Find answers to commonly asked questions about COVID and its impact across the Los Rios campuses.
FAQ: Vaccine Requirements
No; there is currently no vaccine requirement. The previous vaccine requirement has been lifted for all Los Rios students and employees as of Monday, November 14.
Public health remains a top priority for Los Rios and our colleges. Consistent with guidance from local public health experts, we continue to strongly recommend wearing masks and appropriate face coverings when indoors. We also strongly recommend that everyone eligible continue to stay up-to-date on their COVID-19 vaccine and booster regimens.
Visit the Sacramento County vaccine website to learn about local vaccine availability. This website is updated frequently with information about eligibility and vaccine sites in your area, including how to access vaccines via healthcare providers.
You can also visit the State of California's MyTurn website if you do not live in Sacramento County or you want more information about eligibility.
Students may withdraw from a class up to the 'W' notation deadline advertised on the academic calendar page and receive a 'W' in the course. Students may petition for an Excused Withdrawal (EW) by submitting a Late Drop Petition Form through eServices along with verification of the illness.
How to access the Late Drop Petition Form:
- Log in to eServices
- Click on the Other Resources tile
- Click on eForms
- Select Late Drop Petition Form
Students may petition for a 'Leave of Absence' for medical reasons. A 'Leave of Absence' is different from withdrawing from classes, but will preserve catalog rights for students who are expected to be unable to attend for a longer period than one semester. To request a 'Leave of Absence', students must file a Student Petition form at their college:
Verification of the illness or medical need must be submitted with the petition. Completed documents should be emailed to the college Admissions and Records office.
Continuing international students who were enrolled in a course of study in the US at the college on or before March 9, 2020, and who left the US and are currently attending online classes to maintain their F-1 status from abroad will not be required to provide proof of vaccination to continue attending online classes.
International students attending in-person classes will need to provide proof of vaccination the same as any other student to remain compliant with our Code of Conduct. USCIS requires international students who entered the US on an initial I-20 to the college after March 9, 2020 to maintain at least one in-person class each semester to maintain the F-1 visa status.
All new initial or transfer students who wish to enroll in classes are required to provide proof of full COVID-19 vaccination with a vaccine that is on the World Health Organization's approved list. All non-English documents must be translated into English when submitted to the International Student Office or uploaded to the student's eServices account as vaccine verification.
Translators with knowledge of educational records and terminology should be used. Resources include the American Translators Association and the Northern California Translators Association.
Masks are strongly recommended for all students, employees, and visitors in any indoor space at American River College, regardless of vaccination status. For outdoor activities, masks are always permissible and anyone who feels safer or more comfortable wearing a face-covering outdoors is encouraged to do so.
We expect that employees and students will continue to wear masks in the following situations:
- Individuals who are symptomatic and on campus to pick up a free COVID test should continue to wear a mask.
- Individuals who were recently exposed to a positive COVID case should continue to wear a mask for 10 days, even if they have been cleared to return early (prior to 10 days after exposure) based either on vaccine/booster status or by testing negative at day 5 or later.
- Individuals who have tested positive for COVID and who have returned early (prior to 10 days) based on receiving a negative COVID test on or after day 5 should continue to wear a mask through day 10.
A limited supply of masks will be provided in classrooms and at student support counters/locations for students who need masks.
If you choose to wear a mask, then we strongly recommend wearing surgical masks or higher-level respirator N95 or KN95 masks instead of cloth masks or other face-coverings that provide less protection. Read the California Department of Public Health's latest guidance on masks and face coverings.
Scarfs, ski masks, balaclavas, bandanas, turtlenecks, collars, or single layers of fabric are not acceptable face coverings, as they do not provide adequate protection from the COVID-19 virus. Additionally, face shields should not be used in lieu of masks.
FAQ: Classes and Services
American River College is offering a variety of in-person classes and we look forward to adding more in-person classes as public health conditions continue to improve.
Visit the class schedules page and filter by "Mode: In Person" to see classes that are offered in a face-to-face setting.
We are offering many student services at least partially in-person. Implementation of these critical services for students will vary college-by-college based on student demand and unique staffing dynamics.
For the most up-to-date information, visit the college library website:
FAQ: Health, Safety, and Testing
Free antigen at-home tests are available to students and employees.
Locations and Hours
- American River College Health and Wellness Center, Monday through Thursday from 8:30 am to 4:00 pm
- Cosumnes River College Health and Wellness Center, Monday through Thursday from 9:00 am to 4:00 pm
- Folsom Lake College:
- Students: Folsom Lake College Welcome and Student Success Center, Monday through Thursday from 8:30 am to 4:00 pm
- Employees: Folsom Lake College Campus Operations, Monday through Thursday from 8:30 am to 4:00 pm
- Sacramento City College Health and Wellness Center, Monday through Thursday from 9:00 am to 3:00 pm
At-home tests are also available through healthcare providers and local pharmacies. Most healthcare providers will reimburse patients for tests purchased at pharmacies.
If you test positive for COVID-19 or are exposed to someone who has tested positive for COVID-19, then do not come to campus. Use our interactive decision chart to find out what next steps you should take.
FAQ: Facilities and Sanitation
Yes, please read the Sanitizing and Disinfecting Schedule and Guidance During COVID-19.
COVID mitigation measures to prepare our facilities primarily involve building ventilation and air filtration systems, but Facilities Management (FM) would also do a full HVAC system functions test and inspection for each building prior to occupancy.
Before the pandemic, we already regularly performed these system checks throughout the year, typically coinciding with filter replacements (every four months). Now, we will perform additional checks before reopening facilities. These checks help ensure systems are performing the necessary CDC/ASHRAE recommended air exchanges and sufficient outside fresh air is being pulled into the buildings.
Before reopening a facility, we will also verify that we can remotely communicate with the building's HVAC controls through the District's Energy Management System (EMS).
Read Making Our Buildings Resilient During COVID-19 to learn more.
We use the CDC-recommended American Society of Heating, Refrigeration and Air-Conditioning Engineers (ASHRAE) standards. Read Making Our Buildings Resilient During COVID-19 to learn more.
All buildings that are currently occupied have MERV-13 filters, the industry standard for COVID-19 mitigation. MERV-13 filters are recommended because they can trap smaller particles, including viruses, and are equivalent to N95 masks with regards to protection and air quality.
In the event a building's HVAC system cannot accommodate the MERV-13 filters, we are performing additional building "flushing" two hours prior and two hours after occupancy as recommended by CDC/ASHRAE for these situations. As more buildings open to accommodate more people coming to campus, we will perform HVAC system checks and filter changes prior to occupancy.
Resources and Related Links
- California Department of Industrial Relations: Cal/OSHA Emergency Regulations to Protect Workers from COVID-19
- California Department of Industrial Relations: COVID-19 Emergency Temporary Standards FAQ
- California Department of Public Health: Blueprint for a Safer Economy
- Governor Newsom Unveils California's Safe Schools for All Plan
- APLU Council on Research Webinar: Ramp-up and Recovery due to COVID-19
- California Department of Public Health: COVID-19 Guidance for Institutions of Higher Education
- CCCCO's Report of the Safe Campus Reopening Workgroup
- COVID-19 and the Racial Equity Implications of Reopening College and University Campuses by Shaun R. Harper
- Phillips Community College COVID-19 Reopening Plan