The Paris Junior College Board of Regents approved an extension of the spring semester to May 14, 2020, due to the COVID-19 pandemic at a special meeting held Thursday, March 26.
We are having to do that because we extended Spring Break for our students one week, said PJC President Dr. Pam Anglin.
The regents met a week earlier than planned in order to approve a resolution delegating authority to the PJC President to operate the college during alternate operations due to COVID-19.
As part of her report to the Regents, Dr. Anglin explained that employees came in during the Spring Break extension to shift to working remotely and putting everything online so classes could continue on Monday, March 23.
We have a lot our workforce classes can do, lecture-wise, said Dr. Anglin, explaining that for those classes with hands-on labs such as welding, mechatronics, electrician, etc., that the students would be brought back when it’s safe for them to finish their labs.
PJC has also added wifi hot spots in Paris, Greenville, and Sulphur Springs. Students have been notified of the specific locations and provided passwords. They can drive up and do work online from their vehicle.
A skeleton crew is manning all the locations to keep things up and running, especially information technology. Campus police are working their regular shifts and student services are available to students by phone and email.
The college has purchased Zoom licenses, said Dr. Anglin. Faculty may have a presence during their office hours and students can see and talk to their instructor and get help from faculty who are tutoring that way. Were all remaining flexible as we work with our students.
In other business, the Regents:
* Received the financial report from Controller Keitha Carlton, showing that revenues continue to be higher than expenses. The College will not achieve its tuition revenue projection this year.
The Legislature has asked us to look at where we’ll be at the end of the year, said Dr. Anglin. We’ve also been asked to track any expenditures we would not normally have because of closures due to the coronavirus.
* Authorized continuation of local charitable giving through the United Way by opting out of the State Employee Charitable Contribution Campaign. This ensures that local donations are spent locally.
* Approved the 403(b) Plan Document Amendment and Restatement resolution.
* Approved a 3.5 percent increase in the annual Aramark contract for meal prices for the 2020-2021 academic year.
* Approved room and board rates for the academic year 2020-2021 for fall and spring of $2,540 in Hatcher and Thompson Residence Halls and $2,740 in the South Campus Residence Hall. Summer residence hall rates remain unchanged.
* Approved the extension of faculty contracts for the 2020-2021 academic year; the employment of Systems and Database Administrator Tyler Alcox, effective March 16; and the resignations of Talent Search Advisor Tiffany Spangler effective March 27, and Computer Information Instructor Larry Lambert, Economics Instructor Mike McCoy, and Director of Nursing Stephanie Parker, all effective Aug. 31.
* Accepted the high bid in the sale of the PJC Recreation Center; contracts will now be prepared to complete the sale.