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Instructional Continuity

What is Instructional Continuity?

At its most basic definition, "instructional continuity" means that in the event of any interruption of college operations, academic and instructional progress would continue.

Key Facts

  • Instructional Continuity refers to a temporary move to remote instruction. The move must be temporary, and must have a specific beginning and end date to meet federal and state guidelines for instructional continuity. The campus will determine the beginning and end dates.
  • Remote instruction does not need to be conducted in Canvas, and the checklist below provides some possible suggestions for temporarily conducting your courses, collecting assignment submissions, discussing course content, and providing lectures.
  • Fully online courses are not affected by Campus closures; Hybrid courses may move their on-campus portion of class to temporary remote instruction via Canvas or Zoom.
  • While it may be tempting to use publisher's products to provide temporary remote instruction, Academic Senate guidelines prohibit the adoption of publisher content without Section 508 approval.
  • If you have a Canvas shell for your on-campus course, you may utilize Canvas tools to facilitate temporary remote instruction. If you need assistance, faculty mentors and the interim Distance Education Coordinator, Maria Fernandez, will be able to provide assistance.
  • Instructional Continuity is temporary. No course outline of record will be altered to allow for "temporary" DE delivery. Temporary remote instruction does not mean that the course becomes a fully online course after the closure is lifted. If going forward, a department wishes to update its course outlines of record to allow for online or hybrid delivery, the department is encouraged to go through the established curriculum update process.

What does it look like? Strategies for maintaining Instructional Continuity include, but are not limited to, the following:

  • Making plans for communicating with students.
  • Considering possible adjustments to assignments while keeping in mind ADA 508 accessibility (not all PDFs are accessible).
  • Implementing technologies such as Zoom, Canvas, Email, Google Docs, Microsoft Teams.

What are faculty obligations for Instructional Continuity?

Instructional continuity is the responsibility of all instructors of record, including full-time faculty, adjuncts and teaching associates.


The checklist is by no mean exhaustive or prescriptive and is meant to help you address issues that may arise in the event of college closure or widespread absences. You may also want to consider how these suggestions could be adapted for single absences (such as one student's prolonged absence due to illness).

Instructional Continuity Preparation Checklist
Issues to Address Possible Solutions
Establish a mode of communication to use in case of an emergency.
  • Ensure students all have access to and are aware of this communication method.
Microsoft Teams
Make your syllabus available digitally. Email
Google Docs
Microsoft Teams
Decide how you will distribute documents and readings during a disruption.
  • Become familiar with the process of making PDFs from hard copies.
  • Familiarize yourself with how to use Library e-reserves.
Library Permalinks or E-books
Google Drive
Microsoft Teams
Designate a centralized place to collect student submissions. Email
COS One Drive
Microsoft Teams
Think about how you would continue class discussion in the event of a disruption. Canvas Discussions
Google Docs
ConferNow (Zoom)
Microsoft Teams
Consider capturing your lecture content for students to watch remotely. ConferNow (Zoom)
Microsoft Teams
Identify an option for holding class and/or office hours virtually. You can fall back on your chosen option if it is expected that several class periods will be missed. ConferNow (Zoom)
Microsoft Teams
Think about how your methods for evaluating student learning could be moved to a digital space. Google Docs
Canvas Assignment
Canvas Quizzes
Settle on an option for providing students with grades and feedback on their work in the event of an emergency. Canvas Assignment
Google Docs
Microsoft Teams

Frequently Asked Questions for Faculty

Information for Faculty and Academic Staff Regarding Academic Continuity

We live in a region where we are at risk for extended campus closures due to weather and fire, and now we are systematically preparing for a potential health related pandemic, COVID-19. Preparedness plans help the institution to identify ways to provide temporary remote instruction and to identify instructional support needs for instructors, staff, and students.

Faculty should work with Distance Learning staff and identified faculty mentors who can provide Canvas assistance and ideas for the range of activities needed to support learning during a period of temporary remote instruction, including:

  • Providing instruction (through synchronous class time, live and recorded lectures)
  • Setting up online office hours (which may be especially important in this situation)
  • Setting up discussion groups, group work, and online writing and reflection
  • Arranging for how students will submit work online and receive feedback and grades
  • Arranging for examinations or exam options

In order to scale up support for faculty in this situation, while the campus remains open, Distance Learning staff will be:

  • Holding daily office hours for faculty (in person and virtual)
  • Visiting department meetings on request
  • Providing one-on-one support for faculty where necessary

Faculty may also contact Distance Learning staff or identified faculty mentors to discuss how to ensure academic integrity. Faculty should hold office hours online, via Canvas, Zoom, or similar, just as they would have on campus. Students may also sign up for office hours online using Google Calendar, Canvas or by sending an email to their instructor with a request for an appointment via other means such as Skype.

