Spring Schedule and Vaccination Update

Community College of Philadelphia will be operating remotely through February 14 with a limited number of classes meeting in person. Due to City of Philadelphia mandates, all students, faculty and staff must be fully vaccinated. To register for in-person or hybrid spring 2022 classes, students need to be fully vaccinated or have an approved exemption. Students who are not vaccinated or do not have an approved exemption are able to register for fully online courses. Please see our College COVID-19 Updates for more information and visit our Virtual Student Resource Center for support.

Spring 2022 Protect the Pride Plan

Updated December 14, 2021

This plan is based on what is currently known about the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) and is subject to change as circumstances and recommendations change. This plan is to be utilized as a guideline and is not meant to supersede any current city, state or federal recommendations or orders.

Executive Summary

As the COVID-19 pandemic, caused by the SARS-CoV-2 virus, evolves, the safety and wellbeing of the College’s students, faculty and staff are our main priority. As such, and per City, State and Federal guidelines, the College has prepared this COVID-19 Protect the Pride plan to ensure the campus remains a safe teaching and learning space. This document is meant to provide a framework for responding to this pandemic as it relates to Community College of Philadelphia operations and facilities management. 

I. Introduction

This Spring 2022 COVID-19 Protect the Pride Plan is intended to help Community College of Philadelphia (CCP) faculty, staff, and students to continue to safely navigate the COVID-19 pandemic. The full implementation of the vaccine mandate at the College makes it possible for the College to return to normal occupancy levels and remove social distancing restrictions for Spring 2022. The Spring 2022 Protect the Pride Plan (hereinafter “the Plan”) provides guidance for the College community to continue to move forward together in our “new normal” by practicing recommended practices and daily habits to reduce transmission of COVID-19.

The Plan relies on recommended city, state and federal public health strategies, including requiring practicing good hygiene, vaccination, isolating individuals who have contracted or been exposed to COVID-19, and keeping track of how someone infected might have infected other people via contact tracing. CCP is following the City of Philadelphia's and Pennsylvania’s Department of Health guidelines. Additionally, CCP will work with local public health officials from the City of Philadelphia on local recommendations and health monitoring.

II. Return to Normal Occupancy Levels and Pre-pandemic Schedules

Effective January 4, 2022, the College will return to normal occupancy levels while also continuing some of the prior safety measures. Classrooms, offices, meeting spaces and other areas on campus will return to normal occupancy levels, and social distancing will not be required. This means that classes will return to the normal number of students per class, and employees will be expected to return to work according to their pre-pandemic schedule. Full-time faculty will need to teach at least one class on campus and conduct office hours on campus. 

Remote work will generally not be available in Spring 2022. Limited requests for remote work due to COVID exposure or illness, or for other medical reasons may be considered by each Division Vice President in consultation with Human Resources. To the extent possible, employees quarantining due to COVID exposure may be required to work remotely. Note that a return to normal occupancy means that COVID-related accommodation requests will end, and will not be considered for Spring 2022.  Disability-related accommodation requests will continue to be considered pursuant to the College’s normal disability accommodations process.

III. Infection Prevention Strategies

Although the College will remove crowd and occupancy restrictions beginning January 4, 2022, the College community will still need to follow certain infection prevention strategies to mitigate COVID-19 transmission on campus. These strategies are set forth below.

a. General Guidance to Help Prevent Exposure to COVID-19

The general guidance below applies to all CCP faculty, staff, and students:

  • Get fully vaccinated.
  • Frequently wash your hands with soap and water for at least 20 seconds. When soap and running water are unavailable, use an alcohol-based hand rub with at least 60% alcohol. Always wash hands that are visibly soiled.
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose or mouth with unwashed hands.
  • Practice good respiratory etiquette, including covering coughs and sneezes with your inner elbow.
  • Avoid close contact with people who are sick.
  • Stay home if sick.

b. Getting Vaccinated

In accordance with the City of Philadelphia’s Emergency Regulation Mandating Vaccines in Higher Education, effective November 15, 2021, all faculty, staff, students, volunteers and contractors coming to campus must be fully vaccinated against COVID-19, unless they have a valid medical or religious exemption. Those with a valid exemption will be required to submit to twice-weekly COVID-19 testing in accordance with the City of Philadelphia’s mandate and the College’s mandatory COVID-19 vaccination and testing policy, which is available on the College’s website.  Faculty, staff and students may submit their vaccination cards and vaccine information via the MyCCP portal

In addition, in accordance with current recommendations of the Philadelphia Department of Public Health (PDPH) and the CDC, the College encourages all faculty, staff, students, volunteers and contractors to get a booster shot whenever they are eligible. 

