Happy for Back to School!
Safe start to the 2021-22 school year as students return to in-person learning
The anticipation has been building as our elementary and middle school students and staff look forward to the tradition of coming on to a school campus for the first day of the school year. Though hidden by masks and face coverings, we know there will be plenty of happy smiles as we greet each other in person.
“It has already been a joy to visit some of the orientations that our schools have offered to welcome students back and for some to welcome them to campus for the first time,” said Superintendent Shelly Viramontez.
“We know the work we are trained to do is to educate students to their highest potential, and we also continue in our commitment to keep our students safe. We will be observing the K-12 Guidance from the California Department of Public Health (CDPH)."
For those who just want the highlights:
- Face Coverings: Everyone on campus must wear a mask or face covering (unless exempted) while indoors. They are encouraged, but optional outdoors for students and staff. Parents who are walking their student to class must wear a mask at all times while on campus.
Parents who want their students to wear the masks at all times, even outside, can instruct their students to do so.
The CDPH Guidance also requires that masks be worn during indoor sports and physical education classes, and encourages those who are unvaccinated to wear face coverings when they are in large crowded groups outside.
- Physical Distance: There is currently no applicable minimum physical distancing requirement.
- Vaccinations: All district employees are vaccinated against COVID-19 or will provide a weekly negative test. We are fortunate that Santa Clara County has among the highest vaccination rates in the nation, providing better protection to our students and community than in most of the U.S.
It remains critical that more individuals get vaccinated to further protect the community, particularly children, the elderly, and people who are immunocompromised. Vaccination sites throughout the county continue to accept drop-ins for COVID-19 vaccines and same-day appointments are also available. Visit sccfreevax.org for the latest information and updates.
- Testing and Quarantining: The guidance allows for modified quarantining so that classes may continue in-person instruction—with specific COVID testing requirements—if a positive case is discovered in that class. Testing students will require parent permission, and there will be no out-of-pocket cost to the family. There is an online meeting scheduled for 5:30 p.m., Thursday, August 19th. (See the related story here.)
- Exposure Notifications: Suspected COVID cases are investigated thoroughly in partnership with the County Public Health Department. Those identified as Close Contacts will receive an official notice with instructions as to what actions to take. Our district also publishes a COVID-19 dashboard that shows positive cases among students and staff by school. We continue to balance our desire to be transparent with our community while protecting the privacy rights of individuals.
For those who want more details:
Our district's Safe School Opening Plan has more information. For school-specific details please visit the website of your child’s school or contact the school office.