Planning for Spring 2021

Thursday, Oct. 29, 2020

Two months ago, we welcomed a record number of HBU students for the Fall 2020 semester! We are grateful for your part in a successful return to campus. The health of our learning community is a testament to the work that went into preparing to reopen safely, and the willingness of faculty, staff and students to comply with these efforts.

Hybrid Academic Delivery

As much as we all wish we could return to traditional instructional models, the fact is that we must continue to socially distance, wear masks, and use a hybrid delivery model to ensure the safety of our campus community.

To provide safe distancing, and follow general health guidelines, HBU will continue to employ a remote hybrid delivery mechanism in Spring 2021 that reduces occupancy in classrooms and labs to no more than 50%. Wearing face masks consistently also reduces the risk of transmission of COVID-19 and other viruses. Continuous Infectious Microbial Reduction (CIMR) systems are now used widely in classrooms and public spaces throughout the campus. These safety and health measures have supported a minimal rate of COVID infections on campus this fall, and therefore will be maintained throughout Spring 2021.

Requirement to Attend Residential Classes In Person

For MW or MWF classes, students should attend class on campus either Monday or Wednesday only (Friday sessions are conducted remotely). For TR classes, students should attend class on campus either Tuesday or Thursday only. Class rosters for the spring will be divided alphabetically.

Attendance will be taken each week during the in-person classroom sessions. Students must attend one in-person session each week, and submit all required course requirements as assigned (e.g. essay, homework, report, discussion board).

All residential students will be required to attend classes during the spring on campus, following our proven safety practices, unless approved through the process detailed below.

Learn From Home (100% Remote Access)

Students with conditions or situations that result in greater risk may consider these remote access options for HBU courses.

Approval Required for 100% Remote Access to Residential Courses

To request approval to take residential courses by 100% remote access during Spring 2021, a student must certify that (s)he has one of the following three conditions:

    1. I have a health concern that increases my risk of infection (examples include respiratory or immune-suppression conditions)
    2. I live in a residence that includes occupants with health concerns (examples include infants, individuals over 65, individuals with respiratory or immune-suppression conditions)
    3. I require academic accommodations that prevent in-person on-campus attendance (Section 504, approved with Testing and Disability Center and documentation required)

Students wishing to request approval for remote access must complete an online form that is currently being developed. The link will be posted on the Options for Fully Remote Access page when it is available.

Spring Academic Calendar

No changes to the Spring 2021 Academic Calendar are projected at this point; however, circumstances could change, requiring a change in start date, finish date, or spring break dates.

In Closing

Fall 2020 has been a success as the entire HBU community has adapted to a hybrid instructional delivery model. We all must stay vigilant through the spring, continuing the safety measures that reduce the risks to our fellow Huskies. In the Bible, we find a few words about perseverance we find particularly fitting for this season:

“Consider it pure joy, my brothers and sisters, whenever you face trials of many kinds, because you know that the testing of your faith produces perseverance. Let perseverance finish its work so that you may be mature and complete, not lacking anything.”

– James 1:2-4 (NIV)

We appreciate the perseverance, commitment and flexibility that each of you has shown so far. The Husky Strong Task Force will continue to communicate University updates as the spring approaches. Please continue to visit  HBU.edu/HuskyStrong for the latest information about Spring 2021.

© 2020 Houston Baptist University