John Capps, Muriel Mickles, Lewis Bryant, David Lightfoot, Chris Bryant, Kris Ogden, Will Sandidge, Randall Franklin, Jeff Sydenstricker, Cynthia Deutsch, Elizabeth Narehood, Jim Tuite, Raylene Cope, Sarah Jarrett,
Minutes of the August 3, 2020 meetings were approved as written.
Agenda Item: CVCC 2020-2021 Budget Approved
Dr. Capps welcomed the new President of the Faculty Association, Jim Tuite, to the Cabinet meeting. Dr. Capps stated that Dr. Cynthia Deutsch, the former President of the FA will continue to serve as a member of the PC by virtue of her position and service on the VCCS Strategic Planning task force. Cynthia possesses a unique perspective of what is taking place in the VCCS, and we will greatly benefit from her insights.
Dr. Capps stated that Lewis Bryant is presenting a formal request for the approval of the official budget.
Lewis Bryant presented the budget for approval. He stated that adopting this budget is with the understanding that it will be revised at a later date. Lewis Bryant reported that CVCC may have a much richer budget than originally hoped.
Lewis stated that this budget is based on a 20% reduction in enrollment, which may change. This budget includes the original projected budget cut of a million dollars; however, budget cuts from the state may or may not happen or may be much less serve than we planned for in this budget. By approving this budget today, it is with the understanding that it will be amended to adjust to all these variances at a later date.
Lewis reported that the budget also reflects the CARES money that will cover $800,000 of faculty salaries for those that transition to virtual or hybrid instructions from face to face.
Dr. Capps stated that in essence, we are adopting a budget that that will be adjusted based upon additional information. This is the process being adopted across the Commonwealth.
Dr. Capps asked if there were any questions for Lewis. There were none. Dr. Capps asked that there be a motion for the approval of the budget. Dr. Mickles made a motion and Randall Franklin seconded the motion. The budget was approved unanimously by the cabinet.
Dr. Muriel Mickles reported that the first week of classes got off to an excellent start in this unusual environment. We had a few students show up on campus, but far less than expected. We were able to assist them with their needs. Muriel thanked all the staff and faculty that were involved in helping the students.
Muriel reported that enrollment is getting better and better. The back out will be on the census date for each of the sessions. Counselors, Navigators, and many others are reaching out to students to remind them to pay their tuition, to find out if they need assistance, and to ask how they are doing in their classes. Michael and Ryan are working to help each student with their specific needs.
Muriel reported that Growing in Canvas was a huge success, and she credited Ed McGee for getting the program up and running. Faculty were extremely responsive, and we are getting ready to pay out the stipends that we promised full-time and adjunct faculty.
Muriel reported that that an equity work group was formed. The equity work group members are Elizabeth, Cynthia, Philmika and Dr. Mickles. The groups goals and mission will be forthcoming. Thanks to Elizabeth and the Title III Grant, about 20 e-books and 7 hard cover books of, From Equity Talk to Equity Walk were purchased for many of the Vice President’s staff. We are planning to discuss this book in a book club format.
Dr. Capps stated that last week there were about 200 outstanding tuition payments and about the same number of dual enrollment students that had not registered. Dr. Capps asked if Muriel had an update on unpaid tuitions and dual enrollment students.
Muriel reported that some of the school districts have not been able to provide CVCC with a list of their dual enrollment students because of all the other challenges within their school district this fall. As soon as we receive the list of students, we will register them in the appropriate classes. Dual enrollment numbers are expected to be similar to last years. We are working with each school systems very closely to keep communication opened and to assist as needed.
Muriel reported Michael Farris and Ryan McNamara are working with those Early College students who will receive financial aid.
Dr. Capps noted that the first week went smoother than anticipated. CVCC had made dramatic progress in our relative standing int the VCCS ratings. We have moved from last to somewhere in the middle. This is attributed to all the work that everyone, particularly those in enrollment management have done. We are grateful for their Herculean efforts.
