Responding to COVID-19
We are committed to ensuring that the health, safety, and well-being of our entire community are at the heart of our campus life. We will continue to review and refine our plans as we work to provide a safe and engaging learning experience that serves the needs of all our students.
Keeping St. Patrick's Safe
This Fall 2021 School Opening Plan largely spells out the steps the Day School has taken, or will take, to promote the health and safety of our students, faculty and staff, and wider community during the coronavirus pandemic.
An overview of key procedures, protocols, and arrangements can be found below.
- Community-Wide Expectations to Keep St. Patrick's Safe
- COVID-19 Symptoms
- COVID-19 Basics
- Health and Safety
- Potential and Positive Cases of COVID-19
- Physical Education & Athletics
- After-School Activities
- Extended Day
- Lunch Program
This Fall 2021 School Opening Plan has, at its foundation, current District of Columbia-based public-health guidance along with the set of policies and protocols that enabled St. Patrick’s Episcopal Day School to remain open for on-campus teaching and learning, safely and effectively, throughout the 2020-2021 school year. We opened on-campus initially for our early childhood students—in the Infant-Toddler Center, Nursery School, and Kindergarten—on September 8, 2020, and then gradually added grade levels later in September and into October. Concurrently, we offered St. Patrick’s Anywhere, Our Continuous Learning Plan, for students who did not participate in on-campus teaching and learning and for all students on all-remote Wednesdays. During the fall and winter, we had approximately 85% of our students attending on-campus classes, a number that grew to about 97% in the Spring Trimester.
Our plan for the 2021-2022 school year calls for all students to attend classes on-campus and in-person, five days a week, at all grade levels. We will make St. Patrick’s Anywhere available only for students who have documented underlying medical conditions that make on-campus participation problematic, but we expect those instances to be rare. Our remote-learning program will also be available for students in instructional cohorts that are in quarantine as a result of exposure to COVID-19 and in certain other, rare instances, not including periods of travel or extended seasonal or other leave, including any quarantines resulting from that travel.
The pandemic environment remains a fluid one, particularly now, with the surge of the Delta variant—and one in which certainties have proven to be elusive and that demands that we approach it with humility. As a result, we will remain attentive to changes in that environment and the emerging public-health guidance that will come with any such changes. Internally, ongoing planning and decision-making will reside with the following groups:
The Senior Administrative Team (Head of School, Associate Head of School, and Assistant Heads of School for Development; Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion; and Finance and Operations), Division Heads, and Assistant Division Heads
The Board of Trustees Pandemic-Response Task Force and its Medical Advisory Team
The St. Patrick’s School Nurses, including our COVID-19 Point-of-Contact
The policies and protocols included in the Fall 2021 School Opening Plan reflect the work done by these groups, along with Day School faculty and staff and maintenance and operations personnel, since March 2020. We will continue to take robust advantage of the range of publications, advisories, presentations, webinars, and networking calls that have enabled us to learn more about the medical, instructional, technological, and operational realities in the context of the coronavirus pandemic and our response as an institution and a community.
In specific and particular ways, these policies and protocols also reflect the Health and Safety Guidance for Schools and Childcare Facilities issued by the Office of the State Superintendent of Education (OSSE) and the District of Columbia Department of Health (DC Health), informed by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). These documents include local guidance dated August 6 (Travel), August 9 (OSSE statement), August 11 (Childcare Facilities), and August 20 (PK-Grade 12 Schools, revising August 6 and August 18 Guidance), 2021. On June 14, 2021, St. Patrick’s submitted to OSSE for review our plan to safely open school in accordance with health and safety guidance, a process that we completed without the need for any changes.
In May, July, and August 2021, the Head of School and Division Heads conducted Town Hall meetings with parents and other community members via videoconference, meetings that were well-attended and recordings of which were subsequently shared with the entire parent body. Many of the components of this plan have already been presented to the community in the Town Hall format, although particular details may have changed as we moved to respond to changes in the coronavirus environment, the emerging knowledge base, and revised OSSE and DC Health guidance.
Given the dynamic nature of the coronavirus, we should recognize that our policies and protocols will continue to evolve as the coronavirus evolves and public-health recommendations and requirements evolve in response. Guiding our ongoing decision-making process will be the effectiveness of these policies and protocols in the context of full-time, on-campus teaching and learning for students and faculty and staff as well as factors that are more external to St. Patrick’s. Included in the latter are measures of community transmission of COVID-19, such as the number of cases reported in the District of Columbia, the positivity rate for those who are tested for COVID-19, and the rate at which individuals with COVID-19 transmit the disease. We will also remain attentive to the availability of COVID-19 vaccines for school-age children under 12 years old and the rate at which St. Patrick’s students receive the vaccine, which we strongly encourage at this time for all children, as they become eligible. Already we require full vaccination for faculty and staff and will begin the 2021-2022 school year with all members of the faculty and staff fully vaccinated.
The ongoing planning and decision-making process will continue at both the Board of Trustees and senior administrative levels, as described above. We are determined to have that process reflect the measured, deliberate approach that has characterized our planning throughout the pandemic. At every step along the way, we will put the health and safety of our students and our faculty and staff at the center of our conversations. We will alert the community to any changes in the Fall 2021 School Opening Plan as we move through the 2021-2022 school year.
This Fall 2021 School Opening Plan largely spells out the steps the Day School has taken, or will take, to promote the health and safety of our students, faculty and staff, and wider community during the coronavirus pandemic. However, school-based efforts alone will be unsuccessful in promoting everyone’s health and safety. Instead, all members of the Day School community must recognize, and act upon, their shared responsibilities, both in and out of school, to engage in and promote healthy behaviors themselves and by their children and other household members as advised by medical professionals and public-health officials to curb the spread of COVID-19.
Recognizing how quickly COVID-19 can spread within a community, the choices that all of us—adults as well as children—make with respect to our behaviors, both in and out of school, will ultimately determine the success of our plan to provide on-campus learning for St. Patrick’s students. By sending your children to St. Patrick’s for on-campus learning, you are agreeing to act in a forthright and otherwise responsible manner that promotes the best interests of all of the students, faculty and staff, and families that comprise the Day School community and of the wider communities of which we are a part.
Specifically, we expect all members of our community to act in accordance with the health and safety protocols set forth in the Fall 2021 School Opening Plan and to commit to the following best practices at all times. A failure to comply can result in at least the temporary loss of the ability to participate in on-campus learning, without the availability of a remote-learning option, and, in extreme cases, separation from the community.
