This page is updated frequently as new information becomes available.

Frequently Asked Questions

The Los Rios colleges have begun 100% remote operations, including moving all classes and student services online until further notice.

Classes and Instruction

Will labs, clinicals, practicums, and work experience classes be taught on-ground or online?

The move to fully online summer and fall schedules was made, in part, due to the recognition that social distancing guidelines are still in place, and likely to be in place into the fall. Additionally, concerns about our access to the testing, contact-tracing, or personal protective equipment necessary to open our campuses broadly have led to understandable questions about the safety of our students, faculty, and staff.

As a result, almost all of our classes will be taught online and any exceptions will be extremely limited and only allowable if online instruction is not an option and we can ensure that appropriate safety measures are in place. For example, we are working with health care providers on specific safety trainings to allow for nursing clinical to continue on ground, with the supervision of trained healthcare professionals. Without similar provisions or facilities that can accommodate social distancing, it will be difficult for labs, practicums, work experience, or other facility-dependent classes to be taught on campus. We encourage faculty to work with their deans on creative solutions to continue instruction online.

How long will remote operations last?

In late April, Governor Newsom released information about his four-stage plan for "re-opening" California. The governor was appropriately wary of setting firm timetables, with the recognition that going slow will help us all prevent a catastrophic resurgence in the COVID-19 virus.

Similarly, at Los Rios, we are beginning to contemplate how and when to start easing back into limited on-ground services, taking our lead – as always – from public health experts. We expect that we will continue in fully remote operations through at least July 5, with the probability that remote operations will continue well into summer or even early fall. As the situation and advice from experts evolves, we will continue to reassess and consider discrete exceptions in areas of greatest needs for our students that cannot be operationalized or sustained remotely. Counsel from our constituent leaders will be critical in these discussions and we look forward to working with faculty, staff, and student representatives to provide input on the best path forward.

When will fall class schedules be available?

Due to ongoing public health concerns, the fall schedule will be fully online with extremely limited exceptions for courses that cannot be converted to online, as we have done for the summer semester. We are working through options for the small number of courses that cannot be converted, such as some Career Education and other facility-dependent classes.

If you have technology or other needs, then there are some tools and resources available on our online services page. If you aren't familiar with Canvas, then use the following resources to learn how to use the system:

Enrollment, Financial Aid, and Refunds

How will this affect students' financial aid?

At this time of great need for our students, Los Rios is doing everything possible to continue critical financial aid services to students.

Financial Aid Disbursements

The financial aid offices at each Los Rios college continue to support students. We continue to receive student requests for financial support, review files, and award eligible students. If you are in financial need, then complete the Free Application for Federal Financial Aid (FAFSA). After you have completed the FAFSA, you can monitor your eServices for further instruction. If you are not a US citizen or an eligible non-citizen, then you should complete the California Dream Act Application (CADAA).

Changes in Federal Financial Aid Policy

The Department of Education continues to review policies that impact students during this pandemic. Any changes by the Department of Education will be implemented by our colleges. We will provide updates impacting individual students via eServices.

Federal Work Study

So far, the federal government has not indicated any cuts to Federal Work Study programs. We will continue to do everything possible to maximize those resources and make them available to as many students as possible.

How will this affect the student payment plan?

Per CASHnet, for the period of March 23, 2020 to July 1, 2020, students will not be charged if they fail to make an installment plan payment on time.

Do students still have access to the Universal Transit Pass (UTP) for summer and fall?

Yes. Los Rios' agreement with Sacramento Regional Transit (SacRT) is still in place for summer and fall semesters, as SacRT is still providing regional service. Many students at the Los Rios colleges also rely on SacRT service to get to work or for other personal transportation needs.

Because some SacRT routes were reduced this summer, RT provided students with two full fare Daily Passes (a face value of $14) in addition to their summer UTP (a face value of $60). If their routes are impacted this fall, Los Rios will work with them on similar accommodations for students.

