Senior staff at De Anza answer questions about returning to campus


Lianna V

Attendees of the Chancellor’s return-to-campus information session listen for answers to their questions.

After De Anza College faculty raised concerns in an open letter about returning to campus, Chancellor Judy Miner invited the co-signers of the letter to ask questions in the Q&A section for her return-to-campus information session.

Some answers from senior staff were uncertain, as public health orders continue to change.

“We’re not exactly sure what safety measures are going to be needed when we come back in fall,” said Pam Grey, vice president of Administrative Services. “If I had a crystal ball, which I don’t, we’d already be setting up for that.”

Grey said that there are plenty of masks and hand sanitizer for students, staff and faculty if needed. Miner, though, said she expects more relaxed restrictions by then.

“We are expecting that we won’t have social distancing or room capacity requirements (in the fall quarter),” Miner said.

Miner shared the timeline for a District-wide vaccination policy and said she hoped to have one reviewed by the Board of Trustees by mid-July. The vaccination policy is copied from the California State University policy.

Staff also asked about new air circulation standards to ensure COVID-19-safe air quality in classrooms and buildings.

“We are looking at a couple of different options to add to our different loops,” said Jennifer Mahato, director of college operations. “I believe it’s some form of ionization or another type of UV system, so we’ve asked to start that investigation.”

People also raised concerns about the lack of a campus-wide committee for students, faculty and staff to make shared decisions and receive up-to-date and accurate information.

”It is very important that you’re engaging in those conversations with your dean or whoever the manager is in your department,” De Anza President Lloyd Holmes said. “It is important that we engage with the union, our faculty senates, our Classified Senate so that we can address those working conditions as we move forward.”

Tim Shively, president of the Faculty Association, said that faculty didn’t feel included despite Holmes’ promise to engage with them several months ago.

“Back in March, when President Holmes first rolled out the return to campus plan at different phases, he talked a lot about involving the union,” Shively said. “We haven’t been very involved as of yet.”

In closing the session, Chancellor Miner said some questions, like those from the Zoom chat, may be addressed on the Foothill-De Anza District website.