- Follow Federal, State, and Local Public-Health Orders: Our students and families and faculty and staff come from two states and the District of Columbia. We expect all households to comply with or exceed applicable directives from federal, state, and local departments of health regarding measures to reduce the spread of COVID-19. Given our location in the District of Columbia, the Day School and our families and faculty and staff are required to follow orders of the Mayor of the District of Columbia, DC Health, and OSSE insofar as those orders have implications for the school attendance of their children.
- Report Symptoms: Families and faculty and staff must report symptoms and temperatures via the Daily Health Survey in Magnus Mobile in an accurate and forthright manner before coming to school each day, and families must share a screenshot of the “Go” screen upon arrival. Symptoms include new or worsening cough, shortness of breath or difficulty breathing, new loss of taste or smell, fever or chills, muscle or body aches, headache, sore throat, an unusual amount of tiredness, nausea or vomiting, congestion or runny nose, or diarrhea. If your child has any of these symptoms, please report them to the Health Office in addition to reporting them via Magnus.
- Stay Home If Sick: Parents/guardians must keep their children at home—and members of the faculty and staff must stay at home rather than come to school—if they are sick or exhibiting COVID-19 symptoms, as above, and alert the Health Office to those symptoms. Parents/guardians and members of the faculty and staff must clear all returns to school with the Health Office.
- Stay Home If Exposed: Parents/guardians must keep their children at home—and members of the faculty and staff must stay at home rather than come to school—if there is reason to believe that there has been exposure to someone who is infected with COVID-19 or who is awaiting the results of a COVID-19 test as a result of known exposure and alert the Health Office to that exposure. Parents/guardians and members of the faculty and staff must clear all returns to school with the Health Office.
- Limit On-Campus Visits: Parents/guardians must limit their onsite visits to emergencies or otherwise essential purposes. Any parent/guardian or visitor needing to be onsite will be expected to adhere to all safety protocols as stated in the School Opening Plan.
- Travel: Families should remain mindful of the implications for possible COVID-19 exposure, for individuals not fully vaccinated, of the modes and destinations of travel in which they engage, as articulated elsewhere in this document. Families should limit non-essential domestic travel, especially to areas of the country experiencing high rates of COVID-19 infection, and avoid travel to international destinations with a CDC Level 2, 3, or 4 Travel Health Notice for COVID-19. DC Health Guidance for Travel, dated August 6, 2021, is available here. However, please note that most of these provisions (except where preceded by a “must” rather than a “should” or an “are recommended to”) are advisory in nature. Please see further guidance under “Travel.”
- Large Gatherings: All household members who are not fully vaccinated should avoid large gatherings, particularly indoor gatherings, and any gatherings at which appropriate protocols are not in place, including physical distancing and mask-wearing, and include individuals who are not fully vaccinated or whose vaccination status is unknown. Even smaller, indoors, family- or neighborhood-based gatherings should be of concern if they include individuals who are not fully vaccinated or whose vaccination status is unknown. Fully vaccinated individuals, too, should be mindful of the risks involved in large gatherings.
- Face Masks: Families must provide clean, well-fitting, three-layer fabric or paper masks, for their children to be worn at school each day. St. Patrick’s will no longer provide student masks. Please remember to keep cloth masks laundered and make sure that your child has two clean masks each day upon departure for school. All household members, regardless of their vaccination status, should be wearing masks in public indoor places. All individuals above the age of two years old must wear face masks when on the St. Patrick’s campuses, except as provided elsewhere in this document. St. Patrick’s will make available KN95 masks, or a reasonable alternative, to faculty and staff to wear at school.
- Hygiene: Individual hygiene can play an important role in slowing the spread of COVID-19. All household members should practice and reinforce proper handwashing, coughing/sneezing behaviors, appropriate distancing, and other good habits at home and out in the wider community.
- Medical Forms and Emergency Contacts: Parents/guardians must upload required student health forms to Magnus before the start of the school year and make sure that emergency contacts are current, including at least two individuals who can promptly pick up a child who has become ill at school. Parents/guardians must also make certain that children’s immunizations are current. Public-health officials are concerned about outbreaks of vaccine-preventable diseases if children are not getting immunized during this challenging time.
- Seasonal Flu Shots: All students and all members of the faculty and staff must receive flu shots by November 1, 2021, unless there are health reasons they cannot receive a flu shot documented by the individual’s healthcare provider.
- Outside-of-School Activities: In planning students’ outside-of-school activities, parents/guardians must be mindful of the relative risk of different activities with respect to their potential to spread COVID-19 and the degree to which layers of mitigation—such as masking, distancing, and group size—can be applied. For guidance in weighing those risks, we offer the following categorizations and examples:
- Higher-Risk Activities: Crowded, poorly ventilated indoor events such as movies; dining indoors at restaurants; sports that involve close, sustained contact between participants and high probability that respiratory particles will be transmitted between participants (including wrestling, football, basketball, hockey, lacrosse, martial arts, soccer, squash); and activities where masks cannot be worn (including sleepovers)
- Moderate-Risk Activities: Outdoor events such as movies or picnics where distance can be maintained between participants; sports that involve close, sustained contact, but with protective equipment in place that may reduce the likelihood of respiratory particles being transmitted between participants OR sports with intermittent close contact (including flag football, volleyball, ultimate frisbee, field hockey, baseball, softball); outdoor playdates with small groups of friends who can stay socially distant from one another; indoor playdates with one or two friends with physical distancing and strict masking protocols in place.
- Lower-Risk Activities: Outside activities, with a limited number of individuals, and where physical distancing can be maintained such as nature walks and bike-riding; sports that can be played with social distancing or individually without sharing of equipment (including archery, tennis, fencing, golf, gymnastics, horseback riding, ice skating, skiing, swimming, and track & field; outdoor playdates with one or two friends where physical distancing can be maintained.
Please note that while a particular activity may be deemed of low or moderate risk, parents should remain mindful of the level of risk presented by situations that often precede and follow these activities, such as carpooling, dinners, and sleepovers.
Symptoms of COVID-19 may include fever (100.4 degrees Fahrenheit or higher), chills, cough, shortness of breath or difficulty breathing, fatigue, muscle or body aches, headache, new loss of taste or smell, sore throat, congestion or runny nose, nausea or vomiting, or diarrhea.
DC Health states that all individuals age 18 and older who are experiencing any of the symptoms above—that are new or unexplained—must stay home and not enter a school.
