Hendrix College will be starting its fall semester remotely after the board of trustees voted to adjust the college’s opening plan.
According to Board of Trustees Chair Jo Ann Biggs, the decision to open remotely was made as a health precaution. Hendrix officials will be monitoring COVID-19 levels and reportedly are considering returning to on-site instruction later in the fall if conditions improve in Arkansas.
“The Board of Trustees is grateful to Hendrix faculty and staff, as well as campus leaders and community partners, for developing a strategic reopening plan to resume in-person classes safely this fall,” Biggs said in a statement. “The current circumstances require us to re-examine our intentions to begin the semester in person. The health, safety, and well-being of the Hendrix community is, and must continue to be, our highest priority. We look forward to welcoming students back to the Hendrix campus when conditions improve.”
In June, Hendrix had announced its plans to begin its semester earlier and complete on-site instruction before Thanksgiving break. According to a Hendrix news release, faculty members, as well as the Fall 2020 Steering Committee, have prepared for in-person classes since May.
“This was an extremely difficult decision to make, and it is deeply disappointing to us all,” Hendrix President Ellis Arnold said. “Given the current situation and the primarily residential nature of our community, beginning the semester remotely is the most responsible position we can take in order to protect the health, safety and well-being of our students, faculty, and staff.”
In-person classes were canceled at Hendrix on March 13 following the rise of COVID-19 cases in Arkansas. Remote classes began on March 30 and continued for the remainder of the school year.