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Overview

Since March 2020, the global COVID-19 pandemic has led to an unprecedented and rapid transition of all classes and services to the online environment. Though there are still many questions about how long we will operate predominantly online, we must plan for our eventual return to campus now.

The fall 2021 semester has significantly more in-person offerings and many student support services are serving students in person. Expanded in-person service is predicated on continued positive trends in public health conditions and the reduction and elimination of state and local COVID-19 mitigation measures.

The Los Rios colleges are planning for a full return to campuses for the spring 2022 semester, which begins in January, as public health conditions continue to improve.

Student Services Reopening Fall 2021

Some student services will be open for in-person services during the fall 2021 semester, which begins August 21, 2021. Visit your college to see availability for each service.

Positive COVID Cases at Los Rios

Employee Cases

Month ARC Cases CRC Cases FLC Cases SCC Cases
Aug. 2 1 1 1
Sept. 2 1 0
3

Student Cases

Month ARC Cases CRC Cases FLC Cases SCC Cases
Aug. 11 4 17 15
Sept. 9 7 8 4

FAQ: Classes and Schedule

Are the Los Rios colleges offering classes online or in-person for fall 2021?

The fall 2021 schedule includes a mixture of both online and in-person classes, with significantly more in-person classes than we offered in spring 2021. As social distancing and other public health safety requirements are eased, we will continue to bring more classes and services back in-person.

In-person offerings will include:

  • Allied Health Programs – Classes in Allied Health programs that were in-person in fall 2020/spring 2021 will again be scheduled to be in person.
  • "Impossible-to-Convert/Complete" Programs – A total of 27 programs that we have been entirely or mostly unable to offer at all in the past year. These programs will proceed in person regardless of the status of social distancing requirements, with significant safety planning to ensure that students, faculty, and staff are safe.
  • "Difficult-to-Convert" Programs/Courses – Classes in "Difficult-to-Convert" areas such as hard science labs, ESL, the arts, and affinity cohort programs like Umoja, Puente, and TRIO. If social distancing is required in the weeks leading up to the start of the fall term, then these courses will all be reverted to online classes.
  • Additional in-person Math and English Classes – A substantial number of new math/statistics/quantitative reasoning and English (ENGWR only) courses (these are additional classes above what is already planned for the schedule) in support of our districtwide focus on equity and completion. These classes will proceed in-person regardless of the status of social distancing requirements, again with significant safety planning.

If Los Rios can’t offer everything on campus in fall 2021, then how will it decide which classes or services to prioritize?

As we look at expanding in-person offerings, the first priority is to resume impossible to convert classes and programs (such as classes and programs that have been in complete hibernation since the move to remote operations) and students who may have been able to complete some classes, but have not been able to complete all the necessary coursework to make progress towards completing their program. Getting these students back engaged and moving towards their degree or certificate is the top priority.

The next priority is programs and classes that have been particularly difficult to convert to online, classes where critical aspects of the curriculum have had to be altered or skipped, and specific math and English classes critical to students' academic success.

FAQ: In-Person Services

Are student services offered in person?

For fall 2021, many student services are offering in-person services at least partially. Implementation of these critical services for students will vary college-by-college based on student demand and unique staffing dynamics.

When will we be back to "normal?"

With so many questions, we understand the challenges in planning for the spring 2022 semester and beyond. That said, we also know that so many of our students are anxious and eager to return fully to campus in a safe and healthy way.

We are currently planning for a full return to campuses in spring 2022, with the recognition that our "new normal" may look different than what we have all been used to. We will continue to use the most current national, regional, and local public guidance as well as feedback from Los Rios stakeholders to inform all decisions. Much will change between now and the time that decisions for spring 2022 will need to be finalized, and we will continue to work closely with our community on all of those discussions and keep everyone informed along the way.

If Los Rios can’t offer everything on campus in fall 2021, then how will it decide which classes or services to prioritize?

