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COVID-19 Vaccinations and Flu Shots Available

Effective October 11, students taking face-to-face classes and employees working onsite must provide proof of a complete COVID-19 vaccination or receive an approved medical or religious exemption from the College. 

Palomar College Student Health Services and Champions for Health are hosting the following vaccination opportunity for Palomar College students, employees and their families.

Thursday, November 18 from 2:00 p.m. to 6:00 p.m.
Student Quad at the main campus in San Marcos
Flu Shots and COVID-19 Vaccinations

 

Vaccination Policy for Students and Employees is Effective October 11

Effective October 11, students taking face-to-face classes and employees working onsite must provide proof of a complete COVID-19 vaccination or receive an approved medical or
religious exemption from the College.  Students and employees with an approved medical or religious exemption will undergo a required weekly diagnostic screening for COVID-19.  The screenings are at no cost and will take place on the main campus and education centers.  A schedule of screening locations and times is pending.

Students can upload their vaccination information or request a religious or medical exemption by using this guide in English and in Spanish.

Employees who desire to request an exemption from the COVID-19 Vaccination mandate for medical reasons, must complete this employee medical exemption form.  Those seeking an exemption for religious reasons, should complete the employee religious exemption form.  Employees who have been fully vaccinated, but have not yet submitted proof of vaccination, can send proof to Human Resources in one of three ways:
1. (PREFERRED) Send an email to benefits@palomar.edu. In the subject line, enter “COVID-19 Proof of Vaccination”, and include your name, employee ID#, and proof.
2. U.S. Mail: Palomar College (Attn: Benefits Office), 1140 W. Mission Rd., San Marcos, CA 92069
3. Fax: (760) 761-3530
If you have lost or misplaced your physical vaccination card, please visit Digital COVID-19 Vaccine Record (ca.gov) to obtain a replacement digital copy of your vaccination card for submission. You may also call the site you received your vaccination to request an additional physical vaccination card.

Thank you for doing your part in keeping our learning and working environments safe.

 

Parking Update – No Parking Fees for Fall 2021 semester

We hope your fall semester is going well and that you are staying safe and healthy.  We reviewed our on-campus parking policy and we have determined during the Fall 2021 semester, no parking fees will be charged to students who are required to visit the main campus or one of the Palomar College Education Centers.

Your success is our top priority!   Please connect with Student Services to address your needs.  Don’t forget we have a Quick Guide to Student Resources designed to point you in the right direction on a variety of topics, including emergency food and housing assistance.  You may also find additional information in our Student FAQs section of our website.

Stay well!

Clarification Issued on COVID-19 Vaccination Mandate for Employees and Students

It is imperative to understand the District’s steadfast commitment to the health and safety of students and employees.  The COVID-19 Vaccination Mandate for employees working onsite and students enrolled in face-to-face courses was clarified today by Superintendent/President Dr. Star Rivera-Lacey.

By October 11, both students and employees are required to submit proof of a COVID-19 vaccination or submit a request for a religious or medical exemption.  Those with an approved exemption will be required to submit to weekly COVID-19 testing.  Testing will be made available at the main campus in San Marcos and at the education centers in Fallbrook, Escondido, and Rancho Bernardo.  There is no cost for testing and will be scheduled during campus hours of operation.  The testing schedule details are forthcoming.

Employees who desire to request an exemption from the COVID-19 Vaccination mandate for medical reasons, must complete this employee medical exemption form.  Those seeking an exemption for religious reasons, should complete the employee religious exemption form.  Employees who have been fully vaccinated, but have not yet submitted proof of vaccination, can send proof to Human Resources in one of three ways:
1. (PREFERRED) Send an email to benefits@palomar.edu. In the subject line, enter “COVID-19 Proof of Vaccination”, and include your name, employee ID#, and proof.
2. U.S. Mail: Palomar College (Attn: Benefits Office), 1140 W. Mission Rd., San Marcos, CA 92069
3. Fax: (760) 761-3530
If you have lost or misplaced your physical vaccination card, please visit Digital COVID-19 Vaccine Record (ca.gov) to obtain a replacement digital copy of your vaccination card for submission. You may also call the site you received your vaccination to request an additional physical vaccination card.  Palomar College employees should address all mandate related concerns or questions to their supervisor.

