SANTA MONICA—Santa Monica College (SMC) will continue to offer online classes and support services for the winter 2021 intersession, as well as for the 2021 spring semester, the college announced on Monday, September 21. 

In a letter to students and staff, SMC Superintendent/President Dr. Kathryn E. Jeffrey said the lives of the community continue to be impacted by the coronavirus health crisis. 

“The public health emergency persists nationally and locally; it is unlikely that a safe, widely available vaccine will appear this academic year,” Jeffrey said. “The safety, health & wellbeing of SMC colleagues and students is the highest priority.”

SMC has an Emergency Operations Team — according to Jeffrey, they have been closely monitoring the COVID-19 pandemic and making its recommendations “based on current and projected trends and guidelines available from the Los Angeles County Department of Public Health, the Centers for Disease Control & Prevention (CDC), and California’s four-tiered risk assessment system.”

The only exception to the new rule will be the “areas of Nursing, Respiratory Care, and other programs deemed essential by the California Governor’s Office.”

Laboratory/practicum instruction tools for these courses will be accessible on-ground in accordance with public health guidelines, Jeffrey noted. 

SMC will continue to provide an number of resources for students and staff, such as the “Free Chromebook Lending Program” and the “Weekly Drive-Thru Pop-up Food Pantry.”

Jeffrey reminded staff that “additional college personnel and essential courses may transition to an on-ground environment, if conditions and L.A. County Department of Public Health guidelines permit.”

SMC has 15 confirmed cases of COVID-19, according to the school’s COVID-19 response webpage. The SMC’s Airport Arts Campus at 2800 Airport Ave. is a COVID-19 testing location — it is available to anyone for free and open Monday through Friday, from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. by appointment only.