Read our August 2022 Health and Safety Update (published August 8, 2022) to learn more about:
- COVID Testing
- Quarantine and Isolation
- Layered Mitigation
- Situational Distance Learning
- Additional Preventive Measures
Health guidance from the CDC and DC Health, lessons learned from other schools, community transmission trends, and feedback from staff and families inform our fall policies for the 2022-2023 School Year. We are committed to ensuring an in-person school experience that is rooted in our EL Education model while maintaining an approach that also maximizes safety for students, staff, and families.
We will provide transparency on planning, frequently communicate, and offer many opportunities for feedback. Families can always reach out to our Family Engagement Team with questions at email@example.com or 202-556-3815.
WEEKLY COVID DASHBOARD AND NEWSLETTER
Families can access COVID-related data and information in our weekly dashboard sent to all families in our Monday newsletter. Stay connected by reading this newsletter weekly.
MULTI-LAYERED MITIGATION STRATEGY
The health of our community is a top priority. We will continue to implement a multi-layered mitigation strategy that includes promoting vaccination, universal mask wearing indoors regardless of vaccination status, and weekly COVID testing of students and all staff. We will keep indoor spaces well ventilated, use air filtration, and provide enhanced cleaning. Hand sanitizer will also be available at entrances and throughout the building. We are maintaining smaller classes this school year and will provide individual desks in all classrooms. Learm more in our August 2022 Health and Safety Update.
WEEKLY INDIVIDUAL COVID TESTING
We will continue a robust asymptomatic screening program for COVID-19 by PCR testing one school campus per week on a rotating schedule. Capital City will typically receive results within 24-36 hours. Families will be notified within 24 hours of learning the results if their student tests positive and 36 hours if their student is a close contact of a positive case. All teachers/staff in the school building must also test weekly.
TEST-TO-STAY FOR CLOSE CONTACTS
To minimize the need for close contacts to quarantine, Capital City will conduct rapid antigen tests for all students and staff who are close contacts. All students will participate in our testing program unless a family completes an opt-out form.
With support from the Health and Safety Team, and under a CLIA waiver, students will self-administer rapid antigen tests at school. The Health and Safety Team will monitor results and follow up with families of students who test positive.
QUARANTINE AND ISOLATION
With our individual PCR testing and test-to-stay program, quarantines should be rare. If a student or staff member tests positive for COVID-19, the isolation period is 5 days. If their symptoms have improved and they can provide a negative antigen test taken on day 6, they can return to the school building. If the test is positive, the isolation period is 10 days.
Capital City is encouraging all families to keep their children up-to-date with COVID-19 vaccinations to ensure the highest level of protection against severe disease.
The CDC, DC Health, and Capital City strongly encourage all individuals 6 months and older to get vaccinated — including boosters when eligible. Vaccines significantly lower the risk of serious disease and hospitalization. Vaccinations are free and readily accessible. Find a location to get vaccinated here.
- Staff: All Capital City staff must be up-to-date (fully vaccinated with a booster vaccine when eligible) or be approved for a religious or medical exemption. 100% of all staff are up-to-date on their COVID-19 vaccination or approved for an exemption.
- Students 12 years and older: At least two COVID-19 vaccinations are required for students eligible for fully FDA-approved vaccines as part of the city’s “No Shots, No School” policy and students who are not fully immunized will not be able to attend school or receive distance learning. Read more here. Currently, students age 12 and older are required to be fully vaccinated for COVID-19 for SY 2022-23.
Have questions about the COVID-19 vaccine? Check out this article by doctors from Johns Hopkins Medicine regarding myths vs facts about the vaccine.
ABSENCES AND SITUATIONAL DISTANCE LEARNING
Students in quarantine or isolation will no longer participate in virtual learning. All students will learn in person during the school year. If students must isolate after testing positive for COVID-19, teachers will provide work through our Learning Management Systems (Seesaw, Google Classroom, or Canvas) when feasible. The focus, however, will be catching students up when they return to the classroom. Absences will be excused during quarantine or isolation.
Capital City will only move to situational distance learning if we do not have adequate staff to operate the school (25% absent) or for any weather or facilities-related closure beyond one day.
If a student will be absent from school for any reason, a parent or guardian should notify the school stating clearly: their child’s name, parent/guardian’s name, the date of the absence, and the reason for the absence. Notification before the student is absent is preferred and should happen in one of the following ways:
Extracurricular activities and other structures: We are excited to resume in-person extracurricular activities for all grades and look forward to strong participation. Vaccination is not required but attendance will be recorded for contact tracing. Fieldwork and adventure will also resume with masking and parent/caregiver permission.
Arrival and Dismissal: We will return to a single arrival time (8:30am) and dismissal time (3:30pm with early dismissal on Wednesdays at 1pm for teacher professional development) for all grades but will continue to use three entrances:
- High School students will enter by the fields
- Middle School students and 1st-4th graders will enter through the main entrance off Peabody St
- PreK & K students will enter through the cafeteria entrance
- Parents/Caregivers: Due to the high volume of people, families will not be allowed in the building during arrival and dismissal. However, families will be welcome in the building for events and other opportunities. All family members must follow the indoor masking policy and have no symptoms of COVID-19. For contact tracing, we will require a record of attendance and contact information. If family members will be in classrooms and working around children, a negative rapid antigen test or PCR test result is required. Proof of vaccination is not required.
- Non-Parents/Caregivers: For the safety of our community, all external visitors must follow the indoor masking policy, have no symptoms of COVID-19, and submit a negative rapid antigen test or PCR test result. For contact tracing, we will require a record of attendance and contact information. Proof of vaccination is not required.
- Events: We will welcome visitors for events when community transmission levels are Low/Medium and with the following conditions: required masking, no symptoms of COVID-19, and a record of attendance and contact information (for contact tracing). Proof of vaccination is not required.
- For general support, email firstname.lastname@example.org.
- For questions related to our health and safety protocols, including COVID-19, contact our Health and Safety Team at email@example.com.
- For campus-specific questions for Lower School, contact Office Manage Carolina Romero at firstname.lastname@example.org.
- For campus-specific questions for Middle School, contact Office Manager Veronica Ramirez at email@example.com.
- For campus-specific questions for High School, contact Office Manager Yanira Cuellar at firstname.lastname@example.org.