This message was sent via e-mail to all faculty on the UW Tacoma campus. Similar messages were sent to students and staff.
Although you may already have heard about UW’s plans to return to largely in-person classes on Jan. 31, we want to assure you that we on the Tacoma campus are aware that conditions in Pierce County are different than in the counties of our sister campuses, and this message describes how we will be approaching the remainder of winter quarter.
Based on improvements in case counts in the wider region (Pierce County is at most a few days or a week behind King County), we are now ready to welcome students back to largely in-person classes and experiences on Monday, Jan. 31.
Instructors are expected to return classes to the mode of instruction listed in the time schedule. However, in consultation with your dean, chair or director, you may alter a course’s instructional modality, including a temporary change to remote instruction. We ask our deans to exercise their own judgement and flexibility in accommodating the needs of our faculty and academic staff. If COVID-related factors impact your ability to remain in person later in the quarter, please interact with your dean and seek accommodations for limited time periods. Regardless of your teaching mode, we thank you in advance for giving students as much advance notice as possible of any such change.
We ask that you be flexible with those students who need to miss class due to illness, the need to quarantine, or other coronavirus-related disruption, and provide them with options for continuing their learning and making up missed work. However, you are not expected to provide in-person and remote instruction simultaneously. Additional information for instructors is available.
Winter quarter 2022 has been designated an “extraordinary circumstances” quarter, and students may request to change their course grades between numeric grades and Satisfactory/Non-Satisfactory (S/NS) until their degree is posted.
Autumn quarter worked because of your efforts! We ask you to continue the same diligent care: stay home when sick, get a booster shot, avoid unmasked gatherings, wear a well-fitting, high-quality mask. Testing options in our region continue to expand and now include rapid tests that are mailed to you. Faculty and staff can request accommodations due to health conditions or other extenuating circumstances.
Tomorrow, Tuesday, Jan. 25, from 10-11 a.m., we will be hosting a Community Conversation where you can learn more about how the remainder of winter quarter will work, and you can ask questions you may have about our plans. It will also be an opportunity to hear your suggestions for how best we work together to uphold our values of access, equity, excellence and belonging as we successfully transition back to a largely in-person environment. You can submit your questions in advance or during the event to email@example.com.
We want you to know how much we appreciate the grace you have shown throughout these last two years. Our core values include providing, safely, an excellent in-person educational experience for our students. The emergence of Omicron has been stressful and for many traumatic, but case counts in some parts of our region are already declining, and are predicted to begin declining in Pierce County within the next week.
With your continued dedication and patience on- and off-campus, we will get through this! Thank you. You make us proud to be Huskies!
Sheila Edwards Lange, Chancellor
Ali Modarres, Executive Vice Chancellor for Academic Affairs
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