Tarleton releases safety plans for the fall
Tarleton State University is doing everything they can to keep students and faculty safe while still maintaining and creating a student-focused community. Tarleton has put together many safety practices to help slow the spread of COVID-19.
The A&M system was able to get a supply of COVID-19 tests to send to each of their campuses, including Tarleton, once a month. These tests can be used to test students, faculty, and staff who may have been exposed to COVID-19 or are symptomatic. Oral cavity swab techniques will be used and results should be available within 30 hours.
For faculty, Tarleton has also purchased face masks and shields to use in classrooms, as required by the Governor’s executive order.
“Meetings [conducted on campus] should be conducted by zoom or other remote connectivity methods. Groups of fewer than 10 may meet in person provided they can adhere to social distancing and face coverings are worn,” Tarleton Academic Affairs said.
Tarleton also recommends meeting virtually but if people choose to meet in person social distancing and face masks are required.
Classroom doors, building hallways and stairwells may be labeled as entrances or exits to create a one-way travel in order to limit contact between people. Elevators and areas where people congregate will have limited capacity to minimize contact with others as well.
“Classrooms will be set up for social distancing. This means the capacity of many of our classrooms will be greatly reduced. A team of individuals are currently evaluating each classroom for social distancing capacity. Some classes will be relocated in order to accommodate enrollment and assist with social distancing requirements,” Tarleton Academic Affairs said.
Tarleton is offering two methods of teaching this fall, online and a HyFlex model.
“The HyFlex mode is a highly flexible hybrid course. Hybrid courses are typically a blend of online and face-to-face learning. The HyFlex course is a blend of online, face-to-face, remote synchronous and remote asynchronous learning. Since classrooms are configured for social distancing, not all enrolled students will be able to attend class at the same time. This will be particularly true for high enrollment classes.
“It is our plan to try to enable each student to attend a face-to-face class for each course at least once a week… Most classes will be able to split the class in half or thirds for their face-to-face assigned day. For example, if you have a Tuesday/Thursday class, half the students would attend face-to-face on Tuesday while the other half participate in that session through remote synchronous instruction. On Thursday, the students will switch. Faculty members will need to communicate with students prior to the first day of class to let them know which day of the week they should attend the face-to-face classroom… All classes will be recorded and posted in canvas so any enrolled student may view them in an asynchronous fashion,” Tarleton Academic Affairs said.
Tarleton has also set up a weekly COVID-19 email update. They will be sending an update to students and employees every Wednesday.
This week’s update stated, “Four new positive cases have been reported for the week of July 26-Aug. 1, 2020. To date, 40 direct and indirect university-related cases have been reported, with 36 recovered and four in isolation.”
Tarleton is doing everything possible to keep students and faculty safe while still providing quality education. University officials are constantly surveying the situation and will make changes in safety procedures as needed. Texan News will provide updates as more information is released.