Blackhawk Technical College in a news release announced a multi-stage plan to fully reopen college operations.
The college closed to the public on March 18 and all instruction moved online (Stage 1). The college Crisis Incident Command Team and an emergency preparedness committee manage the college’s response to the pandemic and look at recommendations by local, state and federal. They then make policy and operational recommendations to the college leadership team.
There are seven stages in the college’s plan to reopen. Currently the college is in Stage 3 with plans to advance to Stage 4 beginning on June 8. Dates have not yet been established for Stages 5 – 7. All dates are subject to change based on the impact of the pandemic.
A detailed description of the stages can be found at www.blackhawk.edu/coronavirus.
Below is a summary of the stages:
- Stage 1 (March 18): The college closed to the public and the majority of instruction moved online. Most employees worked remotely with limited, essential employees working on campus. All events and activities canceled or moved to a virtual format.
- Stage 2 (April 27): Students in designated Health Sciences and Public Safety classes returned to campus to complete hands-on labs/classes and simulation activities. Safety protocols were established to include screening before building entrance, required PPE such as eye protection and facemasks, physical distancing used in the classroom/lab, and tracking movement and interactions of everyone in the building. College remains closed to the public; most employees continue to work remotely.
- Stage 3 (May 26): Students in Manufacturing, Apprenticeship, Technology, and Transportation classes returned to campus to complete hands-on labs/classes and simulation activities. Advanced safety protocols and screening continued. Some services resumed operations by appointment only; including Testing Services and Registration and Records. College remains closed to the public; most employees continue to work remotely.
- Stage 4 (June 8): Face-to-face/hands-on classes resume using physical distancing in all meeting areas. Advanced safety protocols and screening will continue. Limited Student Support Services and IT Helpdesk will be available in-person. Additional services to resume in a limited capacity include vending machines, Starbucks, Bookstore, and BTC Shuttle. Outdoor parking lots and land are available for use by outside groups following established college policy. The college remains closed to the public; most employees continue to work remotely.
- Stage 5 (TBD): Advanced cleaning and sanitization protocols will continue but visitors to campus will not be required to be screened for entrance. Protective eyewear and facemasks continue to be required at all BTC locations. Campus gathering places will reopen; including the Student Success Center, Fitness Center, Student Union, and Commons. Events and activities with up to 25 can meet in-person in a space that allows for physical distancing. College open to students and employees.
- Stage 6 (TBD): College open to the public, students, and employees. No active screening protocols will be used for entrance to college buildings. Protective eyewear and facemasks continue to be required at all BTC locations. Classes continue to follow physical distancing and advanced sanitization protocols. College services will continue to be available online, but all services will be available on campus. Events and activities with up to 50 can meet in-person in a space that allows for physical distancing.
- Stage 7 (TBD): Campuses open to the public. Shuttle services resume normal operations. No active screening protocols will be required for entrance and protective eyewear and facemasks are recommended, not required. Indoor facilities are available for use by outside groups.
The news release states: "The safety and well-being of students and employees remain a top priority for Blackhawk leadership. The reopening plan allows the college to slowly and safely resume operations."
For more information on the college’s response to COVID-19 visit www.Blackhawk.edu/coronavirus.