Students taking face-to-face courses can submit proof of vaccination or submit a request for a religious or medical exemption from the COVID-19 vaccine through the My Palomar Student Portal.
Specific instructions to do so are available here.  If students are unable to complete one of the above requirements by Monday, October 11, they should email vpstudentservices@palomar.edu.

The College has several vaccination clinics planned.  The schedule is available here. You can find a complete list of the College’s COVID-19 mitigation and prevention strategies here.

Vaccination and Diagnostic Testing Notification

As you are likely aware, the Pfizer vaccine was fully approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) on Monday, August 23.  This action by the FDA triggers the activation of the Palomar College Vaccination and Immunization Plans for all employees and students taking face-to-face courses.

As originally designed, the District’s COVID-19 Vaccination and Immunization Plan, provides students taking face-to-face classes and all employees with six (6) weeks from the effective date of the vaccine receiving full FDA approval to become fully vaccinated.  To provide students and employees with a more reasonable amount of time to provide proof of complete vaccination, or receive an approved medical or religious exemption, the Emergency Operations Center (EOC) and EOC Policy team have established Monday, October 11 as the deadline for all employees and students taking face-to-face courses to comply.

Employees are able to submit proof of vaccination by emailing a copy of their vaccination record to benefits@palomar.edu.

Students
taking face-to-face courses can submit proof of vaccination or a request for a religious or medical exemption from the COVID-19 vaccine through the My Palomar student portal. Instructions to do so are available here.

Due to the expectation that we will have students and employees filing for a COVID-19 vaccine exemption, we have established a mandatory weekly diagnostic screening of unvaccinated employees working onsite, and unvaccinated students taking courses onsite. The testing will begin on October 11.   It is important to understand that the testing procedure is in addition to the health and safety measures currently in place.  You can find a complete list of COVID-19 mitigation and prevention strategies here.

We also have convenient vaccination clinics scheduled at the main campus and education centers.  You can find the vaccination event schedule here.

Because we are within a critical point of the semester to retain our students, the EOC and EOC Policy team are collaborating to add to our existing COVID-19 mitigation and prevention strategies during the fall semester.  These efforts are currently being discussed with our collective bargaining units.

Palomar College employees should address their concerns or questions to their supervisor.  Students are encouraged to email vpstudentservices@palomar.edu with questions.

COVID-19 Mitigation and Management

Mitigating the Spread Of COVID-19

  • Campus entry and building entry signage notifies employees, students, and visitors of requirement of the following to enter campus to be:
    • Symptom free,
    • Wearing a facial covering
    • In possession of a campus pass
  • Campus entry signage notifies all students, employees, and visitors of the requirement to wear a facial covering indoors, regardless of vaccination status
  • District is requiring employees and students to use a health pre-screening questionnaire accessible via the personal link provided in a no-reply@cleared4work.com email sent to their Palomar College email.  Community members, students and employees may access the health pre-screening questionnaire at kiosks located at:
    • the main campus inside the Police Department lobby, cashier’s office, main area of student services
    • the main lobby of the Rancho Bernardo Education Center
    • the main lobby of the Escondido Education Center
    • the student services center (building A) at the Fallbrook Education Center
  • Students and employees may be asked to show proof of a campus pass from the Cleared4 health questionnaire.
  • Employees, students and visitors who become ill while on campus are requested to complete a COVID-19 questionnaire. The COVID-19 Response Action Team will manage all cases (see below).
  • The class schedule has been designed to prevent gatherings in hallways and common areas.
  • Every classroom scheduled for in-person learning has a supply of disposable facial coverings.
  • Every department has a supply of disposable facial coverings.
  • Every employee in need of a facial covering can request a reusable facial covering by submitting a facilities request.
  • All work schedules are staggered to avoid over populating work spaces of those needed to provide essential services to students and campus operations.
  • Social distancing signage has been installed in high traffic areas indoors and outdoors (i.e. student services center)
  • “Please use hand sanitizer” signage is placed throughout the campus and hand sanitizer is available.
  • The facilities department has remedied concerns related to the HVAC systems on the main campus and education centers. You can find an update here.
  • Employees should submit their proof of vaccination to benefits@palomar.edu
  • A working document containing the hours of operation for all departments on campus can be found here.

