Last week, we shared our plan for our hybrid program during the upcoming holiday season. To recap:
Thanksgiving Break (November 25-29). For Thanksgiving, we are asking everyone in the Sheridan community to refrain from traveling to states designated as “hot spots” by the DC government or internationally and to participate only in small gatherings (no more than 10pp, approx.).
Hybrid Learning (November 30th-December 18th). School will resume on Monday, November 30th, and continue in hybrid learning mode until Friday, December 18th. Any students who traveled to a hot spot state or internationally over the Thanksgiving Break will be required to quarantine and simulcast for 14 days before returning to on-campus learning.
Winter Break (December 18th-January 3rd). Winter Break will begin on December 18th @ 12pm and last until January 3rd. Any travel to hot spot states or internationally will be at the discretion of individuals and must be mindful of the precautions recommended by health officials.
Distance Learning (January 4th-January 15th). For the first two weeks after Winter Break, we will operate in distance learning mode to ensure anyone who has traveled to a hot spot or internationally has observed the required 14-day quarantine before returning to in-person learning.
Return to Hybrid Learning (January 19th). We will observe Martin Luther King, Jr. Day on Monday, January 18th, and return to hybrid learning mode on Tuesday, January 19th. Wednesday, January 20th, which was previously scheduled to be a day off due to travel concerns related to Inauguration Day, will now be a learning day (virtual as per the hybrid plan).
With this plan, we hope to maximize the amount of time our students can be on campus through the end of the calendar year, while making space for everyone in our community to enjoy some much-needed time with family and friends.
Below are answers to the most frequently asked questions sent to us after this plan was shared last week:
What if we have family coming to visit from hot spot locations? Consistent with Sheridan‘s policy on travel to hot spots, we discourage hosting of travelers from hot spots, and note that ANYONE arriving from a hot spot state must self-quarantine for 14 days upon arrival, including individuals who are visiting. If you must host a visitor, we encourage you to request they get tested within 72 hours prior to their arrival to minimize risk to the Sheridan community. At this time, DC Health does not require students to remain at home for 14 days if an individual from a hot spot location has visited their home.
Are families allowed to travel by air? We do not have a policy that prohibits air travel, but we encourage all Sheridan parents to be mindful of the increased risk of airplane travel during the busy holiday season. Please read the CDC’s guidance on air travel closely and consider foregoing elective travel given the high and rising rates of COVID across the country.
Who can be included in small gatherings? A number of jurisdictions, including DC, are tracing COVID-19 outbreaks to small gatherings. As a result, medical experts such as Dr. Anthony Fauci and others are encouraging individuals to limit their holiday gatherings to their individual households or very small circles of family or friends. The CDC has issued guidance on holiday gatherings that offers useful considerations for planning or attending a holiday celebration, and we strongly encourage all Sheridan community members to follow it.
How can I know that my fellow community members won’t put me at risk? We are all in this together. While it’s impossible to control all of the choices of others, we can— and have—put protocols in place to reduce our collective risk. From our Community Covenant to our survey of holiday plans and our extensive risk mitigation measures at school, we have systems in place that make the likelihood of community spread very low, even if someone does contract the virus outside of school. We have been pleased by the transparency we have seen from families so far about potential risk factors such as travel and illness, and we have high expectations that this partnership will continue.
A reminder that we need EVERY family to complete the Holiday Planning Survey by 12pm on Tuesday, October 27th.
As always, we are immensely grateful for your partnership as we work to keep our students in school, and our community — and the community around us — healthy.