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Lamar State College Port Arthur outlines fall plan with changes to mask, vaccination & social distancing

After more than a year of social distancing, hand sanitizing and face masks in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic, Lamar State College Port Arthur is moving back to a state of normalcy as the Fall 2021 semester nears.

LSCPA will return to face-to-face classes in the fall semester, following the direction of other Texas State University System schools across the state that are doing the same.

“It feels like the pandemic has gone on forever, but we’re finally seeing the light at the end of this very dark tunnel,” college President Dr. Betty Reynard said. “We have carefully followed the CDC guidelines through this entire situation and now we feel it is safe to move to a more normal delivery of classes on campus.”

Earlier this month, Reynard was a featured speaker at the Port Arthur Education Foundation Pathways to Success Luncheon at the Carl A. Parker Multipurpose Center.

She noted self reporting by students and faculty usually resulted in 2 to 3 COVID cases a week for the college; however, that trend has dropped to none in recent weeks, she said in early May.

“I am hoping that trend continues for a long time,” Reynard said. “I am ready to come back to the school in the fall. That is our hope. We still have online classes scheduled this summer. We are hoping between all of the safety protocols that we are taking and the vaccines that everybody is taking that we will be prepared to open and have a typical academic year beginning in the fall.”

A recent executive order by Texas Gov. Greg Abbott established that most state agencies, including institutions of higher education, may no longer require face coverings.

Students attending face-to-face classes still have the choice to wear a mask if they so choose.

Lamar State is scheduling a COVID-19 Vaccination Clinic in June, hosted by the Port Arthur Health Department. This will allow students, faculty and staff to quickly and easily receive the COVID-19 vaccination.

The inoculations are being administered free of charge.

Reynard said the vaccination is not required to attend face-to-face classes, but “we wanted to make every effort to provide this opportunity for those who have not had a chance to receive the vaccination.”

Once the fall semester begins, social distancing will no longer be required on campus. This will allow for once-regular campus events and classroom instruction to take place as they have in the past.

While face-to-face offerings will ramp back up for the Fall 2021 semester, LSCPA also offers a wide variety of online classes.

“Whether a student takes classes on campus in a classroom or on a computer at home, they will receive one of the best educational opportunities in the state of Texas,” Reynard said. “Our dedication to students and their success, especially through this pandemic, has never wavered.”

Registration is underway for Summer and Fall semesters.

Enrollment counselors are available at 409-984-6467 or at enrollmentservices@lamarpa.edu.