Management of COVID-19 Cases

  • The District Administrators designed a COVID-19 Response Action Team (CRAT) in summer 2020 to manage COVID-19 cases on the main campus and education centers. To date, there have been no outbreaks within the District.
  • Our Health Services team attends regularly scheduled meetings with the San Diego County Department of Public Health and other institutions of higher education in the region. Data shared and guidance informs recommendations by the Emergency Operations Center (EOC)and CRAT.
  • CRAT Protocol
    • Every COVID-19 case received through the COVID-19 questionnaire is triaged and every individual is interviewed by our health services team.
    • If a positive COVID-19 case is reported, the CRAT utilizes a communication system that includes email and telephone notifications of parties who may have been exposed and contacts facilities to request a disinfection of the area(s).
    • Every case received is assigned a case manager who stays in contact with the individual until they return to work or school, to make sure the resources available are known to the student or employee.
    • If there are three or more high risk cases (positive for COVID-19 or exposure to a positive COVID-19 individual), the Policy committee of the Emergency Operations Center (EOC) calls an emergency meeting to evaluate the need to pause or discontinue a course, program or service.

Palomar College Releases COVID-19 Recovery Plan for Fall 2021

The Palomar College COVID-19 Recovery Plan (PCCRP) is designed to support a safe and healthy return to on-campus work and learning beginning in Fall 2021.  We have also updated our Return to Campus Frequently Asked Questions.  You can find them here.  It is important to note, the PCCRP will be updated as the status of the pandemic changes in our region.  Our main priority is to keep our students, employees, and campus community safe. The District will continue to monitor the situation and provide immediate updates if any changes occur.

  • The PCCRP represents the current status for the College, it may change as guidance is issued by the County of San Diego Public Health Department, Cal/OSHA, the California State Department of Public Health and the Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).
  • The Governing Board approved BP 7330and AP 7330 and reviewed and accepted the COVID-19 Employee Vaccination and Immunization Plan, which is included in the PCCRP.
  • The Governing Board also approved BP 5210 and AP 5210, which apply to students, and will receive and review the COVID-19 Vaccination and Immunization Plan for students at an upcoming meeting. This document is also included in the PCCRP.
  • The PCCRP also includes the COVID-19 Prevention Plan, which provides resources and direction to aid in the enforcement of the important health and safety measures designed to mitigate the spread of the COVID-19 virus and related variants.
  • The main campus and education centers will re-open to the general public on August 16 and our community partners will be able to reserve space through our standard Use of Facilities Request process at least three weeks in advance of the event/activity date.

Students and employees must be adhere to the following:

  • Prior to coming to campus, students and employees are required to complete the daily health pre-screening form on the My Palomar App. Information on the App is available here.
  • While indoors, all employees, students and visitors to campus are required to wear a facial covering, regardless of vaccination status. This includes classrooms and all campus meeting spaces.
  • Face coverings do not need to be worn outside, regardless of vaccination status. However, students and employees who are not fully vaccinated are encouraged to wear a face covering outside when six (6) feet of social distancing is not possible.
  • Employees are prohibited from asking other employees and students about their vaccination status, as this is medically confidential information.

The following is specific guidance for employees:

  • Fully vaccinated employees may take their face covering off when working in their office alone.
  • The College continues to make safety a top priority, and having full knowledge of the number of vaccinated employees allows us to plan and implement plans accordingly. As such, the College is requiring that all employees submit their vaccination status if they have not already provided proof of vaccination. Human Resources will email a “Vaccination Confirmation Form” to all employees who have not yet submitted a proof a vaccination. This form should be completed as soon as possible, but no later than September 30, 2021.
  • If you have been fully vaccinated, but have not yet submitted proof of vaccination, please send proof to Human Resources in one of three ways:
  1. (PREFERRED) Send an email to benefits@palomar.edu. In the subject line, enter “COVID-19 Proof of Vaccination”, and include your name, employee ID#, and proof.
  2. S. Mail: Palomar College (Attn: Benefits Office), 1140 W. Mission Rd., San Marcos, CA 92069
  3. Fax: (760) 761-3530
  • If you have lost or misplaced your physical vaccination card, please visit Digital COVID-19 Vaccine Record (ca.gov)  to obtain a replacement digital copy of your vaccination card for submission. You may also call the site you received your vaccination to request an additional physical vaccination card.