CCP will continue to provide vaccination resources to the College community, including holding vaccination and/or booster clinics both off-site and onsite at CCP. Visit www.vaccines.gov to find a vaccination sight near you.

c. COVID-19 Testing

Faculty, staff or students who have obtained an exemption from the vaccination requirement will be required to undergo routine COVID-19 testing (twice weekly antigen testing, once weekly PCR testing, or as otherwise required by any applicable law, rule or regulation from the PDPH) in order to access campus buildings in accordance with the City of Philadelphia’s vaccination mandate and the College’s vaccination and testing policy.

Additionally, testing will continue to be available for employees or students that have been in close contact with someone with COVID-19 or who are experiencing COVID-19 symptoms.

d. Masks

All individuals on campus (students, instructors, staff, teaching assistants, vendors, visitors) must continue to wear masks indoors except only:

  • When you are alone in your office or workspace.
  • As necessary to eat or drink during break times in designated break or eating areas. (Note: Eating or drinking is not permitted in the classroom. Designated eating areas throughout the College will be clearly identified and labeled as such).

If you do not have a mask, please visit Public Safety in MG-12 or at building entrances where you will be provided with one. Masks must comply with CDC mask guidelines. Keep enough around that you always have one handy. If using a cloth mask, wash your mask in the regular laundry or hand wash with soap and water each day that you use it.

e. Hand Sanitizer Stations

Alcohol-based hand sanitizer (containing at least 60% alcohol) is helpful in protecting against the spread of germs and viruses. However, handwashing with soap and water is still best. Hand sanitizer is effective when soap and water are not readily available. Carrying a travel size bottle of hand sanitizer makes it easy to disinfect your hands in these situations. Additionally, hand sanitizer dispensers will be mounted in various hallways and campus common areas.

f. Hand Washing Facilities

Handwashing is a significant mitigation strategy to protect yourself and minimize community spread of COVID-19. It is common sense, and it works. However, it must be done properly and with soap and water. CCP will ensure bathroom facilities are opened, operating and properly stocked with supplies. Bathroom exhaust vents will run 24/7 to allow for continuous air flow in the bathrooms. ‘No touch’ fixtures have been installed in many bathrooms. Signs reinforcing handwashing with soap and water (or hand sanitizer with at least 60% alcohol) for 20 seconds will be posted. Paper towels or hand dryers should be used to adequately dry hands after washing.

g. HVAC Operations

The American Society of Heating, Refrigerating and Air-Conditioning Engineers (ASHRAE) has developed proactive guidance to help address COVID-19 concerns with respect to the operation and maintenance of heating, ventilating, and air-conditioning (HVAC) systems.

CCP will continue to follow the recommendations outlined in the ASHRAE “Core Recommendations for Reducing Airborne Infectious Aerosol Exposure” dated January 6, 2021 and “ASHRAE Position Document on Infectious Aerosols” dated April 14, 2020 to the extent applicable. For most campus buildings and areas, the HVAC system will operate under normal conditions. Where possible, additional ventilation and outdoor air has been increased. Filtration media has been increased to be a minimum of MERV-13 rating where possible. Additional ventilation may be considered for certain higher risk areas if identified. Temperature and humidity control will be maintained as normal.

Additionally, per City of Philadelphia recommendations, CCP will:

  • Have each HVAC system checked to assure that it is working properly. If it can be adjusted, the system will be set to provide at least 6 air exchanges per hour or the highest rate possible.
  • Maximize the amount of outside air circulated by the system as allowable with weather conditions and the existing systems.
  • Install filters with minimum efficiency reporting values (MERV) of 13, or the highest compatible with the filter rack. While it is not necessary to use ultraviolet light irradiation systems, CCP will evaluate the potential use of these systems across campus.
  • Ensure that the external air inlet duct is not blocked and that it is at least 15 feet from persons.

h. Barriers

Physical barriers have been installed in campus offices, dining halls or other common spaces as necessary.