David Lightfoot reported that there is ETF money from 2020 that needs to be spent quickly. David stated that he will send a spreadsheet to supervisors with instructions. The idea is to know which faculty and staff employees need a mobile device. David stated he needs this information very soon, so the devices can be ordered using the ETF money from 2020.
Dr. Kris Ogden reported that everyone should be thrilled that CVCC was able to reopen this fall. Kris stated that our governance meetings reconvene this week and they will all be attended virtually. Natalie has worked hard to get the rosters for each committee and meetings posted on Communique. Please encourage everyone to attend. We need to stay focused.
Chris Bryant stated that the Foundation has had a good scholarship season so far, they are still working with financial aid to ensure that all of the scholarship dollars are spent. He applauded Catherine and her effort to make sure that they stay on top of that, because this has been a very tough summer and fall.
Chris reported that they will focus on the Alumni Association this fall. They will create virtual events monthly so that alumni can be engaged with the needs of the college. Alumni Relations is critical.
Chris reported that on the marketing front they will have a second wave of paid marketing advertisements that will share more information on the second eight-week classes. Also, continue to brand CVCC as the Right Choice, Right Now. Chris stated that they are working on grants too.
Dr. Capps stated that the second eight-week classes will be a second chance for those students who did not get their financial aid in time for the beginning of the semester.
Raylene Cope reported that last Thursday was scheduled to be the first CSA meeting, but of course it was a little bit busy for everyone trying to make sure that students were all in place. Instead we sent a survey to all CSA members asking what would be some things that they would like to do remotely? Responses were wonderful. One idea is to have a meeting and discuss how everyone is doing. Another was to have a live 30-minute concert on Zoom during lunch. This is a fun way to keep everyone connected. Raylene stated she knew of a few employees who were musical and asked everyone to send her names of musical employees who may be interested in such an activity.
Raylene stated that CSA hoped several Administrators would do a cameo appearance at a CSA meeting during the year. Raylene asked Randall Franklin to do a cameo appearance about various HR items.
Dr. Capps stated that it is important to have creative ways that keep us all in touch with one another.
Raylene stated that the CSA considered having colors associated with different days of the week.
Dr. Cynthia Deutsch reported that the task force is moving along. Cynthia is the leader for the teaching and learning group. Essentially, each group has about a month to gather information. We will gather insight from the ACOP and COD meetings by talking with their members, especially the deans. We are working on creating a faculty/student focus group asynchronously. The goal is to have discussions on what is and what is not working.
Cynthia reported that the Chancellor asked that the initial goals for the strategic plan be ready by mid- October.
Cynthia stated that there is no official definition of what ‘equity’ means. She is hoping that the equity work group will create an official definition.
Sarah Jarrett reported that the Part-Time Staff Association has not met. Still trying to figure out, when is the best time for us to meet to accommodate the most people, we may end up kind of alternating days.
Sarah added that she would like to meet with Raylene to discuss the live concert idea. Sarah suggested that a musical brown bag with several of the groups and committees doing something together would be fun. Sarah stated Trivia and Pictionary would be activities to explore.
Elizabeth Narehood reported that she is trying to work within each of the divisions to see how Title III funds can best be used as we are going into this new normal. Title III will try to fill gaps wherever we can.
Elizabeth stated that they are pulling all of their data from last year to give to our external evaluator. Elizabeth thanked Kris Ogden, Kevin Riley, and Evan Abatecola for their support with the data information.
Elizabeth added that Title III is supporting Chris Bryant with a grant project and the equity work group with the purchase of books.
Dr. Capps stated that the pandemic has sensitized us to the inequities that do exit among our students and really compelled us to act to eliminate those inequities. We need to be proactive in areas like diversity, inequity, and inclusion. Elizabeth, we appreciate your original suggestion that we form this special focus group on equity and we look forward to the results.