DC Health states that individuals who are younger than 18 who are experiencing the following symptoms—that are new or unexplained—must stay home and not enter a school:
Any ONE of these “red-flag” symptoms:
Fever (100.4 degrees or higher)
New or worsening cough
Shortness of breath or difficulty breathing
New loss of taste or smell
To which St. Patrick’s adds as “red-flag” symptoms:
Nausea or vomiting
OR at least two of the following symptoms:
Muscle or body aches
An unusual amount of tiredness
Runny nose or congestion
If your child develops any of these symptoms, please complete the Magnus Daily Health Survey accordingly, keep your child at home, contact your healthcare provider for further guidance, and alert the Health Office, and faculty and staff should do likewise. Individuals may return to school once they have St. Patrick’s return-to-school guidelines after an illness and any other applicable requirements set forth below.
Students or members of the faculty and staff with pre-existing health conditions that present with specific COVID-19-like symptoms may not be excluded from entering the school building on the basis of those specific symptoms, as long as they have been previously evaluated by their healthcare provider and notified the Health Office of those specific symptoms and those specific symptoms have been determined not to be due to COVID-19, as provided by DC Health/OSSE.
COVID-19 (SARS-CoV-2) is a highly contagious disease that spreads by person-to-person contact. According to the CDC, COVID-19 spreads when an infected person breathes out droplets and particles that contain the virus. These droplets and particles can be breathed in by other people or land on their eyes, nose, or mouth, especially through splashes and sprays like a cough or sneeze, or be transmitted by touching the eyes, nose, or mouth with hands that have virus on them. COVID-19 may be spread by individuals who are not showing any symptoms.
There are steps that individuals can take to keep themselves, their children, and those around them safe from COVID-19:
- getting fully vaccinated against COVID-19 (currently available for individuals age 12 and older);
- for individuals age 2 and older, wearing a face mask, especially in public, indoor settings, as well as in crowded outdoor settings or during outdoor activities that involve sustained close contact with others.
- practicing physical distancing;
- washing your hands—and your child’s hands—frequently with soap and water, especially before eating, after using the bathroom, and upon returning home;
- covering coughs and sneezes;
- avoiding touching your eyes, face, and mouth;
- monitoring your health—and that of your child—daily; and
- staying home if you are sick and keeping your child home if your child appears to be sick.
- Daily Health Screening
- Complete Daily Health Survey
- Face Masks
- Arrive at School
- Student Cohorts
- Physical Distancing
- Surveillance Testing
- Parents/Guardians and Other Visitors to Campus
- Health and Sanitization
Parents/guardians must make an initial assessment of their child’s health each morning and take their child’s temperature before departing for school. If the child’s temperature is 100.4 or higher, the child’s parents/guardians are to contact their healthcare provider for further guidance. They should also contact the Health Office. The child is to stay home from school for 24 hours after the fever has resolved without the use of fever-reducing medication (e.g., Motrin, Tylenol).
Parents/guardians must complete a daily COVID-19 self-assessment for each child via Magnus Mobile before leaving home. Members of the faculty and staff must also complete the self-assessment, the COVID-19 Daily Health Survey, which serves as a daily health baseline for the child or adult prior to entering the school each morning. Magnus provides the following directions:
1. Login to the Magnus Mobile V2 App for Apple or the Magnus Health App for Android on your mobile device by using Keychain, a password manager, or typing in your username and password.
2. If you have multiple students, select the first student you are completing the Daily Survey for by clicking that student’s name.
3. Select the COVID-19 button in the bottom center of your screen.
4. Select the Daily Survey, which will have a message stating the Requirement is Incomplete under it.
5. Once you are in the Daily Survey, review the message at the top of the screen for additional directions if your school has added additional directions.
6. Complete each question in the Daily Survey by either choosing a Yes/No answer or filling in the blank answer box relative to the question.
7. Once you have completed all the questions on the Daily Survey, select Save at the bottom of the screen.
8. Once you select Save, you will be brought to the screen that has the answers you provided and either a Stop or Go message and icon at the top of the screen. If you see a Stop response, your student should not go to school and you should follow the directions provided below the Stop sign, if there are any. If you see a Go response, your student is appropriate for school and you should follow the directions below the Go sign, if there are any.
9. Click the OK button at the bottom of the screen once you have reviewed your results and the Stop or Go sign.
No child will be admitted to the school without this form being completed and submitted by 7:30 AM. Faculty and staff must complete the survey by 7:15 AM. Infant-Toddler Center caregivers must complete the survey by 7:15 AM. In order to enable families to become accustomed to the Magnus Mobile COVID-19 Daily Survey, we ask parents/guardians to begin submitting the form on September 1.
Having completed the COVID-19 Daily Health Survey for each child, parents/guardians must take a screenshot of the “Go” screen to display as verification to the member of the faculty and staff who is monitoring compliance at arrival carpool. It is the responsibility of students who are walking, biking, or taking the bus to school to provide that verification to the appropriate individual.
The text of the Magnus COVID-19 Student Daily Health Survey is below:
Parents/guardians must respond to each question below for each student daily during the school week and on any day on which their child will participate in school-based, school-related activities.
The survey should be completed by a specific time each morning. For ITC children, forms should be completed by 7:15 AM. For students in Nursery to Grade 8, forms should be completed by 7:30 AM. Please respond to each question.
I acknowledge that I have read and understand the contents of this form and that I am answering the questions below related to my child’s health and COVID-19 exposure truthfully and to the best of my ability.
I am aware that St. Patrick's Episcopal Day School has implemented these health guidelines to keep students, families, and faculty and staff as safe and as healthy as possible. I understand that St. Patrick's cannot guarantee, even with all health measures in place, that the campus will remain virus-free and that individuals who are present on a regular or irregular basis will not contract COVID-19. I understand that all information will be kept confidential.
Is the student experiencing any ONE of these symptoms: Fever, new or worsening cough, shortness of breath/difficulty breathing, new loss of taste or smell, nausea or vomiting, or diarrhea? Y or N
Is the student experiencing at least TWO of the following symptoms: Chills, muscle or body aches, headache, sore throat, an unusual amount of tiredness, or runny nose or congestion? Y or N
Is the student awaiting the results of a COVID-19 test that is not for surveillance purposes? Y or N
Has the student tested positive for COVID-19 in the past 14 days? Y or N
Has the student been in close contact with a person who has tested positive, or is awaiting the results of a test, for COVID-19 in the past 14 days? Y or N
Please record the student’s morning temperature here: ____________
If you answered YES to any of the questions above, please explain to the best of your ability. If all of the above responses were NO please enter N/A.