i. Reduction of Touch Points

CCP will continue to reduce ‘touch points’ throughout our buildings as much as possible. Interior classroom and office doors will be kept open as much as possible. No-touch trash cans are available.  The College will continue to make efforts to reduce the number of flyers, brochures, magazines, pens and other common materials by encouraging faculty and others to use electronic materials to the greatest extent practical. CCP staff will continuously review our building operations to determine how touch points can be reduced.

j. Meetings

Although there will be no limit on in-person work meetings, College employees should still consider virtual meeting options for circumstances in which employees are unable to report to work when, for example, they are required to quarantine due to COVID exposure.

k. Visitor Protocol 

Visitors to campus will not be restricted. Visitors will be required to provide proof of vaccination or a negative COVID test that is no more than three days old in order to access campus.

l. Special or Social Events  

All special or social events taking place at the College (including indoor or outdoor events) must be coordinated with Erica Harrison, the College’s Director for Special Events & Community Relations (eharrison@ccp.edu) prior to the event to ensure appropriate applicable safety measures. Requests for special or social events will continue to be evaluated on a case-by-case basis. Although occupancy limits and social distancing restrictions will be lifted, individuals planning special events at the College should use good judgment in determining the number of occupants to invite, and will need to provide attendee contact information to the Special Events Office. All requests for food service at events must be submitted at least five days in advance, and must include covered, served food or pre-packaged options (self-serve options will not be permitted). Attendees at College events, whether on or off campus, will need to show proof of vaccination or a negative COVID test that is no more than three days old. 

m. Athletics Center Access

The Athletics Center will be open on a limited basis. Some activities (e.g., group exercise classes, intramurals, cardio equipment, etc.) will not be available. Gym users are required to be masked at all times. Disinfecting wipes will be available for users to clean exercise machines or equipment in between use. Gym access will be limited to College students and employees. The College will evaluate any gym limitations throughout the month of January to determine whether to implement changes beginning in February.

n. Sporting Events

Spectators will not be permitted at College athletic competitions for the beginning of the Spring semester. The College will evaluate the limitation on spectators at athletics competitions throughout the month of January to determine whether to implement changes beginning in February.

o. Health Monitoring

It is our goal to monitor the overall health conditions of our campus communities throughout this pandemic. As such, we are asking all faculty, staff, and students to self-report to Human Resources any suspected or positive COVID-19 illnesses via the COVID Hotline at (215) 751-8035 (press “Option 1” for employees or press “Option 2” for students), or via email to COVIDresponse@ccp.edu.  The email should include the employee or student’s J-number and telephone number.

Additionally, faculty who receive reports of students with suspected or confirmed COVID-19 must report any such cases to their respective Dean who will follow the protocol available on the College’s COVID webpage.  

CCP will track and record possible COVID-19 transmission on campus. If transmission is observed, we will contact the PDPH and follow current public health recommendations. The COVID-19 Reporting Guide for Faculty and Staff for Students With COVID-19 can be found on the College’s COVID webpage and will be updated from time to time with the latest contact procedures. 

COVID-19 testing results at the College’s testing site are updated weekly on the College’s COVID webpage in the Weekly COVID-19 Testing Report

If any faculty, staff or student feels sick (COVID-19 or other illness), they should stay home. The College will continue to provide a COVID-19 sick bank of up to 10 days for any vaccinated or exempted employee who tests positive for COVID-19 and cannot work because they are ill from COVID-19 or are required to isolate based on being positive with COVID-19. Employees must provide the College’s Human Resources Department with appropriate medical documentation and complete required College forms to utilize these days. The College will also continue to provide a COVID-19 sick bank for vaccinated or exempted employees who are working on campus and have to quarantine because of an exposure to COVID-19 to the extent that such individuals cannot work from home during such quarantine. Sick days for quarantine periods will be in accordance with the quarantine period recommended by the CDC and/or PDPH but not to exceed 10 working days.

If you are a student and are ill, are in isolation, or need to quarantine, contact your instructor to discuss your need to have academic flexibility during this time. Faculty are encouraged to be flexible with students who need to miss class due to illness or COVID-19 exposure, and are asked to be flexible with deadlines and make virtual options available when possible for students in these circumstances.  

As always, students seeking accommodations for a disability should contact the Center on Disability. Employees seeking accommodations for a disability should contact the Office of Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion.

