This message is sent on behalf of President Maureen Adamson
Peterborough ON – (March 27, 2020) – Just days ago, I wrote to you as we were faced with an entirely new reality presented by COVID-19, one that would challenge us in many ways. Now, as we have progressed through the first week of teaching and learning within our new framework, I am immensely impressed by the resilience of our students and the collaborative and creative work of our faculty and staff. We are all doing everything we can to successfully complete the semester for as many students as possible and support each other along the way.
To further protect the health and safety of the Fleming community and provide as much support and relief as possible, we are making the following adjustments:
- All campus buildings are now closed to both students and employees until further notice. This action aligns with the Provincial Emergency Declaration and supports ongoing physical distancing within our communities. Access will only be granted to those essential to maintaining critical operations infrastructure.
- Some programs will not be offered for the Spring semester. Our academic team is currently exploring every option and finalizing the list of available programs and will share it very soon.
- For programs that will be offered, the Spring semester will now start on May 19 in an online or alternate delivery format only. No face-to-face classes will run during the Spring semester. The semester will be 14 continuous weeks in duration, ending on August 21. Students who wish to defer to the Fall semester may do so through the Admissions office. Please note that deferral to the Fall semester may not be possible for all programs.
- There will be no Spring intake of international students from out-of-country. Students who had received offers and paid tuition will be offered deferrals for future intakes once conditions for travel have improved. Returning students currently in Canada can continue their programs online.
- A revised list of due dates and schedules for grades, fees and other items will be shared early next week.
- We understand that questions have been raised regarding refunds for courses and services. At this time, we will not be issuing refunds for continuing programs. We are working with the Ministry of Colleges and Universities for further guidance through this unprecedented situation.
- Students will be eligible for refunds for parking, residence and locker charges prorated as of March 16. A credit will be issued to student accounts. More details on the implementation will follow shortly.
- Once we are back on campus, employees paying for parking will be granted a fee “holiday” via payroll or a discount on their next parking permit for a period of time equivalent to that between March 16 and the re-opening of our campuses. Those employees on term contracts who will not be returning to work can apply for a refund. More details will follow.
Please know that we are doing all we can to provide support to students and employees. Virtual support services are running. Counselling, tutoring, peer mentoring, library support and other services are available by phone, video chat or email. International Student Services is running live chat and virtual support rooms via Webex. Our Learning Design and Support team has several tools to help faculty move to online and alternate delivery.
For all employees, our Employee and Family Assistance program is available to assist you with a wide range of challenges.
I’m also proud of the support that we are providing to our communities. The Peterborough Sport and Wellness Centre is being set up as an emergency homeless shelter to alleviate stress on the current shelters and allow for appropriate physical distancing. We will be making residence space available to the Peterborough Regional Health Centre to potentially house some of their employees if it is needed. Where possible, we will be offering supplies to our healthcare partners and we have made donations of food to local support groups.
In the coming days, we will be making more decisions and making further adjustments as we evaluate information gathered from our public health units and other government authorities.
This time is unlike any other we have experienced at Fleming. There are challenges and there are frustrations. But, the wonderful part is the sense that our college and our community is coming together to stop the spread of this pandemic. The cancellations, shut-downs, physical distancing and other disruptive changes, will work. It will take time, but we as a college and a community will come through this stronger than ever.
President, Fleming College