COVID Health and Safety - 2021-22 School Year
A few minor changes have been made to the health and safety protocols in NPS school buildings. You can find the changes highlighted in the updated Health and Safety Plan document linked below:
Masks Optional Beginning March 8, 2022
On March 7, 2022, the Newton School Committee voted to rescind the mask policy in the Newton Public Schools. Beginning March 8, 2022, masks will be OPTIONAL in our K-12 school buildings.
In this new mask-optional environment, we will emphasize personal choice and responsibility around masking. There will be many reasons students and staff continue to wear masks. There will be reasons students and staff decide not to wear a mask. All decisions will be supported and we will ask our school communities to be respectful of others’ individual choices.
Please note, masks will still be required in the following circumstances:
- Individuals returning from COVID infection on days 6-10 (CDC requires 10 days of masking, regardless of vaccination status)
Individuals who are unvaccinated and returning from quarantine on days 6-10
- In nursing/health offices
- Newton Early Childhood Program (NECP)
- Certain school environments (assemblies, field trips, music class) - please continue to send your student to school with a mask in the event it is needed.
Please view this helpful slide presentation developed by Maria Kolbe: Slide Presentation - Something New! Mask Choice.
Here is the revised health and safety plan: Health and Safety Plan - Revised March 2022
We know this is a significant change for our students and staff filled with many different emotions. We will continue to work with students to help them to understand the changes and how they can support each other in the personal decisions they will make with their families. As always, we will continue to monitor the health and safety conditions with the goal of promoting a healthy learning environment for all of our students and staff.
January 2022 - New COVID-19 Testing Program
On January 18, 2022, the Department of Elementary and Secondary Education (DESE) announced a new COVID-19 testing program for students and staff in schools across Massachusetts. The new testing program provides at-home rapid antigen tests to all students and staff who opt-in to the program. Please visit our COVID-19 Testing webpage (link) for details, including information on how families can opt-in.