We are halfway through the semester, and this Fall 2020 semester in the English Language Academy has been a unique challenge. Just as the entirety of UWM has been adapting to the new challenges presented by the Covid-19 pandemic, the English Language Academy worked around these challenges as well.
With great flexibility from our teachers and administrative staff, we are still operating classes even during these uncertain times. Below are ways that the English Language Academy is ensuring the safety and health of our staff and students while also offering courses for international students and domestic English Language Learners.
Providing Personal Protective Equipment
At the beginning of the semester, our department wanted to ensure that we took every step necessary to ensure that our staff and students had the tools they needed to protect each other from the spread of Covid-19. We provided all of our staff and teachers with multiple face masks, face shields, hand sanitizer, and departmental cleaning supplies.
Following UWM’s in-person guidelines
In addition to providing personal protective equipment, the English Language Academy is practicing in-person guidelines and recommendations both in our classrooms and in our offices.
All persons are required to wear a mask while in any building. We are especially enforcing this rule when it comes to our classes being held in-person for our Intensive English Program. All teachers and students are required to wear masks during the entire time that they are inside the building and in class.
Teachers and students are also maintaining social distancing as much as possible. This means that all of our classes are small. Our largest class has six students in it. We ensure that teachers and students maintain at least 6 feet of distance between each other during class time.
Teachers are responsible for wiping down technological equipment and desks at the end of their classes.
Lastly, teachers and students are paying attention to their health. Any student or teacher exhibiting symptoms is required to stay home and not come to class, get a Covid-19 test, and inform those who they were in contact with.
Thankfully, up to this point, both our staff and our students have managed to stay safe and healthy during these trying times.
Offering choice when it comes to learning
The English Language Academy Intensive English Program is currently offering in-person classes and plans to continue to do so until we are instructed otherwise by the university.
However, for students who have chosen to study English from their home countries or from the safety of their homes here in the United States, all in-person classes are recorded and put onto the class Canvas sites so that students can access them. Additionally, students are able to submit assignments online and are able to meet with their teacher one-on-one virtually when needed.
The English Language Academy also takes the health of our teachers into consideration as well. For our teachers who are concerned with their health and unable to teach classes in-person, they are teaching virtually, and we have in-class facilitator interns who are helping students in person with any questions they may have and with in-class assignments.
By remaining flexible and adapting as much as possible during these difficult times, the English Language Academy is doing everything we can to help our students to continue to succeed and meet their English language and academic goals.
Learn more about the English Language Academy Intensive English Program classes and curriculum here. Questions? Email us at firstname.lastname@example.org.