Coronavirus/COVID-19 Information

Maintaining Educational Continuity in the Context of COVID-19

Academic leadership provides an update to faculty on the cancellation of in-person classes March 13–24.


To: Faculty
From: Deb Larson, Provost and Vice President for Academic Affairs
Chiara Ferrari, Chair, Academic Senate
Daniel Grassian, Vice Provost for Academic Programs
Tim Sistrunk, President, California Faculty Association, Chico State Chapter

As we continue to monitor the rapid spread of the Coronavirus (COVID-19), the health and safety of our students and the continuation of their education come first. On Friday, March 6, we sent a message on instructional continuity (PDF) in the context of COVID-19 to faculty. Yesterday, March 10, Interim Director of Academic Technology Kathy Fernandes sent a message (PDF) detailing instructional continuity resources provided by the Teaching and Learning Program (TLP). We urge you to read those messages, if you haven’t already done so.

Meanwhile, the Chancellor’s Office (CO) has recently issued a recommendation to all CSU campuses that senior leadership should prepare delivery of courses and programs for non-face-to-face modalities should the need arise. To comply with the CO recommendation, Chico State will cancel in-person classes for three days (Friday, March 13, Monday, March 23, and Tuesday, March 24) to allow faculty time to prepare courses for non-face-to-face modalities.No exams or assignments can be due during this time.Classes will resume in-person on Wednesday, March 25.

Faculty are expected to use these three days (March 13, March 23, and March 24) to prepare for instructional continuity of their courses (e.g., transitioning from face-to-face instruction to an alternative format that allows for the completion of the course learning outcomes). Service activities during these three days will go on as planned. Please note that, upon the recommendation of the CO, “courses already being delivered in an online format or other non-in-person manner should continue without disruption.”

On March 13, 23, and 24, your college and department leadership may hold meetings to discuss and to help you determine the best methods for instructional continuity of your class(es). Also during these three days and spring break, we will provide campus resources to help you plan for this transition. While TLP has already provided materials on their website to help, their staff will be available for consultation and they will be providing additional online materials and sessions about digital learning tools. Our staff in the Office of Accessible Technology and Services (OATS) will also be available for consultation about how to make any newly digital material accessible to all our students.

By the end of the day on Tuesday, March 24, faculty will be expected to submit to their chairs a description of how they would continue instruction digitally or in alternative format, should in-person classes be canceled. This description should focus on how the course learning outcomes will be fulfilled while utilizing a digital or alternative format.

In addition to the above, faculty should also consider how the course content will be delivered, how assignments and course expectations (e.g., attendance) will be adjusted, how to engage with students, and how to accommodate students who may fall ill or have challenges engaging with digital material. TLP staff, as well as your respective chair and dean, can help you with the above.

We have great faith in you and in our mutual commitment to student success. We understand and appreciate all that you are doing and will continue to do for our students during this unprecedented time.

Should you have any specific questions or concerns, you may contact your dean.