What are Excel’s COVID health and safety plans for SY ‘21-22?
Excel Academy will implement a multi-layered plan to reduce risk of COVID transmission in our schools. Excel’s plans are in line with recommendations from the Massachusetts Department of Public Health (DPH) and Department of Elementary and Secondary Education (DESE). The layers of mitigation in place at Excel Academy include:
- Vaccination: Among Excel’s student body, more than 50% of all students have received their first dose or are fully vaccinated against COVID as of mid-August. Additionally, 95% of Excel’s staff members are vaccinated. We continue to work with staff and families to promote vaccination of all our eligible community members.
- Masks: At all campuses, students and staff members will wear a mask inside school buildings regardless of their vaccination status. Students should come to school with a multi-layered cloth mask or a paper mask. This practice is called universal mask-wearing. Students and staff members may remove their masks outdoors and during lunch and designated mask breaks. Excel may revise this policy if state guidance changes over the course of the school year.
- Contact Tracing: Excel will follow state guidelines for contact tracing and exclusion from school for individuals who have COVID symptoms or are exposed to someone known to have COVID.
- Ventilation: Excel schools have strong mechanical ventilation (HVAC), meeting or exceeding targets set by public health leaders for increased ventilation in response to COVID.
- Testing: Excel will implement an on-site COVID testing program sponsored by the Department of Education. This will involve weekly routine COVID testing of unvaccinated school community members, both students and staff. Excel will maintain this testing program as long as our local communities are classified in yellow or red in the state’s COVID monitoring system.