College officials prepare for coronavirus


By Lauren Ebben, Editor-in-Chief

In a mass email, college officials informed students about the future of AC classes amid college and university delays and shutdowns across the nation.

Russell Lowery-Hart, AC president, identified a three phase action plan the college has developed in response to COVID-19.

  • Phase One: Preparing and preventing the coronavirus
  • Phase Two: Reacting when the virus is officially diagnosed in the Amarillo community
  • Phase Three: Reacting if an AC student, faculty or staff member is diagnosed

The college is in phase one, according to Lowery-Hart.

“We will continue our emphasis on personal hygiene, continuous communication related to both academics and coronavirus preparedness, and increased institution-wide disinfecting of communal areas,” he said.

In the event of a coronavirus diagnosis in the community or at AC, the college will shift to remote teaching and learning, he said.

“We are preparing for the eventuality that tech-supported learning will become necessary, which could entail a wide range of online and network technologies, depending on the classes you are in,” he said.

While AC remains open for the time being, hundreds of colleges and universities across the nation are taking precautions to prevent the coronavirus from spreading, including those closer to Amarillo.

We will continue our emphasis on personal hygiene, continuous communication related to both academics and coronavirus preparedness, and increased institution-wide disinfecting of communal areas,”

Russell Lowery-Hart, AC president

West Texas A&M University recently announced to its students a spring break extension, with classes starting back up March 25, according to a statement released by the university. Sixty-five percent of those classes will be online, the statement said.

Texas Tech University also announced classes will be canceled after spring break. Classes will resume March 30 and all classes will be online.

AC “will continue to be informed by local governmental and public health authorities, including the Centers for Disease Control,” according to Lowery-Hart.

For more updates and information regarding this issue at AC, visit https://www.actx.edu/covid19

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, by March 12, more than 1,200 cases of the coronavirus have been reported in the United States. The coronavirus is a disease caused by a virus called 2019-nCoV. Health officials believe the virus is spread through person-to-person contact. 

The best way to prevent illness is to wash hands with soap and water for at least 20 seconds and avoid contact with infected people, according to the CDC.

For more information about the virus and how to prevent it, please visit https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/index.html

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  1. College extends spring break to prepare for remote learning, other updates – The Ranger

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