As we look at expanding in-person offerings, the first priority is to resume impossible to convert classes and programs (such as classes and programs that have been in complete hibernation since the move to remote operations) and students who may have been able to complete some classes, but have not been able to complete all the necessary coursework to make progress towards completing their program. Getting these students back engaged and moving towards their degree or certificate is the top priority.

The next priority is programs and classes that have been particularly difficult to convert to online, classes where critical aspects of the curriculum have had to be altered or skipped, and specific math and English classes critical to students' academic success.

Can students use a campus computer to apply for and enroll in classes?

Campus computer labs are not yet open for student use. Call (916) 286-3777 for application and enrollment help.

Are students required to come to campus to complete forms or processes when on-campus operations resume?

No, during the COVID closure, nearly all of our documents and processes were moved online. Following the COVID closure, we will maintain these services and processes online for your convenience.

Will there be in-person events and workshops?

The majority of events and workshops will continue to be offered virtually, but as health conditions ease we are slowly bringing some events and student opportunities back on campus. Check your college website and social media channels for the most up-to-date information.

Will students be able to print on campus?

Printing on campus is still very limited but we will expand printing opportunities as conditions improve.

Can students come to campus for tutoring?

Currently, most tutoring will continue to occur virtually. However, we will offer some in-person tutoring beginning in the fall semester. Check your college's tutoring website or contact the college tutoring office for hours and more information.

Is the library open for studying, to check out books, or to meet with a librarian?

Librarians are available for online appointments with students. Visit the library website to chat or make an appointment. Students can request books and pick them up via a safe and socially-distanced method.

The CRC, FLC, and SCC libraries will be open for limited in-person hours to provide access to computers, printing/copying, study space, and access to the physical collection.

The ARC library will have a service window open for picking up and dropping off materials. Computers, printers, and copiers may be accessed at the Learning Resource Center (LRC).

FAQ: Health and Safety

What happens if I test positive for COVID-19 or am exposed to someone who has? How long do I need to quarantine? Who will let me know when I can return to campus/class?

If you test positive for COVID-19 or are exposed to someone who has tested positive for COVID-19, then do not come to campus. Email your supervisor or professor to let them know you have tested positive for COVID.

If you were exposed for more than fifteen minutes in a 24-hour period and within six feet of an infected person, do not come to campus. Email your supervisor or professor to let them know you were exposed to COVID.

After your email is received, a college representative will reach out to you to gather more information. The quarantine period is different depending on whether you are fully vaccinated, have symptoms, and/or have tested positive for COVID-19. Our COVID team will provide guidance once the situation is reviewed and evaluated. Guidance will include when you are allowed to return to campus/class.

Find procedures, forms, and training for each location:

FAQ: Masks

Are masks required on campus?

Updated July 20, 2021

Masks are required for all students, employees, and visitors in any indoor space at Los Rios Community College District, regardless of vaccination status. Masks are not required for outdoor activities; however, masks are always permissible and anyone who feels safer or more comfortable wearing a face-covering outdoors is encouraged to do so.

Throughout the pandemic, we have consistently relied on recommendations from public health experts regarding the best approaches to keep our students, faculty, and staff healthy and safe. In mid-July, Sacramento County and Yolo County announced new "strong" recommendations that all residents, vaccinated and unvaccinated, again wear masks at all times indoors to combat the growing number of cases and hospitalizations due to the new, highly contagious Delta variant.

Can students request an exemption from wearing a mask for medical reasons?

If you have a medical condition, mental health condition, communication disability, or other disability that precludes you from wearing a face mask and you seek an exemption from the Los Rios COVID-19 face mask requirements, then download the Student COVID-19 Face Mask Medical Exemption Request Form and consult with your physician, mental health counselor, therapist, or medical professional. You can print and fill out the form by hand, or fill it out digitally. Email signed and completed exemption requests to the appropriate college:

You can send questions to each college using these same email addresses.

Will the college provide masks to students?

A limited supply of masks will be provided in each classroom and at student support counters/locations for students who need masks.

Is there a specific mask I must wear? Do certain masks not qualify?

