DALLAS (CBSDFW.COM) – With its 140,000 students already living at home — Dallas County Community College leaders decide the safest path is to have them continue to learn there, as well.

The announcement came Thursday that the majority of classes this fall will be taught online.

DCCCD Chancellor Dr. Joe May spoke to CBS 11 News about the factors influencing the decision.

“It really was looking at the educational needs of students; but, putting first the health and safety needs,” says Dr. May. “Where we can, we will add additional space, where we can’t, we will reduce the number of students to insure that each classroom is safe and student are an appropriate distance apart.”​

According to Dr. May, the goal is to move as many classes as possible online, to create the additional space needed to safely teach those on campus that don’t have that option — such as those with clinicals and labs, tech classes and automotive, among others.

A poll of local universities finds the University of North Texas working to begin limited in-person teaching as early as the second summer session.

Both Southern Methodist University and Texas and Texas Christian University will join them in resuming on-campus instruction in the fall. Residential dormitories will reopen as well.​

“We know if students can’t come to us, that deprives or delays opportunities to get better jobs and provide for themselves and their families,” says Dr. May who adds that students can trust that community college leaders will do everything possible to allow students to safely return to class, and then finish those classes.​