Jim Tuite thanked David for the work that IT did at the Campbell County Technical Center for the Early College program. The technology there was just not adequate to teach split classes. David was able to get technology out there so that we could actually teach these classes.
Now, the students are able to be in two different classes at the same time and actually get instruction. So, I wanted to thank David for that.
Jim stated that he was not a big fan of virtual real-time classes, but the students do appreciate this mode of delivery. Jim reported that he has a Lynchburg Early College virtual real-time class that when the class is over many students stay on for 20 to 30 minutes just to talk. They talk with him and the other students – just to get that social interaction that they may not be getting otherwise.
Jim stated that the faculty need guidance on proctored testing. Actual guidelines. There are faculty that are adamant that proctored testing is a must. The students will cheat. So, between Student Success and the College we need to come up with some pretty hard guidelines.
Jim asked that if the budget ended up better than expected, could we revisit professional development because it has helped many of our faculty get advanced degrees.
Will Sandidge stated that he hopes to have some definitive guidelines for proctored testing by next week.
Dr. Capps stated that it is fair to say that the budget is going to be much better than originally anticipated. As soon as the General Assembly officially ratifies it, we will know that there will not be a budget cut for this year. The governor has already proposed that there be no budget cut for state agencies. The budget had anticipated a 10% budget cut. So that is almost a million dollars right there. If the enrollment should come in at minus 10% rather than minus 20% that is another million dollars. Dr. Capps stated he is reluctant to spend all that money because we balanced the budget by drawing upon funding from our rainy-day fund. All of the information that we get out of Richmond right now says that next year is going to be a more challenging budget year than this year. So, we need to try to save as much funding as we possibly can. In the event that we need to apply it to our budget next year. To your specific point, if it does, indeed, turn out that enrollment is 10% and officially there's no budget, then we can go back and review the way in which we have distributed the funding in the budget and we can raise the possibility of reinstituting some of those professional development funds.
Dr. Capps stated that we need to address our reopening, we also need to address the issue that we communicated last week that we have now begun to see some positive cases on campus. So, I am hoping that the three of you will address those issues. So, Will do you want to kick off?
Will Sandidge reported that the Reopening Plan enabled the college to have a smooth opening to the semester. Even though our plan aligned with the Virginia Department of Health 100%, things always come up.
Will reported that the Reopening committee is asking for input from people, things that went well, things we could have done better. One, people are still scared of COVID19 and they are being very cautious. Secondly, the Bookstore. We need a meeting with the AVP, Muriel, Lewis, and the bookstore. It appears that the sections were changed to reflect the new modes of delivery and this was very challenging for the bookstore.
Will suggested that we develop the spring 2021 schedule and have the classes reflect the virtual delivery modes.
Will suggested that there be a few more people on campus to help students with questions. Everybody has been very helpful as well as Jeff and his people, but I think we need more of a structured coverage out there. So not sure. Talks with faculty may help simplify some processes.
Will reported that Jason has faculty that have never taught online and have a problem with Canvas. We need to ensure that our faculty understand how to teach online. Many of the trade’s faculty have never taught online.
Dr. Capps agreed with Will that a Zoom meeting with the Follett Bookstore was an excellent idea.
He pointed out that the fall schedule was thrown together post-haste because we really did not have a lot of time to make all the changes to the schedule. As we approach the spring schedule, we do have the luxury of more time so we can approach that schedule more thoughtfully and more deliberately to eliminate some of the conflicts that you have talked about.
Dr. Capps stated the alignment of the classes is not very user friendly for all our students. We need to make changes for the benefit of our students. We know that we will continue with the same sort of virtual schedule for the spring as we have right now.
Will stated that the Reopening committee meeting will start looking at spring 2021. This will give us time to work out all the bugs and hope it will be better.
Raylene Cope stated that Zoom classes back to back present a scheduling conflict. Also, if a student has a Zoom class and then has a physical lab, they will need to be on campus. Is it possible for students to schedule time in the computer lab with Pam?