According to the Centers for Disease Control (CDC), there are many types of masks you can use to protect yourself and others from getting and spreading COVID-19, including cloth and disposable masks. Choose a mask that fits your face snugly.

For more information about selecting the right mask, the CDC has a number of great resources:

Scarfs, ski masks, balaclavas, bandanas, turtlenecks, collars, or single layers of fabric are not acceptable face coverings, as they do not provide adequate protection from the COVID-19 virus. Additionally, face shields cannot be used in lieu of masks unless a part of a specific accommodation for an approved mask exemption.

FAQ: Vaccine Requirements

Are students required to be vaccinated?

As of October 1, 2021, COVID-19 vaccinations are required for all students who access district and college facilities (including in-person classes, student support services, and any other indoor activity).

Consistent with all applicable laws, Los Rios grants limited exemptions for eligible documented medical conditions as well as narrowly defined and sincerely held religious beliefs. Learn how to request a medical or religious vaccination requirement exemption.

Los Rios continues to offer online options for students who choose not to meet the vaccine requirement.

How do I request a medical or religious exemption?

Exemptions to the vaccination requirement are limited and only available for certain medical conditions and sincerely held religious beliefs. Learn how to request a medical or religious vaccination requirement exemption.

Do I have to get vaccinated if I am taking only online classes?

Any Los Rios student who expects to come on campus for any reason will need to be vaccinated or have an approved exemption on file. This includes all on-campus classes and on-campus services.

People who will never be on campus, including students who are only enrolled in online classes, are not currently subject to the requirement.

COVID-19 vaccines are safe and effective and we recommend everyone get vaccinated. Learn about the benefits of getting a COVID-19 vaccine.

Can a student who has not met the vaccine requirement register for spring 2022 classes?

Students who have not met the vaccine requirement will be permitted to register for online classes only. A student's ability to enroll in in-person classes will be restored upon demonstrating the student has met the vaccination requirement.

What if I am not vaccinated or do not have an exemption approved by October 1?

Los Rios students who are not vaccinated or who do not have an approved exemption on file after October 1 will not be allowed to come to any district or college facility in person and will be subject to discipline, up to and including possible suspension.

Can I get tested instead of getting the vaccine?

No. The Los Rios colleges and our Board of Trustees believe that a vaccine requirement is the fastest and best way for us to help keep our community safe and end the pandemic. We will continue to offer online classes for students who can't or choose not to receive their first vaccine dose or an approved exemption.

How do I submit a vaccine requirement exemption request?

Exemptions to the vaccination requirement are limited and only available for certain medical conditions and sincerely held religious beliefs. Learn how to request a medical or religious vaccination requirement exemption.

Are booster shots required?

Updated October 12, 2021

Currently, booster shots are not required as part of the Los Rios vaccination requirement, but we will continue to follow all recommendations from local and national public health experts on this important topic. If at some point public health officials deem booster doses essential to keeping our communities safe, then we will adjust our vaccination requirements accordingly.

As of October 1, 2021, Los Rios requires that all Los Rios students who take in-person classes or access district/college facilities and all employees have received their first vaccine dose (or have an approved exemption on file).

All Los Rios employees must be fully vaccinated by December 1, 2021.

All students must be fully vaccinated (or have an approved exemption) in order to enroll in any in-person classes and/or access district and college facilities for the spring 2022 semester.

By what date do I need to be fully vaccinated?

As of October 1, 2021, all students who take in-person classes or access in-person services and all employees must have provided proof of their first vaccine dose.

All Los Rios employees must be fully vaccinated by December 1, 2021.

All students who take in-person classes and/or access district and college facilities need to be fully vaccinated to enroll for the spring 2022 semester.

Can I get help uploading my vaccination documentation if I come to campus?

