Important Health and Safety Updates for GEC Students
March 29, 2022
Dear GEC Students:
We hope your Term 4 is going well! It is hard to believe we are already at the mid-point of the Term! We understand this school year is taking place during a challenging time as the pandemic continues, and it is our top priority to ensure the health and safety of our entire community and to ensure continued access to your educational journey.
We thank everyone for following our COVID-19 health and safety protocols in the building. To continue to keep our community safe and ensure timely responses when needed, it is important to continue following our protocols. Additionally, we are writing this letter to share some updates to our protocols.
As you might know already, DC Health and DCPS have lifted the mask mandate for schools as of March 18, 2022.
In light of the low community spread reported by DC Health, which is the reason for the newly released guidance, GEC will be adopting the following policy changes for our return from spring break.
- Return from spring break required testing: Spring break is April 11th – April 15th. Rapid antigen testing is required before returning to GEC from break for staff and students who come to the building (PCR test not required).
- Rapid antigen tests must be picked up before spring break and submitted to the DC Health portal (https://coronavirus.dc.gov/page/rapid-test-result-submission-portal) before coming to school on Monday, April 18th.
- Any positive result must be shared with the coach for next steps.
- We have a separate document for reporting the test results.
- Quarantine length (positive COVID case): Beginning on April 25, 2022, the quarantine length for a COVID-19 positive case will be 5 days (with a negative test) vs. the 7-10 day quarantine period.
- Mask requirements: Beginning on April 25, 2022, Masks will be optional inside the GEC school building for all students and all fully vaccinated staff members, visitors, and vendors. We want staff and students to make the choice for themselves, but they will no longer be required for community members who fit the above criteria.
- Any GEC staff member with an approved vaccination exemption will still be required to wear a mask in alignment with DC Health and DCPS guidance.
We will continue to monitor all health and safety guidance released by DC Health and OSSE which continues to inform GEC’s COVID response. The above changes to the health and safety updates are subject to change if there is a shift in the community spread and new DC Health guidance is released.
Our goal is to continue to create a strong community in our current learning environment, while always ensuring health and safety are our top priority.
We are extremely proud of our community and thank each student for your commitment to your education journey! We will continue to keep you posted of any changes to our policies and protocols based on any future DC Health guidance. We are also in the process of updating our GEC Health and Safety Plan aligned to the changes shared here and will send out revised copies to our community and it will also be posted on our GEC website.
As always, please reach out to me with any questions you may have.
Dr. Chelsea Kirk