Should your child have a “YES” answer to any question, the child may not enter school—nor may a member of the faculty and staff—and you must contact the Health Office to determine next steps. The individual may return to school when the following conditions have been met:
The individual has been cleared to return by the individual’s healthcare provider with an alternate diagnosis and meets St. Patrick’s return-to-school guidelines after an illness.
The individual remains home while awaiting COVID-19 test results, has a negative COVID-19 test, AND meets St. Patrick’s return-to-school guidelines after an illness.
If the individual does not complete a COVID-19 test and does not fall into the above-listed categories, the individual must complete the appropriate isolation period:
The individual meets St. Patrick’s return-to-school guidelines after an illness AND
At least 10 days have passed since symptoms first appeared, whichever is later.
Students or members of the faculty and staff with pre-existing health conditions that present with specific COVID-19-like symptoms may not be excluded from entering the school building on the basis of those specific symptoms, as long as they have been previously evaluated by their healthcare provider and notified the Health Office of those specific symptoms and those specific symptoms have been determined not to be due to COVID-19, as provided by DC Health/OSSE.
All students above the age of two years old, faculty and staff, visitors, and contractors must wear face masks while indoors in any St. Patrick’s facility, regardless of their vaccination status, except during snack and lunch times and periods of nap or rest, pursuant to and in accordance with DC Health/OSSE requirements. In general, individuals do not need to wear masks outdoors, but there may be specific instances when we will require masks outdoors, particularly in crowded settings or during activities that involve sustained close contact with others.
Unlike the 2020-2021 school year, St. Patrick’s will not provide face masks for students but will continue to make KN95 masks, or a reasonable alternative, available to faculty and staff to wear at school, as desired. Parents/guardians must provide clean, three-layer fabric or paper masks for their children that cover the nose and mouth, that fit snugly against the sides of the face, and that the children have become accustomed to wearing comfortably. Students should have at least one additional clean mask in their backpacks in case one becomes soiled or wet. Of course, we will also have disposable replacement masks available, but students would be well-served to have at least one additional mask to which they are accustomed. Please note that the two-ply Crayola masks on which we relied last year are no longer sufficient.
No masks claim or guarantee to prevent transmission of, or infection with, any disease, including COVID-19. All faculty and staff will also be issued plastic goggles and multi-use face shields, upon request. As stated above, we will keep a supply of disposable masks on hand in the event a student, a member of the faculty and staff, a contractor, or any other individual needs a mask.
Students may begin arriving at 7:30 AM (Middle School), 7:40 AM (Lower School), and 8:05 AM (Nursery School). Families with children in more than one division may begin arriving at 7:40 AM. On the Whitehaven Campus, students will use one of three designated entrances, based on division and grade level, for arrival and departure, all in the interest of avoiding crowding and the loss of physical distancing that would result. Upon arrival in the carpool line, all children and others in the vehicle must place their masks on to be prepared for the approach of carpool monitors. As students enter school, they will use hand sanitizer and report directly to their cohort classrooms rather than report to one of several supervised central gathering places as in years past. Lower School students arriving before 7:50 AM, when they are welcomed into their cohort classrooms, will wait in the hallway outside those classrooms. The infant-Toddler Center has also designated multiple locations for ITC caregivers to receive children upon arrival to avoid clustering of children or parents.
Please note: For many years, until last year, St. Patrick’s has encouraged carpooling to enable arrival and dismissal times to proceed safely and efficiently, to reduce the impact of the Day School on the surrounding community, and to reduce the impact of the Day School on the environment. However, as we continue to face the challenges of the coronavirus pandemic, we will discourage carpooling to avoid mixing children beyond their immediate families and households and their instructional cohorts.
Cohorts are relatively small, distinct, stable groups of students and teachers who stay together throughout the school day. We will continue to rely on the cohort as the basic unit of organization and instruction, but cohort size and composition will change as one moves up in grade levels, with all cohorts above the Nursery School larger than they were in the 2020-2021 school year. Nursery School cohorts will comprise nine or 10 students, while Lower School cohorts will generally range from 13 to 19 students. In Middle School, each grade will operate as a single, grade-level cohort, recognizing that cohorting, according to DC Health, “is more feasible in the younger grades than in higher grades where students may switch classes more frequently throughout the school day.” Cohorts will generally not mix indoors during the school day but will mix at outdoor recess within their grade-level bands. There will be some mixing, within grade-level bands, in Extended Day and After-School Activities.
Leading each Nursery School and Lower School cohort will be a homeroom teacher or learning specialist, although we have been able to reassign most learning specialists to that vital role. Special-subject teachers will either teach their classes in cohort classrooms or in their special-subject classrooms.
DC Health recommends physical distancing to prevent or limit the spread of COVID-19. The recommendations include at least three feet of distancing between students in PK to Grade 12 classrooms and at least six feet of distancing in a variety of other settings, including between students outside of the classroom setting (such as recess and physical education classes) and during activities when masks cannot be worn (such as eating lunch) and between students and faculty and staff.
St. Patrick’s has sized cohorts, located cohort classrooms, and configured classroom furnishings (individual student desks, facing in the same direction) in a manner that enables us to maintain at least three feet of distancing—and more generally at least four feet of distancing—between students in Lower School and Middle School classroom settings. (Please remember that Middle School students will function as grade-level cohorts, but we will strive to maintain a minimum of four feet of distancing in their classrooms.) In the Infant-Toddler Center and Nursery School, where DC Health recommends six feet of distancing more consistently, we will strive to maintain the recommended distancing, even as we recognize the challenges of doing so among our youngest children.
This year, we anticipate some level of increased student movement in Day School buildings, such as when Nursery School and Lower School students go to special-subject classrooms and as Middle School students change classes during the day. We will therefore control pedestrian flow in hallways and stairwells and provide markers along hallways and in other settings in order to assist students in maintaining appropriate physical distancing when they are out of their cohort classrooms.