Each college has an on-campus location where students can get help scanning and uploading their vaccination information.
College Location Hours
American River College Learning Resource Center Monday, 8:30 to 2:00 pm; Tuesday and Thursday, 8:30 am to 4:30 pm; Wednesday, 8:30 am to 3:00 pm
Cosumnes River College College Center Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday, 9:00 am to 2:00 pm
Folsom Lake College Welcome and Student Success Center Monday and Thursday, 8:00 am to 5:00 pm; Tuesday and Wednesday, 8:00 am to 6:30 pm
Sacramento City College Learning Resource Center Monday thru Thursday, 10:00 am to 2:00 pm

Will there be an extension for students to get vaccinated?

No, there are no extensions to the vaccine requirement.

Does the vaccination requirement apply to approved volunteers?

Yes, the district's vaccination requirement applies to employees, students, and volunteers. Volunteers must provide proof of vaccination to the administrator responsible for the program or area, and receive approval/clearance from Human Resources by the dates identified in this before engaging in any in-person volunteer activities at Los Rios campuses or facilities.

As is the case for students and employees, volunteers must have received at least one dose of any two-dose vaccine by October 1 in order to be on campus. Just like with students and employees, we are still finalizing policies and standards relating to allowable exemptions from the vaccination requirement, and we expect to have more details to share in the near future. Exemptions to the vaccination requirement will be very limited and only available for certain medical conditions and sincerely held religious beliefs. Once the exemption policy is finalized, we will share publicly the process for requesting an exemption.

Are Advanced Education (high school) students subject to the vaccine requirement?

Yes, the vaccination requirement is the same for Advanced Education students and regularly admitted students. Advanced Education students enrolled in an in-person class must report vaccination status. Advanced Education students enrolled only in online classes are not required to report vaccination status.

If a vaccinated student becomes so ill due to COVID-19 that it impacts their ability to successfully complete their classes and they want to withdraw, what are the options? What does a student need to submit to Admissions & Records for medical leave?

Excused Withdrawal

Students may withdraw from a class up to the 'W' notation deadline advertised on the academic calendar page and receive a 'W' in the course. Students may petition for an Excused Withdrawal (EW) by submitting a Late Drop Petition Form through eServices along with verification of the illness. However, please note that an EW will not be given to a student who chose not to be vaccinated if that is the sole basis for requesting the EW.

How to access the Late Drop Petition Form:

  1. Log onto eServices
  2. Click on the Other Resources tile
  3. Click on eForms
  4. Select Late Drop Petition Form

Medical Leave

Students may petition for a 'Leave of Absence' for medical reasons. A 'Leave of Absence' is different from withdrawing from classes, but will preserve catalog rights for students who are expected to be unable to attend for a longer period than one semester. To request a 'Leave of Absence', students must file a Student Petition form at their college:

Verification of the illness or medical need must be submitted with the petition. Completed documents should be emailed to the college Admissions and Records office.

Will students who do not meet the vaccine requirement by the deadline have the option to receive an incomplete ('I') in their in-person classes?

No, students who do not meet the vaccine requirement by the deadline will be referred to a disciplinary process. They will not receive an incomplete ('I') grade in the in-person classes.

Will students who do not meet the vaccine requirement by the deadline have the option to switch to online sections of their classes?

No, students who do not meet the vaccine requirement by the deadline will be referred to a disciplinary process. They will not be automatically transferred to an online offering of the course(s). However, students may enroll in online courses that are still open for enrollment.

What is the financial aid impact on students who choose not to get vaccinated and are withdrawn from their classes?

Students' eligibility for financial aid is dependent on the number of course-applicable units they are enrolled in. Students who withdraw from a course or are withdrawn from the course may receive less financial aid or be required to repay some or all of the aid they already received.

Additionally, students must meet future eligibility requirements to continue to receive financial aid. Withdrawing from courses may impact a student's ability to receive financial aid based on Satisfactory Academic Progress requirements. Students should consult with their campus' financial aid office to discuss withdrawal from courses and the impact on financial aid eligibility.

How have students been informed of the consequences of choosing not to be vaccinated?

We have sent regular weekly communication to all students since the COVID-19 mandate was implemented, along with phone calls and text messages to students enrolled in in-person classes.

