Saddleback College President says campus ‘will remain open’ for now amid lack of community spread in OC

Saddleback College President Elliot Stern sent an email to student, staff and faculty that the campus will not immediately be moving in person classes to online platform.

Out of the five confirmed cases in the OC, all have been from travel spread not community spread, so we are still at low risk according to Stern’s email. As the number of cases increase the probability of having a community spread case goes up, so Saddleback will be monitoring the situation.

“Our decision-making in response to Covid-19 will continue to be based on science, data and expert opinion, not fear,” said President Stern in his release.

Recently, University of California Irvine announced they will be moving a majority of their on campus classes online after a student was tested for the virus, although he tested negative. On the other hand, California State University Fullerton made the decision to keep in person instruction active. The decision prompted backlash from some of the student body criticizing the lack of response to the virus.

Soka University, the other college closest to Saddleback, have decided to halted study abroad programs in China and canceled all individual and group tours until further notice. The Soka International Festival happening on May 2nd has additionally been cancelled.

President Stern ended his email reassuring the campus is prepared to move classes online to Canvas as 40% of classes offered are already online and nearly 50 credentials are completely online. The school has also cancelled some authorized travel trips and stocked up on hygiene and cleaning supplies to keep the campus clean.