Student Return to Campus Guidelines


Learn Safe in Fall 2021 with Maricopa Community Colleges

We’re focused on keeping you safe and healthy so you can meet your college and career goals. This page provides important links and information for reporting COVID-19 symptoms, cases, and potential exposure. Planning on returning to campus or the workplace? Review important guidelines here to know what to expect and be prepared upon returning. Need access to campus facilities? We've got your covered with detailed information about remote access to facilities at your college campus.

Maricopa Community Colleges is open and we’re ready to serve you! Your safety is important to us and we've put several measures in place to keep you learning safely. Get information about the safe learning formats your college is offering and how the colleges are providing essential services and centers at this time.



How Maricopa Is Keeping You Safe

In reopening our colleges, the health of our students, faculty, and staff is our number one priority. To ensure the health and safety of our students, we have developed and implemented the following:

Learning Formats, Services, and Centers

  • Offering multiple learning formats to accommodate your needs (in-person, online, hybrid)
  • Providing remote or online options for most services and centers 
  • Limiting in-person classes and services

Physical Distancing Standards

  • Marking off the 3-foot spacing with carpet or tape
  • Designating hallways and stairways as one-way
  • Limiting capacity in classrooms, other learning spaces, conference rooms, and elevators

Additional Standards and Expectations

  • Following the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and State and local Public Health Guidelines, and the Maricopa County Board of Regulations, face coverings are required on all Maricopa Community Colleges properties
  • Increasing cleaning and disinfecting
  • Reiterating the importance of frequent hand washing
  • Encouraging minimal face touching
  • Advising students, staff, and faculty to stay home when sick
  • Some of the colleges will have mandatory temperature stations for students, faculty and staff prior to entry into one or more of the campus facilities

Please refer to your individual class schedule for the start date of all of your classes. Please see the 2021-2022 academic calendar.



Our Responsibility

Your college has established cleaning and disinfecting practices based on CDC guidelines. Students and faculty should also wipe down commonly used surfaces before and after use to guard against COVID-19. This includes any shared-space location (labs) or equipment.

Please share your questions or concerns about the specific cleaning process and schedule for your location/classroom with your instructor who can refer or inquire, as necessary.



Your Responsibility

The most important thing you can do to keep yourself and others safe from COVID-19 is wear a mask. Face coverings are required inside on all Maricopa Community Colleges properties, per the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), Arizona Department of Health Services, and the Maricopa Board of Regulations.

Acceptable Face Coverings:

  • Cloth Masks
  • Medical Masks
  • Scarves
  • Bandanas

Unacceptable Face Coverings:

  • Masks that don’t cover the nose or mouth
  • Clothing (e.g., using the front of your shirt to cover your nose and mouth)
  • Masks that are not hands-free and need to be supported by your hands and mouth

We recommend reviewing the available services and buildings at your college prior to going there.



Students and Faculty Exhibiting Symptoms

Maricopa faculty and staff are required to self-quarantine for 14 days if they are exhibiting symptoms of COVID-19.

If you tested positive for COVID-19 after starting your in-person classes, Maricopa does not require a negative test or a doctor’s release note once you are clear from the virus.

However, we recommend that you only return to campus after going 24 hours without fever (without the use of fever reducing medications), your respiratory symptoms have improved, and it’s been at least 10 days since your symptoms first appeared.

Your instructor may ask if any students in the class are experiencing symptoms of the pandemic virus, such as fever, chills, cough, shortness of breath, or sore throat.

Maricopa Community Colleges relies on the CDC, other public health authorities, and reputable medical sources for guidance on emerging symptoms associated with the disease. This may include questions about if you have recently had close contact with someone who has tested positive or who is exhibiting symptoms of being ill with COVID-19.

Students, faculty and staff may use digital thermometers to determine body temperature/fever. Some colleges will have temperature stations installed for your use. Please contact your college to determine if they will have on-site temperature stations.



Living with Someone with COVID

You should complete the online reporting form if you disclose to a faculty member that you live with someone who has COVID-19. After completing the form you will be contacted by a staff member for further steps. Do not return to class until you have completed the process. Students should anticipate that even after they have recovered from COVID-19, if someone in their home or close, daily proximity shows signs and/or has Covid, the student will need to remain home for the duration of time the person with whom they have contact continues to show symptoms and/or tests positive.

Faculty and staff want to be able to provide the safest and healthiest learning environment for all students. Faculty will work with students to provide online support and materials for the length of the quarantine or within a reasonable amount of time due to illness (to be determined on a case by case basis).

If a student becomes so ill so that completing the course before the end of the term is not possible, the faculty member will:

  1. reasonably work with student
  2. consider an extension of the course within an short timeframe
  3. consider a complete withdraw from the course
  4. consider an incomplete

Extensions and incompletes are at the discretion of each faculty member and will be determined on a case by case basis.

Students who choose to withdraw from their in-person class as a result of Covid-related concerns or issues should review the withdrawal policy and consider speaking with someone in enrollment services to understand the impact on Satisfactory Academic Progress (SAP) and future Financial Aid eligibility.

Maricopa Community Colleges may store your medical information related to COVID-19. This includes your statement that you may have the illness, suspect that you have the illness, or any other notes or documentation from questioning screenings.



Students with Disabilities

Student disability accommodations will be handled by the campus DRS office on a case-by-case basis to ensure that your needs are effectively being met. You may contact your college DRS office with your questions about accommodations.



Possible Exposure to COVID-19

Your college will be advised and will perform tracking procedures. The student or faculty member who has been exposed to COVID-19 will be sent home. All students and employees who may have been exposed to COVID-19 will be sent home. The area/classroom exposed to COVID-19 will be deep cleaned by facilities.

Once the possibly infected student has completed the online reporting form, as necessary, the Maricopa District Office will notify students and faculty members about potential risks of infection. If there are risks, students, faculty and staff will be notified by the District Risk Management office regarding the continuation of a safe and healthy learning environment.

Even if you don't have any symptoms, students, faculty, and staff are asked to self-quarantine at home for 14 days after the exposure or the return from travel. Non-essential and international travel is still strongly advised against by the CDC.

Because the CDC and other public health entities have stated that the incubation period can range from two to 14 days, if you test too early you may get a false negative. If you feel healthy but have recently been in contact with a person with COVID-19, you should:

  • Stay home until 14 days after your last exposure
  • Check your temperature twice a day and check for symptoms of COVID-19

If possible, stay away from people who are at a higher-risk for contracting COVID-19. You may need to contact your medical provider to discuss re-testing, at least 24 hours apart is recommended to reduce the amount of time necessary for quarantine. If you cannot stay away from someone who is experiencing symptoms, you may not return to campus until both you and the affected person show no signs of COVID-19 and a 14-day quarantine period has occurred.