How will a student be impacted by an administrative drop resulting from disciplinary action due to not complying with the vaccine requirement?

Students will be dropped effective the date of the disciplinary determination and will receive the same notation ('W' or 'F') as if the student had initiated the drop on that date.

Administrative drops are considered attempts for repeat purposes; students administratively dropped from a course they are attempting for the third time may be unable to attempt the course again.

Students receiving a 'W' should be aware that this may impact their financial aid and may be required to repay some of their financial aid depending on the date they are dropped from their in-person class.

Students who receive financial aid and/or are part of special programs/cohorts – such as but not limited to veterans, athletes, and international students – are responsible for inquiring with the specific programs the consequences of being dropped from classes.

What is the course repeat policy and how does it apply to the courses dropped due to being unvaccinated?

Students may not repeat a course beyond three times.

Notation received as a result of an administrative drop via the discipline process will count as an attempt for repeatability purposes and will negatively impact a student's academic progress. An Excused Withdrawal 'EW' obtained through the petition process will not count as an attempt for repeatability purposes.

Administrative drops are considered attempts for repeat purposes; students administratively dropped from a course they are attempting for the third time may be unable to attempt the course again.

Are vaccinations required for international F-1 students?

Continuing international students who were enrolled in a course of study in the US at the college on or before March 9, 2020, and who left the US and are currently attending online classes to maintain their F-1 status from abroad will not be required to provide proof of vaccination to continue attending online classes.

International students attending in-person classes will need to provide proof of vaccination the same as any other student to remain compliant with our Code of Conduct. USCIS requires international students who entered the US on an initial I-20 to the college after March 9, 2020 to maintain at least one in-person class each semester to maintain the F-1 visa status.

All new initial or transfer students who wish to enroll in the spring 2022 term or after will be required to provide proof of full COVID-19 vaccination with a vaccine that is on the World Health Organization's approved list. All non-English documents must be translated into English when submitted to the International Student Office or uploaded to the student's eServices account as vaccine verification.

Translators with knowledge of educational records and terminology should be used. Resources include the American Translators Association, the Northern California Translators Association, and the Southern California Area Translators and Interpreters Association.

FAQ: Testing for Students with Approved Exemptions

The testing protocol is available only to those students who have an approved medical or religious exemption and a documented accommodation that requires weekly testing.

If I am taking classes fully online and I have an approved exemption, then do I need to test every week?

Students need to test at a StemExpress locations and receive your results if you wish to enter any college building or come to campus for more than 15 minutes. For each week that you do not test, you will receive an email indicating you are out of compliance with your testing requirement.

Note: This testing protocol is available only to those students who have an approved medical or religious exemption and a documented accommodation that requires weekly testing.

What happens if I miss my testing appointment?

If you miss your testing appointment, then you will be prohibited from coming to campus for any classes and/or services. After you have resumed your testing protocol, you will again be eligible to return to campus.

If you miss any classes due to failure to comply with testing requirements, then those absences will be unexcused and may lead to negative consequences in that class. Refer to your class syllabus for the class attendance policy.

Note: This testing protocol is available only to those students who have an approved medical or religious exemption and a documented accommodation that requires weekly testing.

How often must I get tested for COVID?

Every student and employee who has an approved exemption needs to be tested weekly to be considered "cleared" and able to come to any college or district facility.

Note: This testing protocol is available only to those students and employees who have an approved medical or religious exemption and a documented accommodation that requires weekly testing.

Do I have to get tested on the same day and time each week?

No, students can get tested through our testing provider – StemExpress – any time Monday through Thursday of each week.

Though StemExpress is open on our campuses Monday through Friday, students must get tested by the end of each Thursday to be in compliance for the following week. Students cannot get tested on Friday and still be in compliance.

If you fail to get tested for an entire week, then you are prohibited from coming to campus for any classes and/or services until you are back in compliance.

Note: This testing protocol is available only to those students who have an approved medical or religious exemption and a documented accommodation that requires weekly testing.

