Highline College

Wednesday, June 03, 2020

Highline awaits governor’s next orders

Dr. John Mosby

Izzy Anderson Staff Reporter April 30

What Highline will look like going forward is largely based on what Gov. Jay Inslee says this Monday, said Highline President Dr. John Mosby.

May 4 is when the “Stay Home, Stay Healthy” order that Gov. Inslee put in place is set to end.

The order was originally set until April 6, but was then extended.

However, Gov. Inslee has since said that many restrictions around Washington will remain in place after the date passes.

The transition to keep these restrictions in place for Highline has been a difficult one, Dr. Mosby said.

“It has obviously been a very challenging time for the entire world, and Highline College has definitely been in the middle of that,” he said.

Going online with classes has been a particular struggle.

“It's going to be difficult until we come up for air, and are allowed to transition back on to campus,” Dr. Mosby said.

But until then, nothing is set in stone when it comes to returning to campus, Dr. Mosby said.

“We are waiting to hear and get guidance from the government on what happens after May 4. … If we are returning to campus in some shape or fashion, we will be communicating that,” he said. “If Gov. Inslee extends that date ... then we will continue business as usual.”

Hearing what the state has to say is a must for figuring out the Highline’s next fiscal year too.

“There are a lot of unknowns that we do not know just yet,” said Michael Pham, vice president of administrative services. “We are focusing on trying to complete the current fiscal year right now.”

“Our goal is to do the best we can to continue and move forward,” Dr. Mosby said.

Gov. Inslee’s decisions will have an effect on how phasing back on to campus looks as well, said Francesca Fender, associate director of public safety and emergency management.

“We are looking forward to reopening services, but it’s obviously not going to be all at once,” she said. “It all depends on what the governor does with his proclamation.

“In the meantime, we are creating a very slow, very cautioned phased approach to returning services back to campus,” Fender said.

As a whole, the Highline community is trying its best to follow Gov. Inslee’s orders and take on each problem presented, Dr. Mosby said.

“This has been a very challenging time, and it required us to look at things differently and to do things differently,” he said. “It has been a quarter of change.”