Because our campuses are not open for the distribution of Student Access Cards, SacRT is distributing passes directly to students. Once students pay their summer UTP fee, they will be sent a link to the digital summer UTP request form. Once complete, the UTP will be sent to the mailing address on file in your Los Rios eServices account.

How do students get their summer 2020 Universal Transit Pass (UTP)?

Students enrolled in the Summer 2020 session pay for the Summer 2020 Universal Transit Pass (UTP) fee as part of their mandatory fees. The UTP allows eligible students to use Regional Transit bus and light rail services at a lower price. To receive your Summer 2020 UTP, you must submit the Summer UTP Request Form. After your eligibility has been confirmed, the Summer 2020 UTP and two full-fare Daily Passes (daily passes have a face value of $14), will be sent to the mailing address on file in your Los Rios eServices account.

The UTP applies to all SacRT services, including light rail and buses. The UTP is valid 24 hours per day, seven days per week, for any purpose. As the region continues to respond to COVID-19, SacRT has temporarily reduced service. Learn more about SacRT services.

Spring 2020

How will class withdrawals for spring 2020 be processed?

Students whose spring class(es) were been cancelled or who were unable to continue with their class(es) because of the transition were eligible for an Excused Withdrawal (EW). Excused Withdrawals may show up on a student's transcript, but there are no negative implications for grade point average (GPA) or future financial aid.

Any student who received an EW as a result of this circumstance will get a full refund on any out-of-pocket tuition fees. All students who submitted a withdrawal request between March 12 and May 20 are eligible for an EW.

If you have questions about your request for an EW, then please contact your college Admissions and Records office.

Were spring classes eligible to be taken as Pass/No Pass?

To provide as much flexibility as possible for students during the spring 2020 semester, we temporarily reduced restrictions on students' ability to take classes "Pass/No Pass" for the spring semester:

  • Students were able to take as many classes Pass/No Pass as they liked in spring 2020 (in normal circumstances, students are limited to only one course per term).
  • Additionally, we temporarily extended the deadline for students to switch a class to Pass/No Pass until the last day of the spring semester – Wednesday, May 20.
Pass/No Pass Transferability

Some Pass/No Pass courses may not transfer. While we hope that this additional flexibility was helpful while navigating these uncertain times, transfer institutions like the CSU and UC systems may not accept classes taken Pass/No Pass.

As a reminder, Pass/No Pass was not the only option for students struggling with the transition to online or remote instruction. Students whose class(es) were cancelled or who were unable to continue with their class(es) because of the transition were eligible for an Excused Withdrawal (EW). Excused Withdrawals may show up on a student's transcript, but there are no negative implications for grade point average (GPA) or future financial aid.

Any student who received an EW as a result of this circumstance will get a full refund on any out-of-pocket tuition fees. All students who submitted a withdrawal request between March 12 and May 20 were eligible for an EW.

Per Los Rios regulation R-7252: Academic Standards and Progress (PDF), students selecting the Pass/No-Pass option must get a "C" or better in the class in order to pass the course.

Will student fees be refunded?

Los Rios instituted a new refund policy for spring 2020 to make sure students were treated fairly in these unique circumstances.

Tuition Refunds for Excused Withdrawals

Any student who received an Excused Withdrawal (EW) as a result of their class(es) being cancelled or the student's inability to participate in the online or remote class(es) was eligible for a full refund on any out-of-pocket tuition fees. Once the EW has been processed and finalized, no additional action is needed by the student to secure their refund. If the student paid by credit card, then a refund credit will be issued to the credit card they used. All other methods of payment will be refunded by check and mailed to the address on file with the Admissions and Records Office.

Parking Passes

We provided a partial refund of approximately 56% of all spring semester parking permits, based on the amount of days left in the term at the time of our move to remote operations. No action is needed by the student to secure their refund. If the student paid by credit card, then a refund credit will be issued to the credit card they used. All other methods of payment will be refunded by check and mailed to the address on file with the Admissions and Records Office.