Do I have to pay to get tested?

No. Los Rios covers the cost of all testing for employees and students through StemExpress. Though the StemExpress website lists a cost for tests, those costs are being billed directly to Los Rios for our students and employees.

Note: This testing protocol is available only to those students and employees who have an approved medical or religious exemption and a documented accommodation that requires weekly testing.

Can I go to any StemExpress?

Yes – StemExpress will provide testing on each of our main campuses, but you do not have to get tested at the location where you primarily work or study. As long as you get tested at any StemExpress location, a record of your test will be provided to Los Rios each week. A full list of their locations can be found on the StemExpress website.

Note: This testing protocol is available only to those students and employees who have an approved medical or religious exemption and a documented accommodation that requires weekly testing.

Can I test at a location other than a StemExpress location?

No, we require that testing occur at a StemExpress location. This is so we can automatically receive the results.

A full list of locations can be found on the StemExpress website.

Note: This testing protocol is available only to those students and employees who have an approved medical or religious exemption and a documented accommodation that requires weekly testing.

Do I need to bring my student or employee ID to my testing appointment at StemExpress?

No. StemExpress has a list of all students and employees who have approved exemptions and can be tested as part of an approved accommodation. You will need to show a valid photo ID and provide your wID (for example, w0123456) at the time of your test.

Note: This testing protocol is available only to those students and employees who have an approved medical or religious exemption and a documented accommodation that requires weekly testing.

FAQ: Facilities and Sanitation

What is the process to "ready" a building? What types of inspection, testing, and replacement of equipment will occur – daily, weekly, and monthly – before the start of fall 2021?

COVID mitigation measures to prepare our facilities primarily involve building ventilation and air filtration systems, but Facilities Management (FM) would also do a full HVAC system functions test and inspection for each building prior to occupancy (as outlined in Making Our Buildings Resilient During COVID-19).

Before the pandemic, we already regularly performed these system checks throughout the year, typically coinciding with filter replacements (every four months). Now, we will perform additional checks before reopening facilities. These checks help ensure systems are performing the necessary CDC/ASHRAE recommended air exchanges and sufficient outside fresh air is being pulled into the buildings.

Before reopening a facility, we will also verify that we can remotely communicate with the building's HVAC controls through the District's Energy Management System (EMS). Read Making Our Buildings Resilient During COVID-19 to learn more.

When will all buildings have air filtration equivalent to N95 masks?

All buildings that are currently occupied have MERV-13 filters, the industry standard for COVID-19 mitigation. MERV-13 filters are recommended because they can trap smaller particles, including viruses, and are equivalent to N95 masks with regards to protection and air quality.

In the event a building's HVAC system cannot accommodate the MERV-13 filters, we are performing additional building "flushing" two hours prior and two hours after occupancy as recommended by CDC/ASHRAE for these situations. As more buildings open to accommodate more people coming on to campus, we will perform HVAC system checks and filter changes prior to occupancy.

Buildings are being prioritized in the order they will be occupied with the goal of all buildings being ready (with system checks and filter replacements complete) no later than July 31, 2021, so we are prepared for whatever on-campus activities take place in the fall. Read Making Our Buildings Resilient During COVID-19 to learn more.

March 1 Reopening Planning Report

Based on engagement with key stakeholders – including the board of trustees and labor and senate partners as appropriate – the Los Rios Reopening Planning Team submitted a refined report titled, A Framework for Reopening In-Person Instruction, Student Services, and Administrative Services. The report outlines a detailed and specific framework and plan for reopening to the chancellor and college presidents.

The Los Rios Reopening Planning Team also released an initial Reopening Planning Report in January 2021 after gathering feedback at Flex Week Reopening Plan Listening Sessions, through this website, and in other campus- and district-wide discussions.

As public health information evolves and vaccination rates increase, our planning parameters can and will change.

Input and Feedback Form

Provide input and feedback on the reopening report or the reopening planning process in general. All submissions will be publicly visible.