12/31/21 - Remote Spring '22 Start


Dear Students, Staff, and Faculty (Full-time and Adjunct),

I hope you are having a restful and safe winter break. Although we had hoped to resume HyFlex operations on January 10, in light of the increasing number of COVID-19 cases in Los Angeles and the uncertainty caused by the Omicron variant, Southwestern Law School will start the Spring 2022 semester remotely. Although we are still working on some details, specifics confirmed to date appear below. We will continue to share updates as they become available.

  • Remote operations: Spring 2022 classes and operations will begin remotely on January 10.
  • SCALE I: The remainder of SCALE I Period 3 will be entirely remote.
  • Return to campus: At this point, we plan to resume on-campus (HyFlex) instruction and operations on Monday, January 31.
  • Staff: Except for essential staff, all other staff will work remotely until January 31. If you are not essential staff but would like to continue working from campus, please email covidmanager@swlaw.edu with a proposed schedule. In some instances, non-essential staff may be asked to report to campus for specific tasks and purposes. Employees who need to retrieve mail may visit the Print Shop for that purpose.
  • Semester-long remote option: Students and faculty who have been approved for a semester-long remote option will continue to learn and teach remotely through the end of the semester. The Spring 2022 modality switch application is located at https://southwesternlawschooladmissions.formstack.com/forms/spring22switch. Staff with special circumstances should reach out to HR.
  • Externships: Externships will proceed without any changes, subject to the Externship Agreement (Remote Work and COVID-19 Safety provisions).
  • Clinics: Clinics will proceed without any changes unless your professor indicates otherwise. Please contact your professor directly if you have any questions.
  • Midterms and finals: Midterms and final examinations will be administered remotely. As with fall finals, we expect to have limited seats on campus for those with specific needs and special circumstances.
  • Booster shot deadline extended: The deadline to submit proof of having received a COVID-19 booster shot is now January 18. (See my December 16 email with the subject line “ACTION REQUIRED OVER WINTER BREAK: COVID Booster Shot Requirement.”)
  • Mandatory testing for all who plan to access campus starting January 31 has shifted from January 4-5 to January 25-26: Mandatory testing for those who plan to access campus starting January 31, regardless of vaccination status, will now likely occur on campus from noon-6 p.m. on January 25 and 26 (we anticipate that Nobility will confirm these new dates today, and we will send new Outlook invites with instructions on January 3 or 4). You must test with Nobility Health (either on campus or off campus) on one of these days. Testing will be administered on a walk-up basis with no appointment necessary. No testing will occur on January 4 and 5; if you accepted the Outlook invite for one of those dates, please remove it from your calendar. If you have tested positive for COVID within the past 90 days, please write covidmanager@swlaw.edu for additional instructions. Also, write covidmanager@swlaw.edu if you know that you will not be able to test on January 25 or 26; do not access campus until you have received instructions from the COVID Compliance Manager's Office.
  • Twice weekly testing for unvaccinated individuals and individuals without proof of having received a booster shot: Mandatory testing for individuals who must test twice per week with Nobility Health (unvaccinated with an approved Southwestern exemption and those who have not received or submitted proof of having received a COVID-19 booster shot by January 18) will resume on January 25. These individuals must test on January 25 and again on January 28 to access campus as of January 31.
  • Library operations: The Library will resume in-person operations on January 10. We will announce specific hours in the coming days. In addition to continuing to require masks indoors, we will also reimplement social-distancing requirements (one person per study room and per table) in the Library. We encourage those who are coming to campus before January 31 to test regularly on their own (e.g., rapid test at home or testing through Nobility or another provider) to help reduce spread. As noted above, on-campus testing will not resume until January 25.
  • Westmoreland building: During the remote period, Westmoreland will be closed to students, other than those working in clinics. Students who wish to study on campus should do so in the Library.
  • Bookstore: The Bookstore will be open for curbside pickup starting on Tuesday, January 4; you may also purchase online. The Print Shop will also be open for curbside pickup starting January 4.
  • Fitness Center and Tea Room: The Fitness Center and Tea Room will be closed until January 31.
  • The Residences: The Residences remain open, but we encourage residents to limit guests and time in common areas. 
  • Spring 2022 FAQs: We plan to distribute new FAQs as quickly as possible but are waiting on important updates from L.A. County.
  • Town Hall in January: We will schedule a town hall, ideally the week of January 10, to discuss various matters related to the Spring 2022 semester.
  • Parking: Students with a current parking permit will automatically receive a prorated refund for January. Refunds will be processed using the same method of purchase (via financial aid or credit card). The refund periods are: (1) for Day and Evening permits, January 10-28, (2) SCALE I Period 3, November 22-February 25, and (3) SCALE II Period 7, January 4-28. SCALE I students who previously received refund rates for November 22-December 17 will receive the additional refund amount. Please allow up to 10 business days after the start of the semester to receive the refund. Students who plan to use the Library during the remote period will receive complimentary parking access. Please email parking@swlaw.edu for any parking questions.
  • Lockers: Students who need locker access during the remote period should email covidmanager@swlaw.edu to coordinate a date and time.

Thank you for your continuing cooperation. I'm looking forward to 2022 and wish you all the very best.

Dean D.