Wed. May 29th, 2024

Columbia says classes will be hybrid until semester ends amid protests

Tyler Mitchell By Tyler Mitchell May28,2024

Columbia University’s main campus will shift to hybrid learning for the reminder of the semester amid ongoing pro-Palestinian protests, the school announced Monday.

“Safety is our highest priority as we strive to support our students’ learning and all the required academic operations,” school Provost Angela V. Olinto and Chief Operating Officer Cas Holloway said in a statement.

All classes, except arts- or practice-based programs, will remain hybrid — technology permitting — until the end of the spring semester.

Faculty holding classes for which hybrid learning is not an option were asked to hold classes remotely or “provide other accommodations liberally to students who have requested support for virtual learning this week.”

Columbia already moved Monday’s classes online following days of protests on the school’s campus. Demonstrators are calling for a cease-fire in the Israel-Hamas war in Gaza, along with a halt in U.S. military aid to Israel, and they set up an encampment last week at the center of campus in protest.

Columbia administrators, led by university President Minouche Shafik, authorized New York police last week to arrest students involved with the protests, prompting further tensions on campus. More than 100 students were arrested, including the daughter of Rep. Ilhan Omar (D-Minn.).

While most of the protests were reported to be peaceful, concerns were raised over the safety of students and proliferation of antisemitic rhetoric. Some protest groups have rejected the characterizations of their demonstrations as antisemitic, pointing to the significant portion of demonstrators who are Jewish.

Concerns were further driven by a reported call from one campus rabbi for Jewish students to return home “as soon as possible,” citing safety concerns ahead of the start of the Jewish holiday of Passover.

The campus Hillel director issued a statement asking the school and city to do more to protect Jewish students, but did not call for students to return home.

Tensions have roiled other college campuses, including New York University, where the NYPD moved into a crowd of protestors and took multiple people into custody on Monday night.

Earlier on Monday, police arrested dozens of protestors at Yale University after an encampment swelled to several hundred people calling for the school to divest from military weapons manufacturers.

Tyler Mitchell

By Tyler Mitchell

Tyler is a renowned journalist with years of experience covering a wide range of topics including politics, entertainment, and technology. His insightful analysis and compelling storytelling have made him a trusted source for breaking news and expert commentary.

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2 thoughts on “Columbia says classes will be hybrid until semester ends amid protests”
  1. It’s important to prioritize safety and support virtual learning accommodations for students during these protests. Hopefully, the hybrid classes will allow for academic continuity at Columbia University.

  2. It’s crucial that universities prioritize the safety of their students amidst such challenging times. Hopefully, the hybrid learning approach will allow for both education and safety to be maintained effectively.

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