RECAST | Follow-up to faculty regarding altered operations and remote teaching

Dear Colleagues:

As was just shared in a campus-wide e-mail, Evergreen learned today that Governor Inslee has halted in-person instruction at colleges across the state starting March 17.  Accordingly, the college is entering a period of altered operations through April 24 during which limited virtual services will be provided to students and employees. Over the next two weeks, cross-divisional groups are working through the many other details that this change requires to be able to support spring teaching and learning. Staff supervisors will be determining who is working on campus, who is working remotely and who will be assigned to paid administrative leave during some or all of this time.

Here is information particularly relevant for faculty:

  • Winter 2019 evaluations are likely forefront on your mind.  As previously indicated, they should be completed remotely rather than in person.  Students and their faculty will work together to determine how they will be conducting their conference.  You can still access your office if needed.
  • Spring quarter 2020 instruction will now begin on Thursday, April 2, 2020 and all classes will be held remotely at least through the first four weeks of the quarter (through April 24).
  • We will not approve any fieldtrips or professional travel that would take place before April 24.

These are extraordinary times. It’s our responsibility to ensure a high-quality academic experience for all students no matter the mode of instruction, and for many of us that will mean developing or enhancing our remote teaching skills. I know that you will do all that you can to be ready to support student learning as we launch spring quarter. Likewise, we are preparing to support you on this learning journey, and will provide additional structures to do so—more details to come.

As a start, the Academic Deans, Learning and Teaching Commons, Academic Technologies, and Library and Media Services are collaborating to develop “Keep Teaching” Institutes that will guide you through developing your Canvas course and teaching with Zoom. The “Keep Teaching” Coordinating Team will also provide tutorials for Slack instant messaging, which is the tool we will use to answer your questions about remote teaching. The Institutes will be offered in person on Wednesday 3/18, Thursday 3/19, and Tuesday 3/24. All sessions will be held from 9-4, with a break for lunch from 12-1, and the Tuesday, 3/24 session is being specifically designed for lab and studio teaching.  Look for an e-mail from the Learning and Teaching Commons with further details and a sign-up link. The College is working closely with the UFE on this work.

You may have concerns about joining a face-to-face training at this moment, but an immersive learning experience alongside your colleagues will prepare you most quickly for the work ahead. To protect your health and the health of our community, we will ensure that the surfaces and equipment will be disinfected, hand-sanitizer will be available, and appropriate social distancing practices are employed. If you are sick or a member of a group with a higher risk of infection, a remote session will be offered on Friday 3/20 from 1-4.

E-mails being sent to staff and students as well as other updates will be posted to the webIf you have further questions, please email info@evergreen.edu.

I remain grateful for your flexibility and creativity. Thank you.

Best,
Jen

Jennifer Drake, PhD | Provost and Vice President for Student & Academic Life
she/her pronouns
3805 Library, The Evergreen State College
2700 Evergreen Pkwy NW, Olympia, Washington 98505
(360) 867-6400  I  drakej@evergreen.edu

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