College of the Canyons has announced its plans to shift to online courses for the fall 2020 semester and have distance learning be the new norm for the remainder of the calendar year.
In a statement issued Wednesday, officials said the decision to cancel was due to the uncertainty related to COVID-19.
“The health and safety of our students, faculty, staff and community continue to be of paramount importance,” said College of the Canyons Chancellor Dianne G. Van Hook. “As we look ahead to the fall semester, we are working to identify solutions that provide a wide range of opportunities for current students to continue their educations, enable community members to obtain the job skills needed to secure employment, as well as give a new group of students – our future alumni – the chance to join us as we kick off the 2020-2021 academic year on Aug. 24.”
The college moved to a distance learning model March 16 and had canceled all in-person events, including graduation. The decision to do so is similar to dozens of other colleges throughout the state who have also opted to cancel in-person classes in both the spring and fall semester.
Last week, California State University Chancellor Timothy White said the 23 CSU campuses would also be canceling all in-person classes for the fall semester. The University of California has yet to make an announcement about what will happen on the UC campuses.
COC expects to offer more than 1,800 courses, as well as more than 800 courses over the summer.
Approximately 7% of career technical education will be offered in a hybrid mode, and select labs will be held on campus, according to officials.
“The college’s decision was made after extensive consultation with health experts and collaboration with faculty members, classified staff, incident command staff, and the college’s COVID-19 Task Force,” said the release.
“We will continue to offer quality online and remote experiences and do so within health guidelines as we mitigate health risks and help to control the spread of coronavirus so that we can all resume education, work, and recreation in the Santa Clarita Valley as soon as it is safe to do so,” said Van Hook.