blackhawk.edu/coronavirus.

For Fall Semester 2020, BTC has provided the following COVID-19 guidance documents:

  • The college’s detailed 7-stage Reopening Plan can be found at www.blackhawk.edu/coronavirus.
  • In July 2020, the college made the decision to continue our campus operations in Stage 5 until January 2021. The college’s current reopening stage level (Stage 5) and protocols are subject to change based on local, state, and national guidelines and the public health impacts of the pandemic. The college has developed plans to revert from Stage 5 to Stage 4 operations if conditions change.
  • The college created a Return to Campus Guidebook to centralize all procedures regarding the college’s response to COVID-19. The guidebook is a working document that is subject to change over time based on recommendations of the CDC as well as local, state, and federal guidelines.

Stay Informed!

  • Your Blackhawk student email account is the College’s official communication method. It is where instructors and staff will contact you with important course and campus-specific announcements. Please check your College email often to stay informed.
  • Please use your Blackhawk email account for accessing all virtual student support services.
  • You will receive an email notification and further instructions if the College reverts to Stage 4 operating conditions in response to the COVID-19 pandemic.
  • Please check the BTC COVID-19 Response web site for additional information and community health updates.

COVID-19 Classroom Protocols and Guidance

  • Courses will be offered as Online, FlexLab, or MyEdChoice to minimize the number of individuals on campus at a given time. The following protocols are intended to guide instructional practices under Stage 5 operating conditions in the Fall 2020 semester. The goal is to ensure that all students and faculty are as safe as possible while allowing for meaningful face-to-face and lab-based instruction.
  • All students are expected to comply with these safety protocols, and any additional course-specific instructions provided to them by the class instructor.
  • Please note that non-compliance is a violation of class requirements and the BTC Student Code of Conduct (i.e. Failure to Comply and/or Disruptive Behavior); see the 2020-2021 Catalog.
  • Students who are unwilling to comply with these safety protocols will be asked to leave the classroom and the campus, with the option to return as soon as they agree to comply and follow the BTC protocols.

Masks

  • Facemasks must be worn indoors at all times. Students must wear masks while going to class, transitioning between classes, and during face-to-face instruction at all BTC locations.
  • Students can provide their masks or if needed, a supply of masks is available at each campus. 
  • Students with questions about accommodations should contact Access and Accommodations Services (disabilityinfo@blackhawk.edu) at (608) 743-4582.

Office Hours and Visits to Campus

  • All students must wear masks to participate in on-campus office hours and while inside and Blackhawk location; including classes offered in off-campus locations.
  • Please note that instructors may hold office hour meetings virtually at their discretion.
  • Student Support Services continue online and in-person.

Food and Drink

  • Eating and drinking are not permitted in classrooms. 
  • Students may only eat and drink in designated areas on each campus. Signage for indoor dining areas will be posted by campus, and furniture will be spaced to maintain social distancing guidelines.

Social Distancing Protocols

  • Do not exceed the room capacity posted on the door of the classroom. If you arrive for class and there are no seats available please alert the instructor and remain outside the classroom in a socially-distanced line to await further instructions.
  • As a general practice, when students enter a classroom they should select a seat farthest from the door. When students exit a classroom, those seated closet to the door should be the first to leave, followed by those next closest to the door, and so on.
  • All classroom participants are to maintain a distance of at least six feet from one another during class sessions.
  • Be cautious to limit face-to-face interaction in class and do not congregate in hallways, classrooms, and public areas such as the Commons and shared department areas.
  • Do not move furniture within the classroom; all classrooms have the furniture arranged to promote proper social distancing during face-to-face instruction. 

Transition between Classes 

  • Students must not congregate within campus buildings during transitions or while waiting for classes to begin.
  • Students must also avoid lingering in classrooms after the class session to allow the next class to enter in a timely fashion.
  • Students with questions of an instructor are asked to email the instructor and/or arrange to meet online or in-person at another time.

Classroom Sanitation Protocols

  • Students will be asked to sanitize their hands upon entering the classroom and to sanitize all of their work stations before and after use.

Students Exposed to or Testing Positive for COVID-19 

  • Students who are exposed to COVID-19 should self-disclose this information to Campus Safety at CampusSafety@blackhawk.edu or (608) 757-7617. They will be referred to the Incident Command Team. An investigation and assessment of risk will be conducted before a decision can be made regarding return to campus.
  • Students who test positive for COVID-19 should self-disclose this information to Campus Safety at CampusSafety@blackhawk.edu or (608) 757-7617. Individuals who test positive for COVID-19 are not permitted to return to campus until they receive a negative test result or are released by their physician.
  • According to the US Center for Disease Control (CDC), those with COVID-19 may experience mild to severe symptoms or none at all.
  • Based on CDC Guidelines, students should self-monitor for the following symptoms:
    • Cough
    • Shortness of breath/difficulty breathing
    • Fever (100.4 or higher)
    • Chills
    • Muscle pain
    • Headache
    • Sore throat
    • New loss of taste or smell
    • Fatigue
    • Congestion/Runny Nose
    • Nausea/Vomiting
    • Diarrhea
  • Students who develop any of these symptoms may not attend a campus face-to-face class or any other BTC-related activity in person.
  • Students with COVID-19 symptoms should self-disclose their illness to Campus Safety at CampusSafety@blackhawk.edu or (608) 757-7617 and then alert their instructor and academic advisor to the fact that they will be unable to attend classes in person.
  • Students with these symptoms should notify their primary health care provider for medical guidance on treatment. 
  • As able, students with symptoms can continue to attend class remotely and may only return to campus for face-to-face classes (while wearing a mask) after having been evaluated and cleared by their health care provider, or receiving a negative COVID-19 test result.

Fall 2020 Grading

For Fall 2020, all standard grading policies and procedures are in effect. Please see the BTC
2020-2021 Catalog for information about grading procedures, mid-term grades, incomplete coursework, and add/drop/withdrawal.

**The above information is included in the syllabus addendum for all Fall 2020 courses.**

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