Dear Members of the SFTS Community,
In Butte County, the Camp Fire that started Nov. 8, has burned 140,000 acres, killed 56 people and destroyed 8,650 homes as of this morning, according to the California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection. As of this morning, the fire is only 40 percent contained. The Camp Fire is now considered to be the deadliest and most destructive wildfire in California history. The Woolsey Fire in Los Angeles and Ventura counties is causing similar devastation. We are holding in prayer all those impacted by the enormous devastation of these fires.
As we are also well aware, the air quality in our region has been adversely impacted. The Air Quality Index for our area (San Rafael) was reported to be 171, in the Unhealthy range, which means that everyone may begin to experience some adverse health effects, and members of the sensitive groups may experience more serious effects. The health and safety of our students is our highest priority and to that end, we are cancelling classes today and tomorrow, November 15 and 16, beginning now.
Due to the air quality, SFTS will close operations through the weekend, except for essential services. SFTS faculty should consult with Dean Childers if they have any questions. SFTS staff should consult with their supervisors regarding their work schedule in order to determine what constitutes essential services in their area of work.
All campus events through the weekend are cancelled as well.
No determination has been made about classes or campus operations for this coming Monday and beyond. We will continue to monitor the situation and post updates on the SFTS website.
Grace and peace,
Rev. Dr. James L. McDonald
President and Professor of Faith and Public Life