Health Services Fees

We provided a partial refund of approximately 56% of all spring semester Health Services Fees, based on the amount of days left in the term at the time of our move to remote operations. No action is needed by the student to secure their refund. If the student paid by credit card, then a refund credit will be issued to the credit card they used. All other methods of payment will be refunded by check and mailed to the address on file with the Admissions and Records Office.

Student Representation Fees

The student representation fee is either $1 or $2 depending on the time of enrollment and it was not refunded.

Universal Transportation Pass (UTP) Fees

SacRT provided a 20% refund of the UTP fees collected for the spring 2020 semester. The 20% refund was calculated based on 100% availability of SacRT services for the first half of the semester and approximately 60% of our standard service levels beginning March 23, 2020. No action is needed by the student to secure their refund. If the student paid by credit card, then a refund credit will be issued to the credit card they used. All other methods of payment will be refunded by check and mailed to the address on file with the Admissions and Records Office.

Timeline for Getting Refunds

Most refunds were issued by the end of the semester. If you have questions about your refund or eligibility, then contact your college Admissions and Records Office.

Activities, Events, and Athletics

Why are college events and athletic games being cancelled?

Based upon the California Department of Public Health March 16 guidance regarding gatherings, all gatherings should be postponed or cancelled. A "gathering" is any event or convening that brings together people in a single room or single space at the same time, such as an auditorium, stadium, arena, large conference room, meeting hall, cafeteria, or any other indoor or outdoor space.

The California Community College Athletic Association has immediately postponed practices outside of regularly scheduled classes as well as competition for all spring sports. Read more on the decision.

Will commencement ceremonies be held?

Commencement is one of the best traditions on any college campus, so we were incredibly disappointed to announce last month that the ceremonies would have to be cancelled as a result of the COVID-19 public health crisis. In a recent districtwide survey, graduating students overwhelmingly expressed little interest in holding any virtual ceremony. As a result, there will not be a 2020 graduation ceremony at any Los Rios college. Graduating students will be provided the opportunity to walk at future class' commencement ceremonies.

That does not, however, mean that we can't celebrate the outstanding achievements of our graduating students this spring. The colleges will be mailing each and every graduating student an official commencement program, a letter from your college president, and your official Class of 2020 tassel.

We will also be creating a number of opportunities for graduates to tell their personal stories and share this experience with their classmates and loved ones on the college's official social media channels. Make sure to follow your college now on Instagram, Facebook, and Twitter so you don't miss anything.

Can employees or students travel on official college or district business?

All out-of-district travel has been frozen. The public health status of different communities, even within the state of California, is evolving rapidly and it is imperative that we do everything we can to mitigate unnecessary risk. If you have travel scheduled and believe it is urgent and essential, then please work with your supervisor to discuss a possible exception.

Can students, employees, and the public still use college facilities?

As of March 18, all college facilities, including performing arts venues and outdoor athletic fields, will be closed for all uses. 

Student Support Services

How will offices be able to verify a student's identity remotely?

Our Admissions and Records and Financial Aid offices have implemented a student PIN on eServices that will allow students to verify their identity so that they can discuss student records over the phone. We have also created a video tutorial to help students use this new feature.

Are child development centers staying open?

On-campus child development centers are closed. We recognize that this has a serious impact on those who count on these services for child care, particularly at a time when families have even greater needs than usual. Other public and private providers throughout our region and state taking similar actions.

What online supports are available for DSPS students?

Our college DSPS offices are working to expand and supplement existing services for online students to accommodate the increased demand. Students should call or email their college DSPS office to learn about what services are available:

How can students get additional emergency assistance?

Students may apply for the Los Rios Colleges Foundation Student Emergency Fund. To help get money into students’ hands faster, we have streamlined the Student Emergency Fund application process and it is now online. The Foundation has also lowered the maximum award amount to $500 to allow us to serve more students.

Employment and Budget

Visit Los Rios' budget updates page for information on the COVID-19 impact on Los Rios' budget and employment implications.

Additional Information

We encourage employees and students to monitor this page for continued updates. The following websites also contain a wealth of helpful information about coronavirus: