Remote teaching began March 23 across the district: here’s what you need to know

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Two signs are posted Monday on the doors of the Victory Center reminding students that face-to-face appointments with their advisers are canceled this week and what students should do to prevent contracting the Covid-19 virus. The Alamo Colleges decided last week to extend spring break another week and allow faculty time to prepare to teach classes remotely beginning March 23 for the rest of the semester. Geoffrey Hovatter

By Noah Alcala Bach

Alamo Colleges has not extended the traditional 16-week spring semester, but Flex 2 began March 30 and ends May 7.

Libraries, computer labs and other campus facilities are closed until May 16, however the library is still available online Monday through Thursday 7:30 a.m. to 7 p.m. and Friday 7:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. via zoom.

The Alamo Colleges, like most post-secondary institutions, moved to Zoom for online instruction.

The district encourages students who don’t have access to high-speed internet to come to campus parking lots and sit in their cars using the campus wi-fi.

“Each of our five colleges will have a designated area in their parking lots where free wi-fi will be provided for students. Directional signage will guide students to the locations,” read a March 16 statement from the district. “Students are encouraged to stay in vehicles and practice social distancing.”

Technical courses, such as mortuary science, kinesiology, sculpture, nursing and others, are still figuring out how to transition to online learning.

“There’s accrediting considerations so we’re working with each particular class and the faculty associated,” Kristi Wyatt, associate vice chancellor of communications, said. “So, students in those types of classes will receive information from their instructor on how that class will proceed.”

The district has also designated a part of their website to COVID-19 updates and sent out corresponding emails.

“We have tried to do our best to communicate every known resource. We are updating our website literally by the minute as new information becomes available to us,” Wyatt said.

In a notice to Alamo Colleges employees on March 19, the district announced three Alamo Colleges staff members had been exposed to COVID-19.

The three employees worked at Palo Alto, St. Philip’s, and district support operations. The employees were asked to wait to return to work until after a self-quarantine period and remote work ends.

There are no known confirmed cases of COVID-19 in the district. Wyatt said she has not received any new information on the exposed employees.

Fox 29, San Antonio’s Fox affiliate, said in an online article that none of the three were tested.

“Just like every other company, every other organization, we’re having to look at the changing situation daily,” Wyatt said. “What’s true today may not be true tomorrow.”


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