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COVID-19 Alert

Highland Community College is closely monitoring the COVID-19 (2019 Novel Coronavirus) illness in our district and state. The Highland emergency management team has established a COVID-19 Task Force... continue reading

COVID-19 Metrics

COVID-19 Metrics Used in Campus-Wide Analysis

Since March 2020, Highland Community College recognizes our role in slowing the spread of COVID-19. To help ensure a safe and healthy learning and working environment, the College continues to review and update guidelines following updates from:

  • Illinois Governor’s Office Executive Orders,
  • CDC guidelines and recommendations,
  • Illinois Department of Public Health (IDPH) guidelines and recommendation, and
  • County health guidelines and recommendations.

All decisions about implementing strategies such as campus moving to remote learning and/or work, closing campus, and/or other health and safety measures are made by the College Emergency Management Team’s COVID-19 Task Force or Task Force designee in collaboration with the Stephenson County Health Department (SCHD) and State orders.

About the Metrics

This document outlines metrics related to decisions about campus-wide operations. This document is reviewed and modified as the pandemic continues to change throughout the district. This document exists with the COVID-19 Dashboard, Campus Safety Guidelines, Student Resources, and employee communications available at highland.edu/hcc-advisory and the Staff Portal at highland.edu.

For decisions related to transitioning campus to remote learning/work and/or closing the campus, the College, in conjunction with SCHD, monitors, the following data to assess the conditions in our region, county and at the College:

The following chart includes measurements, responses and mitigations that may be taken (please note, these are not listed in a particular order and these metrics are considered in conjunction with one another). The College will not take a more lenient stance than recommended by the SCHD, Governor’s Executive Order, and/or other relevant agencies. In the unusual situation when the SCHD cannot be reached immediately, the College will take preventative action until such time we can receive direction from the SCHD:

MEASURE:RESPONSE:MITIGATION (including but not limited to):
Governor’s Executive Order· Review orders.
· Update campus guidelines.
· Implement mitigations.
· Follow state guidelines.
Regional positivity rate > 8%  · Review needed adjustments to operations with the SCHD.
· Implement mitigations.
· Reduce size of gatherings.
· Further limit travel.
· Transition to increased remote learning/work.
County positivity rate > 8%  · Review needed adjustments to operations with the SCHD.
· Update campus guidelines per any new state restrictions.
· Implement mitigations
· Consult with the SCHD about when to transition back to in-person learning/work.
· Reduce size of gatherings.
· Limit access to campus by outside groups.
· Further limit travel.
· Transition to increased remote learning/work.
On HCC campus, two or more positive cases in a classroom, lab, or work space· Review needed adjustments to operations with the SCHD.
· Implement mitigations.
· Communicate with those impacted as determined by the SCHD.  
· Transition specific areas to remote learning/work.
· Pause campus work/learning in specific areas temporarily.
· Quarantine as directed by SCHD.
· Temporarily close a classroom, work area, or building.
· Additional cleaning if needed.
On HCC campus, two or more positive cases in classes or work spaces in the same building with an outbreak determined by SCHD· Review needed adjustments to operations with the SCHD.
· Implement mitigations.
· Communicate with those impacted as determined by the SCHD.
· Transition specific areas to remote learning/work.
· Pause work/learning in specific areas temporarily.
· Quarantine as directed by SCHD.
· Temporarily close a classroom, work area, or building as directed by SCHD.
· Additional cleaning if needed.
On HCC campus, campus-wide outbreak as determined by SCHD· Review needed adjustments to operations with the SCHD.
· Implement mitigations.
· Communicate with those impacted as determined by the SCHD.
· Transition campus to remote learning/work.
· Pause work/learning temporarily.
· Quarantine as directed by SCHD.
· Temporarily close campus as directed by SCHD.
· Additional cleaning if needed.
On HCC campus, a week to week spike in positive cases of > 100% (2x the prior week)· Review needed adjustments to operations with the SCHD.
· Analyze in relation to HCC’s trend in the number of new on campus cases.
· Implement mitigations.
· Communicate with those impacted as determined by the SCHD.
·Transition specific areas to remote learning/work.
· Pause work/learning in specific areas temporarily.
· Quarantine as directed by SCHD.
· Temporarily close a classroom, work area, or building as directed by SCHD.
· Additional cleaning if needed.

Communication on Guidance Changes

COVID-19 confirmed campus cases are displayed at highland.edu/covid19dashboard. Students and employees are notified of official guidance and the above metrics by Highland email, student/staff web portal, text messaging, and/or Campus Connections bi-weekly Zoom meetings.  In compliance with HIPAA and FERPA, private communication with departments and individuals directly impacted with a case are completed on a case by case basis by Human Resources or the Vice President of Student Services and Development.

For additional guidance and communications, see Phase 3 and Phase 4 Campus Safety Precautions .

Highland Campus

2998 W. Pearl City Rd. Freeport, IL 61032

815.235.6121

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