St. Patrick’s will require weekly COVID-19 PCR testing for all students, faculty and staff, and contractors, regardless of vaccination status. Relying on a process established and refined during the 2020-2021 school year, testing—administered by our provider, Capital Diagnostics—will occur each Friday during the school day in the tent on upper Whitehaven Parkway and at the MacArthur Campus for Middle School students. Students and members of the faculty and staff can also test at other locations, but it must be a PCR test, meet certain parameters with respect to timing, and be uploaded to the Magnus Health Portal. Generally, the test must occur between Thursday and Saturday of that week, and the results must be uploaded to Magnus by Sunday at 6:00 PM in order to attend school on Monday. No individual may return to school on Monday if offsite tests are pending or have not been uploaded to the Magnus Health Portal. If families or members of the faculty and staff are planning to test at a location other than St. Patrick’s, regardless of the reason, they must email the Health Office of their intentions by Friday. Individuals who have tested positive for COVID-19 in the last 60 days will not participate in regular weekly testing.
Parents/guardians must restrict their visits to the Day School to emergency—or “essential”—purposes only, such as picking up a sick child from school. If a child has forgotten an important item at home, the parent/guardian can deliver the item to the reception area on the MacArthur Campus or the Whitehaven Campus, and the receptionist will arrange for the item to be delivered to the child. Parents/guardians will not be admitted beyond the reception area on either campus, except to pick up a child who has become sick during the day. In those cases, parents/guardians will have their temperatures taken before they can proceed beyond the reception area. Likewise, other visitors will be restricted from visiting the Day School unless their presence is deemed essential. Any such visitors will be subject to the same entry protocols.
If we can return to our preferred posture of welcoming parents/guardians into Day School buildings for specific activities, based on measures of COVID-19 community transmission, we will limit any such presence to individuals who have provided our Health Office, in advance, with proof of full vaccination, including any boosters as they become available. We are designing a process for securely receiving proof of full vaccination from those parents/guardians who choose to provide it.
The Office of Enrollment Management, which conducted the 2020-2021 admission process almost exclusively virtually—including any tours or visits associated with the process, until on-campus weekend tours at its conclusion in March—will begin the 2021-2022 cycle with that same expectation of virtual activity. However, as above, we will remain attentive to the possibility that levels of COVID-19 community transmission will eventually enable the Office of Enrollment Management to offer some or all of the planned activities onsite for fully vaccinated individuals.
Contractors performing essential maintenance or service calls will be required to have their temperatures taken and to wear face masks upon entering the building. They will also be required to observe appropriate physical-distancing measures. To the extent possible, we will schedule maintenance and service calls for times when students will not be in the building.
The Health Offices on the Whitehaven Campus and MacArthur Campus will provide a separate, sanitized space for students or adults exhibiting possible symptoms of COVID-19 so that they may be isolated temporarily for care as they await departure from school. On the Whitehaven Campus, we have provided a separate two-room facility (along the hallway across from the science labs) with ready access to a bathroom for the purposes of the Health Office and isolation protocols. On the MacArthur Campus, more routine health needs will be re-routed so that the existing Health Office can be used for the purposes of isolation.
Frequently touched surfaces such as handrails, door hardware, and playground equipment will be sanitized with disinfectant wipes frequently throughout the day. Each classroom will be equipped with disinfectant wipes and hand sanitizer for frequent wipe-downs of surfaces and hand sanitization between handwashing breaks.
- Potential and Positive Cases of COVID-19
- Close Contact with a Person Who Is Positive for COVID-19
- Awaiting a COVID-19 Test Result
- Confirmed Positive COVID-19 Test Result
- Communication to Day School Families and Faculty and Staff
- Clearance by Health Office
When there is a suspected case of COVID-19, which will be determined by the presence of symptoms identified earlier in this document, either singly or in combination with another symptom or other symptoms, that child or adult will be moved into the Health Office area designated for isolation for care and awaiting departure from school. For students, parents/guardians will immediately be notified and expected to pick up their child within 30 minutes of notification. Any member of the faculty and staff or the parents/guardians of any students with symptoms of COVID-19 are then to contact their healthcare provider to determine if COVID-19 testing is indicated. The Day School will immediately deploy cleaning and disinfecting procedures for any areas and materials with which the student or the member of the faculty and staff has been in contact.
If presenting with individual COVID-19 symptoms—to include, according to DC Health/OSSE, new or worsening cough, shortness of breath or difficulty breathing, and new loss of taste or smell, as well as fever, nausea or vomiting, and diarrhea—or, for children, more than one of a set of symptoms that include chills, muscle or body aches, headache, sore throat, unusual amount of tiredness, and runny nose or congestion—that student or adult may not return to school until meeting the appropriate criteria below:
- If the individual receives a negative test AND the individual meets the standard criteria for returning to school after an illness.
- If the individual does not receive a COVID-19 test, the individual must:
- Submit documentation from a healthcare provider of an alternate diagnosis and meet the standard criteria to return after illness; OR
- Meet symptom-based criteria to return:
- At least 24 hours after the fever has resolved without the use of fever-reducing medication (e.g., Motrin, Tylenol) and respiratory symptoms have improved
- At least 10 days from when symptoms first appeared, whichever is later.
- Students or faculty and staff with pre-existing health conditions that present with specific COVID-19-like symptoms may not be excluded from entering the school building on the basis of those specific symptoms, if a healthcare provider has provided written documentation that those specific symptoms are not due to COVID-19.
The standard definition of a close contact is an individual who was within six feet of an infected person for at least 15 minutes (cumulatively) over a 24-hour period, starting from two days before illness onset (or, for asymptomatic infected individuals, two days prior to positive test collection) until the infected person is isolated.
In its Guidance for Schools, updated August 18, 2021, DC Health repeats that definition but offers an exception for students in Kindergarten to Grade 12 indoor classroom settings: Specifically, it excludes students who were within three to six feet of an infected fellow student where both students were engaged in consistent and correct use of well-fitting face masks AND other layered prevention strategies were in place, such as universal mask-wearing regardless of vaccination status, physical distancing, and improved ventilation. That final criterion includes virtually all indoor spaces at St. Patrick’s, as we discuss later in this document.
If any student or member of the faculty and staff is deemed to have been in close contact with a person who tests positive for COVID-19, that individual must not return to school until having completed the quarantine period of 10 days from the last date of contact with the COVID-19-positive individual or as instructed by DC Health without becoming symptomatic or being diagnosed with COVID-19.
HOWEVER, that period of quarantine can instead be seven days if the individual has a COVID-19 PCR test on Day 5 or later of the quarantine, receives a negative test result, and has not developed any symptoms. In this scenario, the individual can return on Day 8 following the last exposure. Please note that we do not accept the results of tests other than PCR tests.
