On July 12th, the California Department of Public Health (CDPH) released updated Public Health Guidance for K-12 Schools in California. The foundational principle of this guidance is that all students must have access to safe and full in-person instruction and to as much instructional time as possible. The guidance focuses on:
- vaccination for all eligible individuals to get COVID-19 rates down throughout the community
- universal masking in schools, which enables no minimum physical distancing
- allowing all students access to full in-person learning
- more targeted quarantine practices
- access to a robust COVID-19 testing program
Universal masking will remain in effect. CDPH will continue to assess conditions on an ongoing basis, and will determine no later than November 1, 2021, whether to update mask requirements or recommendations.
Some of the notable safety measures include:
- Masks are optional outdoors for all in K-12 school settings.
- K-12 students are required to mask indoors, with exemptions per CDPH face mask guidance. Adults in K-12 school settings are required to mask when sharing indoor spaces with students.
- Persons exempted from wearing a face covering due to a medical condition, must wear a non-restrictive alternative, such as a face shield with a drape on the bottom edge, as long as their condition permits it.
- For indoor spaces, ventilation should be optimized, which can be done by following CDPH Guidance on Ventilation of Indoor Environments and Ventilation and Filtration to Reduce Long-Range Airborne Transmission of COVID-19 and Other Respiratory Infections: Considerations for Reopened Schools.
- Per AB 86 (2021) and California Code Title 17, section 2500, schools are required to report COVID-19 cases to the local public health department.
- Schools or LEAs should have a COVID-19 liaison to assist the local health department with contact tracing
To view the full guidance, including many links and resources, please click here. Should you have any questions regarding this guidance, please don’t hesitate to reach out to our Member Services Department.