Randall Franklin reported that employees tested positive for the COVID 19 virus last week and this was communicated to the campus community. We have a core group that worked really well together to make sure that we've been in compliance as far as notifying, not just the campus community but individuals that that may have been exposed or in contact with those individuals that did test positive.
Randall stated that we are meeting all the timelines and we are getting information out to the community on the website. Randall is the number one contact for the Department of Labor and Industry. Randall stated that they called and needed some details regarding the exposures that the individuals had and they were really glad to know that the cases were not related. Different departments. They indicated that in some area businesses that they've had some difficulty nailing down where the individuals may have gotten exposed and, in our cases, we can clearly say it did not happen at the college. Other than that, they really just wanted to know what actions we have taken since then. As far as the deep cleaning and all that is in the information that we put out there as well. So, I think we'v answered all the questions they had. We are just waiting for the form to arrive, so we can get it back to them.
Randall stated that the groups work really well together to make sure we were in compliance with everything that we needed to get done.
Dr. Capps stated that what they had decided to do is to form another group and this is the group that Randall refers to as the core group and thinking of it as a kind of incident management team to manage the cases as they come up. We have addressed the issues completely. We decided to be completely transparent when communicating this information.
Dr. Capps stated that on the CVCC website is a COVID19 section to document all of the cases that occur on campus. We did send a news release out acknowledging that there have been cases on campus. We do not plan to send out a communication every time that a new case surfaces, but correct and timely information will be available on the website.
Dr. Capps stated “What I can't stress enough is not just that all of us take the appropriate precautions, but that we limit our work on campus as much as we possibly can and come to campus only when we need to conduct essential business.”
Jeff Sydenstricker reported that he spoke with Dr Gateley again this morning again he has been phenomenal to work with as far as answering our many questions that come up. So, while we have some guidelines, we still try to reach out to VDH and talk to Dr Gateley. We can post to him, get on the phone with him and ask him direct questions that relate directly to the case that we are looking at now, not just kind of general questions.
Jeff stated that he spoke with Dr. Gateley this morning, he did clarify quite a few things as far as what he considers close contact, which will help us moving forward. As far as contact tracing, one thing that we were kind of surprised to learn is that tracing contact is squarely on our shoulders.
Jeff stated that he is the contact person for the VDH to start the contact tracing and since our first case that we reported on the 26th, they have not talk to me yet. So, if we had waited on them, we would have been significantly behind the eight ball. The group as a whole decided that we would move forward and do that on our own. We were better off because we stopped the possibility of spread just by being ahead of the curve and not waiting on the Department of Health. I assume at some point they will reach out to us, but again, I think they are just overwhelmed with all the colleges coming back and all the numbers that I saw in the News and Advance today.
Jeff reported that close contact is within six feet for 15 minutes Some of the folks that we have contacted probably didn't reach that threshold, but just to error on the side of caution, we went ahead and had them quarantine.
Dr. Capps stated that Jeff has done a stellar job in maintaining connections and getting our questions answered and providing us with the information that we needed to make decisions.
Lewis Bryant stated that he was thankful for George and John and everything they have done so the areas that we have discussed have all been cleaned and disinfected. In fact, the one that we learned about at 11:30 was already disinfected one time, and it has been disinfected again this morning. The areas are being addressed almost as soon as they come to light. John and George have done exemplary work as well. Absolutely no question about that.
Jeff asked Lewis if there were any changes needed to make sure we are hitting these higher traffic areas more often.
Lewis Bryant stated that facilities is cleaning them after every use. There is a lot of cleaning during the day and again overnight. After the exposure or the concern takes place, there is cleaning and a spray disinfecting solution that is liberally applied in those areas, that is your deep cleaning. That is an additional cleaning. There are three or four levels of cleaning that are taking place throughout the workday.
With no further business, the meeting adjourned at 2:33 p.m. The next President’s Staff meeting is scheduled for September 14, 2020.
Submitted by Mary Zoccola