Generally speaking, fully vaccinated individuals—as well as those who have had COVID-19 within the last 90 days—who are close contacts of someone with COVID-19 do not need to quarantine. However, these individuals must confirm their status with the Health Office to determine whether they should have a COVID-19 PCR test three to five days after the last exposure to an infected person or take any other precautions, possibly including quarantining, based on the nature of the exposure. A decision to direct a fully vaccinated individual to quarantine as a close contact will rest on the nature of the exposure and the presence, or absence, of particular layers of mitigation. In essence, we will treat next-step decisions for fully vaccinated individuals on a case-by-case basis.
In all instances of exposure to a person infected with COVID-19, individuals should continue to monitor themselves and/or their children for COVID-19 symptoms for a 14-day period, regardless of their vaccination status and any PCR test results, and isolate if they develop symptoms.
The parents/guardians of any student—and any member of the faculty and staff—being tested for COVID-19, regardless of one’s vaccination status, must alert the Health Office. Any student or member of the faculty and staff must not return to school while awaiting the results of any COVID-19 test taken for any reason other than surveillance, regardless of one’s vaccination status.
If any unvaccinated individual has been in close contact with a person who is awaiting a COVID-19 test result, that individual must not return to school until the close contact receives a negative test result. Fully vaccinated individuals may return to school unless a household member who is symptomatic is awaiting the results of a COVID-19 test as a result of known exposure.
If the close contact tests positive, those in close contact with that individual must inform the Health Office, regardless of one’s vaccination status. Such individuals should also seek guidance from their healthcare providers or DC Health, will be contacted by contact-tracers from their jurisdiction, and must quarantine as above.
If a student or member of the faculty and staff is instructed to quarantine, the individual may return according to these criteria:
- 10 days from the last exposure to the COVID-19-positive individual, or as instructed by DC Health.
- HOWEVER, that period of quarantine can instead be seven days if the individual has a COVID-19 PCR test on Day 5 or later of the quarantine, receives a negative test result, and has not developed any symptoms. In this scenario, the individual can return on Day 8 following the last exposure but must continue to monitor for symptoms for 14 days. Please note that we do not accept the results of tests other than PCR tests.
- If the close contact is a household member from whom the student or member of the faculty and staff can isolate, that individual may return to school after a quarantine of 10 days from the last close contact—or seven days, with a test, as above.
- If the close contact is a household member from whom the student or member of the faculty and staff cannot isolate, the individual may return to school after a quarantine of 10 days—or seven days, with a test, as above—from the end of the COVID-19-positive individual’s infectious period (defined by 24 hours after the fever has resolved without the use of fever-reducing medication (e.g., Motrin, Tylenol) and respiratory symptoms have improved AND at least 10 days from when symptoms first appeared, whichever is later).
- In all scenarios, individuals who have been close contacts of a COVID-19-positive individual should monitor themselves for symptoms for 14 days.
For Asymptomatic and Positive Test: An individual who did not show symptoms of COVID-19 but did test positive must consult a healthcare provider and must stay at home until at least 10 days have passed since the positive test for COVID-19, assuming that the individual did not develop symptoms since the positive test.
In either case, close contacts (including all members of the household) must quarantine for 10 days from the last date of close contact with the COVID-19-positive individual—or seven days, with a test, as above.
In the event a student or member of the faculty and staff is confirmed to have COVID-19, the Day School will notify DC Health, which will, in turn, instruct St. Patrick’s on appropriate dismissal and other safety protocols, including specific individuals or groups that will need to quarantine. While close contacts will only be instructed to quarantine if the sick individual is confirmed to have COVID-19, it will be essential that all students and faculty and staff closely monitor for symptoms at all times and stay home and seek medical attention if those symptoms develop.
In practice, St. Patrick’s School Nurses conduct initial contact-tracing in instances when a case of COVID-19 is either suspected or confirmed, even in advance of any DC Health determinations. Internal contact-tracing by the School Nurses, which St. Patrick’s in turn shares with DC Health, can result in a school-based decision to have an individual student or groups of students begin to quarantine, out of an abundance of caution, as we await further DC Health guidance.
The Day School has appointed a COVID-19 point-of-contact, as directed by DC Health/OSSE: Middle School health educator and school nurse Judy Barr, MSN/Ed. The COVID-19 point-of-contact is responsible for ensuring the appropriate steps are followed in the event of a confirmed case of COVID-19 and acting as the point-of-contact for families and faculty and staff to notify if a child or member of the faculty and staff tests positive for COVID-19.
The Day School will communicate in ways that protect the privacy of individuals and alert families and faculty and staff to a COVID-19 case. Those protocols will include:
- notifying families of students and faculty and staff in close contact with the individual, including the need for any period of quarantine;
- notifying the entire school that there has been a COVID-19 positive case, that those having been in close contact have been told to quarantine, and that appropriate steps will be taken to clean and disinfect the corresponding areas;
- educating the community to the signs and symptoms of COVID-19;
- referring members of the community to the Guidance for Contacts of a Person Confirmed to Have COVID-19; and
- informing members of the community about options for COVID-19 testing in the District of Columbia.
DC Health will instruct the Day School on dismissals and other safety precautions in the event a known COVID-19-positive individual came into close contact with others at school. Our COVID-19 point-of-contact may make preliminary decisions regarding dismissals, quarantining, and other safety precautions in advance of a final determination by DC Health.
Please note that, for St. Patrick’s students who are not fully vaccinated, the domestic travel quarantine requirements that DC Health had set in place during the 2020-2021 school year will remain in place until September 15, 2021, at which time the following guidelines become effective.
There are no longer domestic travel quarantine requirements for students in all schools in the District of Columbia, including those students who are not fully vaccinated. (Any such requirements had already been lifted for individuals who are fully vaccinated.) While we generally welcome the lifting of those requirements—particularly insofar as they resulted in seemingly arbitrary or illogical restrictions—we ask that parents/guardians and members of our faculty and staff remain mindful of possible COVID-19 exposure that results from various forms of travel. In that spirit, we offer the following guidelines for travel involving individuals who are not fully vaccinated:
- Families should limit non-essential travel, especially domestically to areas of the country experiencing high rates of COVID-19 infection, and avoid travel to international destinations with a CDC Level 2, 3, or 4 Travel Health Notice for COVID-19.
- If families are travelling, we strongly encourage relatively short road trips with only family/household members in private vehicles, without stops or with limited stops for low-risk activities along the way.
- Other forms of travel—including air, train, or bus—can involve spending time in terminals and security lines and the loss of physical distancing in those situations and possibly during the time of travel, even if, as in the case of air travel, most viruses and other germs do not spread easily because of how air circulates on airplanes. Therefore, we discourage these forms of travel on a non-essential basis.
- Should families with children who are not fully vaccinated choose to engage in non-essential travel, they should be mindful of the nature of the activities in which they will be engaged upon arrival, which should be consistent with the protocols outlined here with respect to the wearing of masks, physical distancing, individual hygiene, and knowledge of others’ vaccination status.
- St. Patrick’s Anywhere, Our Continuous Learning Plan, is not available for students who are engaged in travel, with the possible exception of periods of time following school holidays such as Thanksgiving, Christmas Break, and Spring Break.
- DC Health Guidance for Travel, dated August 6, 2021, is available here. That Health Guidance recommends that individuals who are not fully vaccinated self-quarantine for 10 days after returning home—or seven days, as above, with a COVID-19 PCR test on Day 3 or later after returning home.
- Please note that most of these provisions (except where preceded by a “must” rather than a “should” or an “are recommended to”) are advisory in nature. However, based on how individuals have traveled, their destinations, and the nature of the activities in which they were involved, quarantine upon return, along with a COVID-19 PCR test, may be advisable. St. Patrick’s reserves the right to require post-travel quarantine and COVID-19 PCR testing for individuals who are not fully vaccinated.
- All travelers, regardless of vaccination status or COVID-19 history, should self-monitor before, during, and after travel for any symptoms of COVID-19.
Throughout the 2020-2021 school year and in preparation for the 2021-2022 school year, St. Patrick’s implemented a number of facilities and operational upgrades based on DC Health and CDC guidelines as they relate to air quality, faucets and water fountains, sanitization, and suspected or confirmed cases of COVID-19.
With the significant upgrades made to our air-handling systems in the 2020-2021 school year, we move into the 2021-2022 school year with those same upgrades in place to maintain the quality of the air flowing into the facilities.
Fresh and recirculated air is filtered before it is distributed to the various HVAC vents. We have installed UV light systems that filter and purify fresh and recirculated air before it is delivered to occupied spaces and cold plasma generators installed within air ducts that destroy bacteria and produce ions essential to healthy indoor air quality. We have also installed MERV 9-13 filters on all HVAC systems and change filters quarterly. In addition, we will continue the process of running the fresh-air, air-handling, and power exhaust systems through our Building Automation System continuously, rather than not running them at night or on weekends, to further purify indoor air.
Our Facilities Director, who has a DCRA HVAC mechanical journeyman license, leads efforts involving ventilation systems and water systems. We have standing contracts for preventive maintenance of our HVAC and water systems. For example, the preventive maintenance provided by our HVAC contractor includes changing belts, checking pressures, greasing bearings on blower motors, cleaning condenser coils, cleaning the cooling tower, amperage testing, heating and cooling cycle testing, and cleaning inside housings.
The Day School consulted with a mechanical engineer once HVAC improvements identified above were operational to measure the air turnover rate in each space. Readings for air turnover rates showed that the average level of CO2 was well below the minimum standards required for healthy indoor air quality. Portable air purifiers, air scrubbers, and a disinfectant fogger machine continue to be in place for sanitizing the air where there are suspected or confirmed cases of COVID-19. In addition, we have portable air scrubbers operating in hallways and common areas and air purifiers operating in individual classrooms on a regular basis.
The information above, of course, refers to interior spaces. Given the desirability of exterior spaces during the coronavirus pandemic, we have installed tents in three different locations to promote outdoor instruction and other activities. Those tents, which we removed during the summer months, have been reinstalled on the grassy area near the diagonal parking spaces along upper Whitehaven Parkway and on the Foxhall Campus. The St. Patrick’s Garden & Outdoor Learning Space on the Foxhall Campus, which was installed last summer, will continue to provide an exciting outdoor space for use across the grade levels. Students in cohort groups will also have scheduled access to our three playgrounds across each day and week, with regular wipe-downs of the play equipment in those locations.
All bathrooms have been equipped with touchless faucets to ensure that faculty and staff and students can minimize their contact with bathroom surfaces. Not only do these faucets reduce the number of surfaces touched during the day, they also limit the waste of water, which is core to our environmental sustainability goals. In addition, all water fountains in common areas are limited to water bottle-refill only. Inline water coolers for each classroom have been installed to limit the movement of students into common areas during the day.
Our operational strategy to prevent the spread of COVID-19 has been to ensure our cleaning protocols follow CDC guidelines. These guidelines encourage institutions to consider the important differences between cleaning, sanitizing, and disinfecting and recommend the best chemicals to use and how to apply them. We know we need different protocols for different circumstances. For example, if we have an individual who tests positive for COVID-19, either a student or a member of the faculty and staff, that particular classroom or other space will need to be closed for a certain period of time for disinfection. We will continue to use the CDC guidelines, along with other occupational and environmental recommendations, to learn and implement the safest and most current practices in school facilities. Likewise, we will continue to seek guidance from DC Health with respect to sanitization when an individual tests positive for COVID-19.
We have separate and distinct protocols for any adult or child who tests positive for COVID-19. The office or classroom in which that individual works or studies will need to be closed for a certain period of time for disinfection. For suspected cases, we will implement CDC guidelines, along with other occupational and environmental recommendations, including immediately closing off and sanitizing the affected area. We will also seek guidance from DC Health with respect to sanitization. Portable air purifiers and scrubbers will continue to be available for deployment in these situations.
In the event of a confirmed COVID-19 case in a student or a member of the faculty and staff, the Day School will follow all steps outlined by DC Health as well as the cleaning, disinfection, and sanitization guidance from the CDC, including:
If 24 hours or fewer have passed since the person who is sick used the facility, the Day School will
Close off areas used by the individual who is sick.
Open outside doors and windows, as possible, to increase air circulation in those areas.
Clean and disinfect all areas used by the individual who is sick, including classrooms, bathrooms, and common areas.
If more than 24 hours have passed since the person who is sick or diagnosed with COVID-19 has been in the space, cleaning is enough. We may also choose to disinfect depending on the circumstances. certain conditions or everyday maintenance practices required by your facility.
If more than three days have passed since the person who is sick or diagnosed with COVID-19 has been in the space, no additional cleaning (beyond regular cleaning practices) is needed.
