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Students & Families

FALL 2020 Campus Reopening Plan
This plan has been reviewed by the State Council of Higher Education and has been found to be compliant in containing the required components of the "Higher Education Reopening Guidance," which was developed in consultation with the Virginia Department of Health.

Students & Families

Richard Bland College’s mission is to actively engage every student in the learning process and to deliver a consistently high-quality educational experience. To achieve these goals, the College is preparing for the safe return of students, faculty and staff for fall 2020.

The College is implementing a phase-in with safeguards in all buildings and across campus, along with workplace practices that are carefully designed to protect staff, faculty and student health and adhere to Virginia’s Public Health Guidelines for Higher Education, VDH and CDC recommendations. All RBC students (commuter & residential) will receive Safe & Secure COVID training at orientation or online. Training, conducted by the Student Success team, will occur prior to student move-in and the beginning of on-campus classes.

RBC will offer two semester options – fall 2020 and spring 2021 – to provide maximum flexibility for students, as well as blended class options. The College will offer an online winter session.

All RBC staff, faculty and students are responsible to one another by committing to honor all safeguards necessary for a secure academic and work environment.

  • Academics

    • Classes will be offered in a synchronous remote face-to-face format, giving students the option to take the course in-seat or online. This structure includes:

      • Ability to rotate students in-seat or online as needed
      • Pivot to strictly online in the event of a resurgence
      • Fall break canceled
      • Complete semester following Thanksgiving online only
      • Additional time allotted between classes to allow:
        • Student/faculty cleaning of space
        • Decrease traffic flow in buildings
      • Monday/Wednesday and Tuesday/Thursday class format will allow:
        • Deep cleaning of buildings on Friday
        • Small group testing and labs on Friday
      • Faculty office hours will be remote or held in large classroom
      • Increased number of online course offerings

      Specifics about each teaching mode are found below:

      Mode Description On Campus
      Blended Live video lectures and in-class lectures (some with staggered attendance) 1-2 times every week or two weeks with flexibility
      Hybrid Live class session with outside class activities online 1-2 times a week
      Online Asynchronous Coursework is completed online with due dates but without recurring virtual class sessions at specific dates and times None
      Online Synchronous Coursework is completed online with recurring virtual class sessions at specific dates and times (1-3 times a week) None
      Traditional In-class meetings at assigned hours 2-3 times a week

      When you view your schedule, you will know the mode of each course by looking at the section number:

      • All classes in BARN 100, SSHE 112, and labs are traditional
      • Online Asynchronous courses are section numbers 50 and 51
      • “50S” denotes Online Synchronous and specific meeting times are assigned
      • Hybrid courses have “Hy” for the section
  • Student Success

    • Richard Bland College is committed to 100% Student Success. While activities will be adjusted to comply with Virginia’s Public Health Guidelines for Higher Education, VDH and CDC guidelines, RBC will strive to provide students with a complete college experience. All RBC students (commuter & residential) will receive Safe & Secure COVID training at orientation or online. Training, conducted by the Student Success team, will occur prior to student move-in and the beginning of on-campus classes. Other protective measures include:

      • Limited in-person gatherings
      • Campus clubs, Student Conduct Board, Career/Internship fairs held virtually
      • Campus events will require RSVP’s to maintain recommended capacity
      • Online tutoring offered with options for face-to-face tutoring when necessary
      • Semi-weekly shuttles by reservation only
      • Library Services consistent with social distancing and other recommendations from Virginia’s Public Health Guidelines for Higher Education, VDH and CDC
      • Chromebooks and Mifi hotspots available and signed out by appointment at stac@rbc.eduChromebook Guidelines / Hotspot Guidelines
      • Bridge Program students allowed to reserve RBC vehicle to travel to W&M
      • Counseling services provided remotely and by appointment – counciling@rbc.edu
      • Virtual testing for class placement by appointment
      • Medical transport provided by Dinwiddie County Emergency Services (911)
      • Disability services training provided to faculty online
      • Agreement established with the Virginia Department of Health for on-campus COVID testing as needed
      • Agreement established with Patient First and Southside Regional Medical Center to provide student medical services
      • Nurse consultations to students through Patient First
      • One-on-one advising services held remotely or by appointment in larger on-campus space
      • Students who miss a class due to illness or to COVID-19 exposure:
        • Should immediately inform their instructors that they will not be in class
        • Are not required to present a medical excuse unless the absence is for longer than two weeks
        • Are responsible for making up all missed coursework. Students who contact their instructors as described above and make-up their work​ in accordance with instructor policies should not be penalized
        • If able, are expected to continue attending class remotely, if the course has that option, and are expected to continue to submit assignments electronically if possible
      • ADA consultant will contact high-risk students to determine sense of safety on-campus
      • Students required to sign health and safety pledge
      • Learner Mentors moved to larger spaces for advising
  • Facilities

    • The primary goal of the RBC Facilities Management Department is to provide a clean, safe and comfortable environment for students, faculty and staff.

      • PPE kits given to students, faculty and staff at the start of the semester
      • Kits include:
        • washable face coverings,
        • hand sanitizer
        • information packets
      • Sneeze guards installed across campus in all buildings as needed
      • Classrooms, library and common areas rearranged for social distancing
      • All campus facilities cleaned at an increased level with extra focus on high touch/high traffic areas
      • Cleaning supplies available to staff and faculty upon request
      • Training provided to students, faculty and staff on maintaining a clean environment
      • Signs regarding safety standards and hand sanitizer placed in all campus buildings
      • Contract with ServPro established to disinfect rooms of any student, staff or faculty who tests positive or exposed to COVID-19
      • Social distancing tiles installed across campus
  • Residential Life

    • Residence Life and Housing will continue to provide a safe and secure living environment and support the academic and personal success of residential students. Move-in for students will be conducted over three days to allow for smaller groups to arrive on-campus. The Office of Residence Life will notify all students as to individual move-in times.

      • All students will be required to provide a health assessment prior to move-in day (assessment forms will be sent to students from the residential life team)
      • Students must be symptomatic free prior to moving on-campus
      • No more than six students per suite in residential buildings
      • Residence Life staff will monitor residential students for adherence to safety and health standards determined by Virginia’s Public Health Guidelines for Higher Education, VDH and CDC
      • Visitation and gathering guidelines established consistent with Virginia’s Public Health Guidelines for Higher Education, VDH and CDC
      • Dedicated rooms reserved for quarantine and self-isolation
      • Agreement established with Days Inn (Prince George County) to provide additional rooms for students requiring quarantine or isolation if needed
      • Students in quarantine or isolation monitored by staff and meals delivered
      • Agreements established with VDH (Crater Health District), Patient First and Southside Regional Medical Center for COVID-19 testing, contact tracing and related services, i.e. training, flu clinics/shots
      • Students testing positive with COVID-19 will be isolated by VDH order
      • Dining services in the café limited to 100 seats, maintaining social distance – staff will monitor
      • Sneeze guards installed in café and all service areas
      • Meal plans available
      • Grab and Go food available
      • Outdoor seating established
  • International Students

    • All international students will be housed in single rooms, with 4 or less students in each suite. Those students who are traveling from outside the U.S. will be housed together, apart from all domestic RBC students and international students who are currently living in this country. International students who have been living in the U.S. for more than 14 days prior to RBC move-in will not be required to quarantine and may attend on-campus classes.

      Those students who are traveling from outside the U.S. will be required to quarantine in place (RBC dorm room) for 14 days prior to attending classes in-seat or visiting any public places on or off-campus. Online classes will be offered during the quarantine period. If a student remains symptom free during this time, all quarantine restrictions will be lifted at the end of 14 days. If a student does develop COVID symptoms during quarantine, they will be isolated in separate housing on-campus until the criteria for return has been met.

  • Good Hygiene and Heightened Cleaning & Disinfection

    • Together as Statesmen, everyone has the responsibility to cooperate, respect and work together to keep the RBC community safe. The following cleanliness and enhanced sanitation measures have been initiated throughout the RBC campus:

      • Students, faculty and staff must wear masks indoors and in shared spaces
      • Everyone on-campus will be provided with a personal protective equipment kit at the start of the semester that includes:
        • Washable face coverings
        • Hand sanitizer
        • Information packets
      • Maintain social distance of at least 6ft. at all times
      • Practicing good hygiene signs, hand sanitizer stations, and directional tiles installed in all buildings
      • Training provided to students, faculty and staff on maintaining a clean environment
      • Self-monitor for COVID-19 symptoms, report any COVID symptoms to HR, Student Success or Residential Life, and self-quarantine if necessary
      • IR Infrared Digital Non-Contact Thermometers located throughout campus and the Statesman Touchless Temperature Check station located in the library for daily checks
      • Stay home from class, work or other gatherings if you are symptomatic or are running a fever of 100.4°F or above
      • Classrooms, residential and other campus spaces have been rearranged for social distancing and sneeze guards installed as needed
      • Clean and sanitize personal items such as phones, keyboards, desks and workspaces regularly – all students, staff and faculty are required to clean personal spaces (including classrooms) on arrival and departure. There will be a 45-minute break between each class for cleaning to occur. Additional cleaning supplies available upon request
      • Deep cleaning of all buildings will take place every Friday
      • Contract with ServPro established to disinfect rooms of any student, staff or faculty who tests positive or exposed to COVID-19
  • Anti-Stigma Training

    • Stigma regarding COVID hurts all by creating fear and anger instead of focusing on the disease. Anti-stigma training will be required for all students, staff and faculty prior to the start of fall classes. Training will be provided by Student Success and Human Resources following the anti-stigma guidelines developed by the CDC.

  • Tracking, Testing, Tracing

    • In an effort to prevent COVID outbreaks and spread, Richard Bland College is working with the Crater Health District, Southside Regional Medical Center and Patient First for COVID-19 symptom tracking, testing and contact tracing based on the recommendations from Virginia’s Public Health Guidelines for Higher Education, VDH and CDC. With the goal of early identification and prevention of a second outbreak, the College is dedicated to keeping the RBC community safe and healthy.

      All students, staff and faculty are required to self-monitor daily for COVID-19 symptoms, report any COVID symptoms to Human Resources, Student Success or Residential Life, and self-quarantine if necessary. IR Infrared Digital Non-Contact Thermometers are available throughout campus and the Statesman Touchless Temperature Check station located in the library for daily checks. Commuter students, staff and faculty must stay home if symptomatic or are running a fever of 100.4°F or above. Residential students with symptoms will be moved to dedicated rooms reserved for quarantine and self-isolation.

      The College will refer symptomatic students, staff and faculty to the following fixed testing sites in the Petersburg area as recommended by the Crater Health District:

      Central Virginia Health Services
      (FQHC – FREE)
      321C Poplar Drive, Petersburg
      Monday morning: 10am – noon and Thursday afternoon: 1:30pm – 3:30pm
      804-733-5591 to register – Drive thru

      Pathways
      1200 West Washington St., Petersburg
      Wednesday evenings from 6pm – 7:30pm
      804-863-1652 Option 1 to register (FREE) – Drive thru

      The College will track all students, staff and faculty reporting COVID symptoms, highly recommend that those with symptoms be tested for COVID and immediately report all positive COVID cases to the Virginia Department of Health (Crater Health District). Contact tracing will be provided by the Crater Health District for residential students and commuter students, staff and faculty living in the Crater Health District region. Contact tracing for those living outside the Crater region will be handled by the VDH Health Districts for each designated locality.

  • If COVID-19 Cases Appear On-Campus

    • It is anticipated that positive cases may appear in college communities. In the event of this happening, Richard Bland College will take the following steps:

      • Move student to separate room or off-campus to quarantine/self-isolate
      • Arrange medical testing, treatment and tracking via agreements with the Virginia Department of Health (Crater Health District), Southside Regional Medical Center and/or Patient First
      • Deliver meals to quarantined/isolated students
      • Provide cleaning supplies to quarantined/isolated students
      • Provide academic support to stay on-track with classes
      • ServPro will sanitize student dorm, classroom, and any spaces visited
      • Work with VDH (Crater Health District) to determine if any other measures need to be taken
  • New Student Orientation

    • Richard Bland College is looking forward to welcoming all new and returning students to campus in August. New student orientations will be held virtually and has been designed to prepare students for a successful transition and integration into college and campus life. RBC encourages all new students to participate in orientation prior to classes beginning.

      All RBC students (commuter & residential) will receive Safe & Secure COVID training at orientation or online. Training, conducted by the Student Success team, will occur prior to student move-in and the beginning of on-campus classes.

  • Athletics

    • Intercollegiate athletics has been suspended for the 2020-21 academic year to ensure the health and safety of RBC student-athletes based on the most recent data and projections from the American Medical Association and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

Questions?

The RBC Safe & Secure team encourages you to review all current information available for Health & Safety, Students & Families, Faculty & Staff, Alumni & Friends, and Frequently Asked Questions. Guidelines and recommendations are changing, so please visit this site often to view updated information. If you have questions, please click the box below to submit.

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