COVID-19 mandate discussed in college board meeting

The+board+of+trustee+members%2C+who+are+seated+at+the+U-shaped+table%2C+had+a+meeting+on+July+20+that+lasted+around+three+hours+where+they+talked+about+a+variety+of+topics+but+COVID-19+in+particular.+

Samuel Chacko

The board of trustee members, who are seated at the U-shaped table, had a meeting on July 20 that lasted around three hours where they talked about a variety of topics but COVID-19 in particular.

Samuel Chacko, Editor in Chief

The COVID-19 mandates, particularly in Cerritos Colleges’ restrictions, were talked about during the second board of trustee meeting on July 20 at 7 p.m.

The board meeting began with several public comments, particularly aimed at Cerritos College’s COVID-19 mandates, which were read out during the board of trustee meeting.

The first public comment came from Maria who said that the board should consider lifting the vaccine mandate and testing requirements for students (and faculty).

“As we can see, everyone on this campus can get and spread the virus no matter what their vaccination status is,” Maria says, “It appears that the district is intentionally targeting individuals who have a medical or religious exemption.”

Maria talks about how some LA county colleges remove or suspend their testing/vaccine policy and how we should either do weekly testing for everyone on campus or have no weekly testing.

Tessa Troglia, the women’s soccer head coach, talked about the negative impacts she saw on students because of the COVID-19 mandates.

“Now more than ever, we have witnessed the decline of mental health, self-esteem and confidence,” Troglia said, “I often repeated that, ‘what makes one person happy does not have to make sense to others.’ ”

The women’s soccer head coach ended her comment by asking the board to, “please remove the mandates.”

There was also a discussion regarding Board Policy (BP) 2905, SARS CoV-2 (COVID-19) Vaccination and Testing Requirement.

Trustee Lewis, who requested to discuss BP 2905, talked about the comments he heard from other students and faculty while asking board members to, “revisit conditions of employment for faculty and for some cases students.”

Near the end of his remarks, Trustee Lewis also asked the board members to consider creating leniency or eradicating BP 2905.

Dr. Fierro brought up how other colleges close to Cerritos handle their policies while also bringing up how Cerritos College can be losing athletes due to the vaccine policy and the decrease in enrollment.

The president of Cerritos College also talked about how on July 29, Cerritos College will be going back to the masking order, which was not a Cerritos College mandate but rather a public health order.

This mask mandate will begin on the 29th and will be required for at least two weeks, Dr. Fierro said.

This mandate Dr. Fierro talked about is based on the positivity rate and the level of risk we’re currently in (which we’re at a high level).

There was some more discussion among board members regarding BP 2905 and there will be a larger discussion around the policy in the next board meeting where faculty and student survey data will be brought up.

It is up in the air whether masking will come back (or be optional) in the Fall semester, based on what Dr. Fierro pointed out in the board meeting, but there will be a larger discussion revolving around COVID-19 in the next board of trustee meeting.