Students in Nursery have physical education once during the six-day rotation, and students in PK to Grade 4 have physical education twice during the six-day rotation, with younger students having 30-minute classes and older students having 50-minute classes. Grade 5 students have physical education three times during the six-day rotation. Middle School students return to a structure where Grade 6 students have physical education two or three times a week and Grades 7 and 8 students participate in athletics in lieu of having physical education classes. As often as possible, physical education classes will occur outside on one of our playing fields or on the Sports Deck. We will use the gymnasium for inclement weather days and maintain the integrity of cohorts when indoors.
In the fall of 2021, the Middle School athletics program will resume a regular schedule of sports offerings, with students having the option of participating in cross country or soccer. In Grade 6, each sport is an elective, with practices taking place three afternoons a week and with several scheduled games or meets across the season. Grade 6 students might wear masks during soccer practices and games, depending on the proximity of other students, weather conditions, and requirements of the competition we have scheduled. Grades 7 and 8 students, whose vaccination rates exceed 93%, will not need to mask during practices and competition. Families received athletics schedules during the summer. In Grades 7 and 8, students must participate in either soccer or cross country, or they may receive a waiver for the season. Practices take place three days a week, with games scheduled on one of those three days for several weeks. The winter and spring seasons are not yet defined. We will provide information about these two seasons as it becomes available.
In addition, we will offer Developmental Athletics for students in Grades 3 to 5. In the fall, Grade 5 students may participate in soccer, flag football, or cross country. These clinics will take place two afternoons a week. Students in Grades 3 and 4 may participate in soccer one afternoon a week. Students participating in soccer and flag football may wear masks depending on the proximity of other students and weather conditions.
We will offer After-School Activities once again during the 2021-2022 school year, on a limited basis at least during the fall session. Individual After-School Activities will be offered to students within a single grade-level band, and students within that grade level may mix. Many of these activities will be offered outside, with some limited indoor offerings. During indoor After-School Activities, we will observe masking for all participants and physical distancing of six feet. Group size will remain small during the fall offerings with no more than 10 students in any given activity. Families received registration materials during the week of August 23, 2021.
Extended Day has been, and will always be, an integral part of the offerings provided to families. We recognize the importance of this essential element and are pleased to offer the program through 6:00 PM when school starts in September. Safety protocols in place will continue to match the protocols during the regular school day. Extended Day cohorts will be limited in size and include students from a single grade level. Registration protocols will enable us to maintain the integrity of our Extended Day cohorts by keeping attendance consistent. Drop-in care will also be provided.
Students will eat lunch with their assigned cohorts and in their cohort classroom or outdoors. Given that students will, of necessity, remove their masks during lunch, we will strive to maintain six feet of physical distancing and, where possible, eat outdoors. A key difference for the 2021-2022 school year is that all students, by cohort, will go to the Whitehaven Campus Lunch Room or the MacArthur Campus Dining Room to make their selections—which will include hot meal, sandwich, and salad options—and then take their food to their designated lunch location. Each salad and sandwich meal will be individually packaged, while hot meals will be served in takeaway format with students selecting their hot meal components. (Nursery School students will continue to bring their lunches from home.) We have redesigned the lunch program based on feedback from parent surveys not only to continue to meet all food safety standards, but also to allow students to select their own meals daily.
COVID-19 is extremely contagious and is believed to spread by person-to-person contact. As a result, federal, state, and District health agencies recommend the wearing of masks indoors, physical distancing, and other measures to mitigate the risk of contracting the virus. St. Patrick’s has planned reasonable preventive policies, protocols, and procedures designed to reduce the spread of COVID-19 on the Day School’s campus for the 2021-2022 school year, which will be updated in response as new information becomes available. Despite the protocols and procedures in place to mitigate the transmission of COVID-19 on campus, there are inherent risks associated with returning to campus. Those who return to campus acknowledge and voluntarily assume these risks.
St. Patrick's Episcopal Day School Continuous Education Plan - Submitted to the Office of the State Superintendent of Education of the District of Columbia - June 2021
All schools in the District of Columbia, including independent schools, were required to submit a plan to the Office of the State Superintendent of Education (OSSE) in June that described their plans to safely reopen in accordance with health and safety guidance. We provide St. Patrick’s response to that requirement here. OSSE sought no revisions to the St. Patrick’s plan.
Please note: St. Patrick’s Fall 2021 Opening Plan, which was posted on September 1, provides a more detailed set of policies and protocols that will guide us during the 2021-2022 school year. That plan—which calls for all students to attend classes on-campus and in-person, five days a week, at all grade levels—will serve to update particular sections in the plan submitted to OSSE, based on recent guidance from OSSE and the District of Columbia Department of Health (DC Health).
- Health & Safety First
- Research Driven & Effectively Communicated
- Flexible, Responsive, & Prepared
- Community Responsibility
All discussions and decisions concerning the opening status of St. Patrick’s Episcopal Day School, in general, and any individual protocol or cluster of protocols, in particular, will keep at the center the health and safety of students, faculty and staff, and the wider community of St. Patrick’s and beyond.
Guiding those discussions will be recommendations—and, where applicable, local regulatory requirements—made by medical professionals, including our Medical Advisory Team, and public-health officials, including the District of Columbia Department of Health (DC Health) and the District of Columbia Office of the State Superintendent of Education (OSSE), informed by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).
We believe that—whenever possible and in ways that protect the health and safety of the community—on-campus, in-person teaching and learning offer the most effective setting for promoting the ongoing growth and development of our students—cognitively, academically, socially and emotionally, spiritually, and physically. Therefore, we will offer a remote-learning program only in specific, rare circumstances, with Head of School approval a requirement.
In the event that conditions require, at least for a time, a more general reliance on St. Patrick’s Anywhere, Our Continuous Learning Plan, we will offer a robust remote-learning program that is accessible on an equitable basis to all of our students and families, promotes sustained student engagement, and supports continuity and depth of learning, continuity and depth of community, and continuity and depth of care.
School-based efforts alone will be unsuccessful in promoting the health and safety of our students, faculty and staff, and wider community. Therefore, we have identified certain Community-Wide Expectations to Keep St. Patrick’s Safe with which we will require students, families/households, and faculty and staff to comply.
External Resources & Guidelines
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and the District of Columbia Department of Health (DC Health) provide guidelines for the reopening of Kindergarten-Grade 12 schools and childcare programs, the latter through the Office of State Superintendent of Education (OSSE).
In particular, St. Patrick’s has relied on DC Health’s recommendations as articulated in OSSE’s August 6 (Travel), August 9 (OSSE statement), August 11 (Childcare Facilities), and August 20 (PK-Grade 12 Schools, revising August 6 and August 18 Guidance), 2021 as a roadmap for developing this plan.