Committee begins preparing schedule for next school year

Two years ago, students and professors had 10 minutes to go from classroom to classroom. This year, to decrease the number of students passing each other in hallways and give professors time to set up technology in classrooms, the time between classes was extended to 20 minutes.

Next year, with vaccinations being distributed and more knowledge about how COVID-19 spreads, campus decision makers have determined that there will be 15 minutes between classes.

“This [time] has decreased to fifteen minutes for fall 2021 because the disinfectant will no longer be required,” said Joni Krueger, registrar and associate dean for interdisciplinary programs. “We do, however, feel it is still necessary to have those extra five minutes.”

These changes have been decided by a task force that has gathered information from this year and is using it to better plan for the time ahead. According to Augustana Student Association (ASA) President Cole Tessendorf, the committee had to not only look at how class times impact student schedules but also dedicated chapel time, athletic and musical practices and faculty work hours.

“For faculty, everything should be finished by 3 p.m.,” Tessendorf said. “Everything, meaning class work, because 3 to 5 p.m. is when faculty typically have their meetings and student athletic programs can be in between that time.”

 In past years, the chapel held dedicated gatherings and services for students Monday, Wednesday and Friday at 10 a.m. This year, however, the chapel has shifted to the same time on Tuesday and Thursday, except that these times are not completely dedicated to worship. Some labs and classes were scheduled for the same times, which meant that some students were not able to attend.

“Because of modified class schedules, there isn’t any dedicated time,” said The Rev. Ann Rosendale, Augustana’s campus pastor. “In a typical year that thirty minute time is dedicated to chapel. There are no classes. People are encouraged to not home [meetings], and this year because of some modifications and how class schedules worked out, there are labs and classes that lap over.” 

This overlap of time has created a challenge to attend chapel for students and faculty. Rosendale has found a way around it by live streaming worship for those who cannot attend but would still enjoy watching.

Tessendorf said he hopes “to find at least one common time for everyone for community events.” He encourages students with specific concerns or thoughts about schedules to share with the committee, which can be done by emailing Joni Krueger at

“The ultimate goal we are working towards is to provide the best possible experience for our students, faculty and staff while also keeping everyone safe as possible,” Krueger said. “We need to continue to ask for patience as the situation is evolving and changing on a very rapid basis. We are hoping fall 2021 will be a semester filled with celebrating, learning, interacting and returning to a new normal.”

The task force committee will be gathering May 17 to plan and find more options for the 2021-2022 school year.

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