BRIEF: Task forces prepare for online instruction

The four task forces that are continuing Pierce operations, following the campus closure in response to COVID-19, met over Zoom today at noon.

“We are trying to make sure that our communication is cohesive, it’s consistent, it’s in line with what is going on, not just with the district, but with what is being recommended at the federal, state and county levels,” said Pierce College President Alexis Montevirgen.

Plant Facilities Operation Manager Rodney Allen said only about one-third of his staff is available to deep clean the campus buildings due to COVID-19 worries.

As of Wednesday, 12 custodians and two supervisors are working on disinfecting the campus. The Child Development Center is one of the buildings completed.

“Basically, they are our heroes,” Health Center Director Beth Benne said.

Sheri Berger, who is on the Continuity of Academic/Student Operations Team, said that about 76 courses offered at Pierce have been suspended for now due to not transitioning online. This affects classes such as welding, machine shop and Equine Science.

Pierce will receive about 10 Chromebook laptops next week for students who have not yet received their laptop after applying for the Los Angeles Community College District (LACCD) Laptop Scholarship, according to Vice President of Student Services Earic Dixon-Peters.

The General Communication Team has created new tabs on the Pierce website that shares COVID-19 information specifically for students and faculty.

They are also finalizing a frequently asked questions tab just for Pierce-related information and will feature a link to the Frequently Asked Questions tab on the LACCD website.

Because Monday is the first day of instruction following spring break, Vice President of Administrative Services Rolf Schleicher said the goal is to have students answer their own questions through the Pierce website by then.

“We have 20,000 students. We have to really think about being a big operation like a Universal Studios or Disneyland,” Schleicher said. “I think it’s really important to have answers for those students that are concise and to the point.”