Fall semester plans announced for higher education

Posted at 10:59 AM, Jun 02, 2020
and last updated 2020-06-02 12:59:50-04

BOISE, Idaho — Higher education institutions in Idaho have announced plans for what instruction will look like in the fall. In late May, the colleges and universities presented plans to high school counselors and advisors via a Zoom meeting. Governor Little also made an appearance at the conference.

Whether you are a higher education institution or a local school district, you have to be prepared for contingencies,” the Governor said.

The fall semester contingencies will include lessons learned from the spring semester.

“We’ll have face-to-face, remote and hybrid courses, and our goals are simple,” said Boise State University President Dr. Marlene Tromp. “We want to keep people safe and on track to reach their goals, and we want to get people connected with each other, which is part of the university experience.”

All eight of Idaho’s colleges and universities are planning to start the fall semester on August 24. To keep students safe and ensure social distancing, large in-person classes will be held in ballrooms, medium-sized courses will be held in larger rooms like lecture halls and small classes will be held in medium classrooms.

“One of the lessons we learned during the spring was that while we can deliver distance-based instruction, what we demonstrated was the real value of face-to-face education,” Idaho State University President Kevin Satterlee said. “The interaction between a student and their faculty, the connections that are made, the interplay, the back and forth that learning can be, and how we can continue that.”

The Zoom presentations are posted on the State Board’s Next Steps Idaho website. The Governor’s message and all eight public institution presentations are available for you to watch. According to a press release from the State Board, time and effort have gone into making these plans, and Idaho’s high education institutions are prepared and ready to safely welcome students back to campus in the fall.

This is about living a vibrant, virus-ready reality because that is our reality and it is going to be this way for a while, not just a matter of days or weeks but months and possibly years,” Lewis-Clark State College President Dr. Cynthia Pemberton said.