President Stern announces six-month COVID-19 update

Textbooks for student needs and masks. Cameron Osburn/Lariat

Exactly six months ago from Sept. 11, the World Health Organization declared the coronavirus a pandemic. President Elliot Stern released a six-month COVID-19 update to inform students and faculty about the changes of Saddleback College reopening.

As Orange County continues to reopen businesses, COVID-19 cases are on a decline. 

Stern sent an email to students and faculty to discuss the possibility of in-person classes coming back. With a couple of classes on campus needing to be in person, social distancing has been maintained as well as mask wearing. These classes  are going to be “guinea pigs” to see how successful they will be.

Saddleback College continues to be well-cleaned and maintained as extra safety techniques are being added to campus.

“We have upped the cleaning level of our on-campus labs and are supplying hand sanitizer for every learning space in use; but this is another example of providing an extra layer of protection, which, it turns out, is not nearly as important as face masks and social distancing,” Stern said in an email to the campus.

It is suggested that people wear a mask while going out. COVID-19 is transmitted through breathing in droplets or aerosols from an infected human.  

Since June and July, cases have dropped marginally. The new case rate has dropped over 80% in the past couple months.

“By studying where people got Covid and which government responses were most effective at lowering new case rates, we can cull patterns and be more surgical in our societal responses,” Stern said.

The blueprint to continuing class in-person is still being figured out. Day by day, Saddleback looks to slowly reopen soon.

Stern is expected to update the campus once he receives the new State information for reopening schools.