St.Mary's University

An orientation session, targeting instructors in the undergraduate program, was held here on campus on November 7, 2020. In line with MoSHE’s policy document titled “Directive on Reopening of Higher Education and Training Institutions amid COVID-19 Pandemic”, the orientation focused on adhering to the COVID-19 safety protocols inside classrooms and handling students’ psychosocial problems. The discussion highlighted the preparations made to resume classes and the importance of guidance and counseling that some of the students might need to cope with the academic challenges. Having realized that course requirements might put students under pressure to the level of exacerbating their uneasiness caused by the Pandemic, joining hands and sharing classroom experiences was found to be necessary to minimize the difficulties they encounter. To this effect, it was made clear that each instructor should respond to a student’s queries politely with due consideration of his/her state of mind.

In view of the above and in light of the accomplishment of the online delivery of courses during the stay-at-home period prompted by the Government’s decree, graduating students’ in-person class sessions would last for a month including exams. The mode of assessment too has been planned to make it online, instead of paper based, to ward off the spread of the virus.

Instructors were also informed of the establishment of university-wide Taskforce entrusted with overseeing the activities of committees designated for closely monitoring whether COVID-19 protocols were put in place. Accordingly, the committees, numbering three, would be in charge of the separate responsibilities of handling Governance and Inputs, Information Dissemination and Sensitization, and Academic Affairs. As stated during the discussion, a sub-committee, comprising staff, specializing in Psychology, has also been formed to handle matters related to Guidance and Counseling. Instructors raised issues pertaining to resources and campus security, which should be taken care of by the management and campus community.

At the orientation session were the V/P for Research and International Relations, the EVP, the Director for Academic Affairs and the Associate Registrar.

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