Update: Plans in development for Fall 2020 course programming
Throughout the COVID-19 pandemic, the Saskatchewan post-secondary sector has worked together to safeguard our students and staff and has established principles and protocols which have guided our incremental approach to fall programming.
At this time, Briercrest is preparing for either a robust offering of online courses only, or if the conditions permit, a blended model of small classes, in a socially distanced return to campus, adhering to the public health guidelines as delivered by the Government of Saskatchewan’s Chief Medical Officer. We will be awaiting the instructions of our Saskatchewan Health Authority to consider if re-opening our campus is a safe and responsible option for our rural context.
“With a hybrid model of delivery, Briercrest hopes to bring students onto campus, placed in smaller classes, socially distanced, and in a well-structured environment,” explained Briercrest Provost Don Taylor.
“If the conditions surrounding COVID-19 do not permit students to return to campus, Briercrest will be well-poised for online delivery. In this model, courses will be delivered in a blend of live and independent online formats. The Briercrest College and Seminary faculty have been learning how to improve the experience and effectiveness of online courses to ensure that the academic quality will be just as valuable as in-person courses.”
President Michael Pawelke commented, “Briercrest responded to the COVID-19 pandemic swiftly and conscientiously with the safety and well-being of our students, staff, and faculty as our top concern. While we have maintained our commitment to safety, we have adjusted our strategies, plans, and procedures in order to continue delivering the same quality educational experience that Briercrest is known for.”
Led by President Pawelke, Briercrest College and Seminary’s executive leadership team has been engaging in regular planning meetings dedicated to helping Briercrest’s high school, college, and seminary students succeed in the fall in any class format. “Various strategies including increased online dialogue, cohort interaction, accountability, and support will be employed to enhance the experience of students,” he said.
Going forward, Taylor said that “a plan is also being made for a thoughtful and safe re-start on campus. This plan must be approved by Saskatchewan Health Authority as they monitor the conditions of the pandemic and its potential impact on the Briercrest campus.
“At Briercrest we have the facilities and expertise to navigate a safe and warm community life while maintaining the wise protocols of our provincial health authorities. Our plan is under development to re-open in a structured and thoughtful manner that makes the most of our spacious campus and smaller student body. In this season of innovation, we are discovering new and creative ways of training young people and establishing a healthy community.”
"We have developed a plan for face to face instruction and we hope to have a response from health officials regarding our plan in the next couple weeks (we can put a date, June 15th). Nonetheless, we are preparing for a robust online experience for students should the circumstances of the pandemic require it. Thank you for your patience." Briercrest Provost Don Taylor.