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Rising COVID-19 in Wisconsin

October 2, 2020

Our incident command team continues to monitor our situation very closely as we have seen a significant uptick in investigations following Labor Day.  In September, the team conducted 80 investigations regarding COVID-19. Through the investigative process, it was determined that only a very small number were positive confirmed cases of individuals who were on campus. The majority of all cases investigated were the result of exposures to the virus off-campus involving individuals who were not on campus.

As a result of our extensive safety requirements, no community spread has occurred at Blackhawk. Our safety protocols are working. Wearing a facemask appropriately, staying six feet apart, good air exchange and good hand hygiene and surface sanitization are essential to slowing the spread of the virus. I truly appreciate your commitment to protecting yourself and others.

As good of a job as we are doing, our state is not.  Wisconsin has made national headlines this week for its rising cases of COVID-19 with Rock and Green Counties reflecting the same trends.  Therefore, it is prudent to make adjustments to respond to this new development.  We remain focused on delivering a flexible education in a supportive environment to you and giving you options through flexible education options like flex lab and MyEdChoice.  At the same time, we must respond to external events to ensure a safe workplace and learning environment.  Because cases are on the rise in our area, we must take precautions to de-densify our campuses.

College leaders are creating plans for their workgroups to stagger work schedules to ensure safety and to decrease the potential of exposure. Staggered schedules may include some staff members working from home. We will do everything we can to ensure safety while continuing to be here to support you in-person as well as virtually.

There are no current plans to discontinue any in-person services or educational offerings.  By working together, following our safety protocols, we are hopeful that we can continue operations in Stage 5 throughout the Fall semester.  Although we cannot control what happens off our campus, I ask that you become role models for our community and educate your friends and family on the behaviors necessary to limit the spread of this horrible virus.

We will continue to monitor the situation in cooperation with local and state public health officials and keep you up to date regarding any changes to operations. The leadership team here at Blackhawk is committed to your safety and we are committed to remaining open to serve all of our students. Thank you for choosing Blackhawk and trusting us with this part of your educational journey.

Stay well,
Dr. Tracy Pierner
President, Blackhawk Technical College
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