IV. Cleaning and Disinfection Protocols

CCP will continue routine cleaning and housekeeping practices throughout our buildings. CCP will continue to follow pre-existing cleaning protocols throughout occupied campus buildings. These standard protocols are documented under separate cover and include standard procedures for trash removal, dusting, surface cleaning, mopping and vacuuming. CCP will also follow disinfection protocols in addition to the existing standard cleaning protocols. The disinfection protocols are documented under separate cover and will focus primarily on the disinfection of high touch surfaces throughout our occupied buildings. Additionally, disposable towels for faculty and staff to clean their work surfaces or shared work equipment will be available upon request from Facilities for faculty and staff who wish to have extra cleaning supplies available for their use. Faculty or staff in need of additional cleaning or disinfecting supplies may contact Facilities at (215) 751-8190.

a. Deep/Reactive Cleaning and Disinfection Protocols

If a person is identified as suspected or known to have COVID-19 in one of our campus buildings, additional deep or reactive cleaning may be warranted. It is unknown how long the air inside a room occupied by someone with confirmed COVID-19 remains potentially infectious. As such, CCP will consider factors such as the size of the room and the ventilation system when deciding how long to close off rooms or areas used by ill persons before beginning disinfection. CCP’s reactive cleaning protocol is provided under separate cover.

b. Worker Training

For those conducting enhanced cleaning and disinfection activities, CCP will train employees about the sources of exposure to the virus, the hazards associated with that exposure, and appropriate workplace protocols in place to prevent or reduce the likelihood of exposure. Training will include information about proper cleaning techniques, use of EPA approved disinfectants, and proper personal protective equipment.

V. Confirmed or Suspected Cases of COVID-19 on Campus 

As this pandemic continues, it is possible that a person may be infected with COVID-19 and come to our campus buildings. If a person is identified as suspected or known to have COVID-19, the follow protocols will be implemented:

a. Contract Tracing

Contact tracing is the process of the identification of faculty, staff or students who may have come into close contact with an infected person for a prolonged period of time (within 6’ for 15 minutes or more over a 24-hour period). If the College is notified that a suspected or positive COVID-19 person was on our campus, the College will attempt to determine where that person visited and with whom they may have been in close contact. Screening records, visitor logs and class rosters will continue to be maintained. CCP’s full contact tracing program and COVID exposure protocol is available in the Protocol for Confirmed or Expected COVID-19 on Campus on the College’s website. Faculty, staff or students that have been identified as being a close contact of a confirmed case must follow the appropriate steps as outlined in the College’s COVID exposure protocol. 

b. Area Shut Down Measures

In most cases, we do not anticipate the need to shut down an entire building following the identification of a person with COVID-19. If it has been less than 7 days since the sick employee has been in the building, we will close off any areas used for prolonged periods of time (i.e., greater than 15 minutes) by the infected person (such as a classroom). The area will be closed for approximately 24 hours (if possible) prior to conducting deep/reactive cleaning activities.

Additionally, if a sick person vomits or expels bodily fluids in an area, the room will be immediately evacuated, and these cleaning measures will be implemented. If in an open/common area, the area will be immediately cordoned off in all directions at a minimum of 12’. Custodial Services (either CCP staff or the College’s vendors' cleaning staff) with appropriate Blood Borne Pathogen training will conduct proper cleanup activities.

c. HVAC Operations

In the area that is identified to be shut down, the HVAC system will be turned on to operate 24/7.  Outdoor dampers will be opened to allow 100% outside air (if possible). Exterior windows, if present, will be opened to allow for additional ventilation.

d. Deep/Reactive Cleaning

Following a 24-hour period, the impacted area will be cleaned and disinfected following the deep/reactive cleaning protocols identified above.

e. PDPH Notification

In addition to the above strategy to mitigate and contain the spread of the virus on campus, CCP will notify the PDPH if COVID-19 transmission is identified on our campuses.

VI. Communication and Education

CCP will continue to communicate and educate students, faculty, staff, vendors and visitors on this plan, including but not limited to the vaccination and masking requirements, symptoms and prevention of COVID 19 exposure and transmission, and COVID-19 safety measures.

Conclusion

This COVID-19 Reopening Plan was developed following current federal, state and local guidelines and recommendations. Since we are currently in a pandemic and dealing with a novel virus these recommendations may change without notice. Any questions regarding this plan, may be addressed to the COVID Safety Team at reopening@ccp.edu.