Please see the links below for additional resources:

(Aug. 11, 2020) All Faculty teaching remote via Zoom or online via Canvas are required to be online certified. Please note, if you cannot produce proof of online certification and/or your course has not been locally DE approved by Dec. 31, 2020, you will not be able to teach online or via Zoom starting Spring 2021. No exceptions will be made. The College is currently working on a plan that will provide faculty with the opportunity to complete DE Certification requirements by the indicated deadline.

Faculty will need to ensure that everything posted in Canvas/Online is accessible. For guidance please see the 'Guidance on Accommodations for Students with Disabilities in a Pandemic' document (*Note: this document was developed by Mt. SAC and revised to reflect COS information).

Also, there is a strange phenomenon that has ascended, ZOOMbombing. It’s when uninvited individuals enter Zoom Meetings and disrupt the discussions with vulgar and uninvited language. This typically occurs after a Zoom link has been posted publically. Follow these tips to prevent your lecture and/or meeting from being Zoombombed: How to Avoid the Zoombomb

(Aug. 11, 2020) All employees/students returning from travel, or relocating from, outside Siskiyou County must provide documentation of a negative COVID-19 test taken after August 1, 2020. In the case of an individual who previously tested positive, clearance to enter campus must be obtained from a medical professional and, prior to being allowed on campus to begin in-person instruction, the individual should isolate for 14 days if prescribed by the Siskiyou County Public Health Department. Area of Commute is excluded from mandatory testing while conducting normal activities.

Employees are directed to follow COVID-19 guidelines and practice social distancing, as recommended by the State of California, the CDC and Siskiyou Public Health.

(March 19, 2021) When you arrive to campus, you will be required to:

  • Self-monitor before arrival with HealthScan app.
  • When on the Weed Campus, enter via College Ave and drive toward kiosk in lot "A". During inclement weather periods, please check-in at the TRiO Center. For those not teaching, working or enrolled in classes at the Yreka campus, the Yreka campus is open by appointment only. Visitors or prospective students can schedule an appointment by emailing or calling (530) 938-5550.
  • Provide confirmation of daily self-monitor completion or park in identified stall for on-spot self-monitoring.

Employees will be provided with a wristband. Employees who have walked or bussed to the Weed campus can check-in at the TRIO Center after 8AM or at lot “A” prior to entering any other building on campus. Employees who have walked or bussed to the Yreka campus can check-in at the Welcome Center.

(Nov. 18, 2020) Yes! The process is as follows (please note, this is for items purchased by the District (ex. Chair, monitor, etc..):

  1. Complete the Faculty Equipment Check Out Form
  2. Submit the form via email to your respective Director/Dean who will then forward to the Vice President of Academic Affairs
  3. Once approved, the appropriate Happy Fox/School Dude requests will be submitted and then you will be contacted to schedule a day/time for pick up.

Please inform your students to:

  • Sign-up for COS Connect:
  • Check their email often for updates
  • Expect that classes will operate as scheduled unless otherwise notified and, expect to continue participating in classes through a campus closure
  • Identify technology means to access their courses remotely in the instance of a campus closure
  • Communicate with their instructor(s) if they have questions/concerns

For more information, feel free to direct your students to the Student FAQ page.

A move to instructional continuity will not affect Faculty compensation.

The Families First Coronavirus Response Act (FFCRA or Act) that provided employees with paid sick leave and expanded family and medical leave for specified reasons related to COVID-19 expired on December 31, 2020.

The District will be providing supplemental COVID 19 Paid Sick leave up to 80 hours between January 1, 2022 and June 30, 2022. In the event that special COVID 19 leave is provided at the Federal or State level during this period of time, the District leave will be discontinued. Please make sure that you keep your supervisor informed if requesting COVID 19 leave. Please reference the form for criteria for using supplemental leave.
District Supplemental COVID 19 Paid Sick Leave (PDF)

For questions regarding leave related to COVID-19, please contact Human Resources.
Phone: (530) 938-5317