 

Palomar College Aligns Guidance with Cal/OSHA

Unless otherwise stipulated below, in order to comply with Cal/OSHA regulations, effective immediately through August 16, 2021, or until further CalOSHA Guidance, the following are required for essential employees who are approved to work on campus:

For Fully Vaccinated Employees

By definition, an individual is considered fully vaccinated for COVID-19, after two weeks or more have passed since receiving their second dose in a 2-dose series of the Pfizer-BioNTech or Moderna vaccines, or two weeks or more after they have received a single-dose of the Johnson and Johnson (J&J/Janssen) vaccine.

  1. Please send your proof of vaccination to benefits@palomar.edu if you haven’t already done so. You will receive a confirmation email from Human Resources once received.
  2. Once you have sent your proof of vaccination to Human Resources, you do not need to wear a mask/facial covering on campus but may wish to do so in large group settings etc.

For Unvaccinated or Not Fully Vaccinated Employees

You must wear a mask/facial covering indoors unless:

  • You are alone in a room or vehicle,
  • You are eating or drinking,
  • You have an approved accommodation from Human Resources,
  • Your job duties make a face covering unfeasible or creates a workplace hazard.

If not fully vaccinated, you are not required to wear a mask outside and maintain physical distance, but may wish to do so.

To read the memo in its entirety, employees can do so at this link.

Vaccination Opportunity on June 19 at the Main Campus in San Marcos

Great news!  Our partner, Neighborhood Healthcare, will host a vaccination event in the Dome at the main campus in San Marcos on Saturday, June 19, from 8:00 a.m. to 11:45 a.m.  You must use the MyTurn link and follow the directions stated below.  This vaccination event is open to all Palomar College employees and students, and the general public who are 12 years and older.  Stay well!

  1. Go to https://myturn.ca.gov/
  2. Complete the basic information requested and use one of the following zip codes to locate this event:  92024. 92029, 92069, 92078, 92079 or 92096
  3. Select your vaccine and schedule your appointment – Neighborhood Healthcare will distribute the Pfizer and Johnson & Johnson vaccines.

 

Palomar College Return to Campus Plan Update

Status as of June 15

  • As of June 15, the stay-at-home order in California ends and new guidelines on physical distancing, facial coverings, and capacity limitations for businesses begin.
  • On June 17, Cal-OSHA is scheduled to approve guidance for employers.  Once this guidance is published, the College will issue an update to employees and students.
  • On July 6, the Governing Board will conduct a second reading of recommended revisions to BP/AP 5210 Communicable Disease (students) and BP/AP 7330 Communicable Disease (employees) to give the District the ability to create a Vaccination and Immunization Plan in the event of an epidemic or pandemic.
  • The collective bargaining negotiation process to discuss the impacts of BP/AP 5210 and BP/AP 7330 on working conditions, including legal exemptions from a vaccine mandate, are underway.
  • Our facilities department partnered with an engineering firm to do an analysis of air quality and HVAC systems in all campus and education center buildings. All required repairs and upgrades will be complete by the end of summer.
  • Every department was asked to submit Summer 2021 and/or Fall 2021 Return to Work plans to our Emergency Operations Center.
  • On June 4, the Emergency Operations Center and Policy Team reviewed and finalized all of the plans received to date.
  • Our technology team is installing required audio visual equipment in conference rooms and in some classrooms for continued ZOOM usage.
  • We will continue to ensure access to vaccines for students and employees.
  • We will determine the most efficient and effective approach to COVID-19 testing on campus.
  • We are in the process of determining the most efficient and effective approach to collecting the appropriate data on vaccinations while abiding by HIPAA requirements.
  • We will modify the campus Return to Campus plan as relevant guidance is gained from federal, state and regional public health agencies.

Please visit this page frequently as updates to our plan are made available regularly.

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