Posted on August 12, 2022
Categories: News from SDP

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August 12, 2022

Dear School District of Philadelphia Parents & Families,

The first day of school is Monday, August 29th and we are excited to welcome our students and staff back to our classrooms for in-person learning. The School District of Philadelphia and the Philadelphia Department of Public Health (PDPH) have been working closely throughout the summer, monitoring local COVID-19 conditions, and following federal and local public health guidance to determine the best health and safety measures to mitigate the spread of COVID-19 as students return to school.

For the first 10 days of the new school year – from August 29 through September 9 – all students and staff will be required to wear masks while in school, regardless of the COVID-19 Community Level. This is an extra precaution for everyone’s health and well-being since increased end-of-summer social gatherings may heighten the risk of exposure to COVID-19. Masking may then become optional under specific circumstances.  Our updated General COVID-19 Protocols for SY 2022-2023 can be found here. Here are the highlights:

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Monkeypox may also be top of mind for our families and staff. Please know that we are working closely with PDPH to monitor the situation, and we will seek guidance from PDPH and the Centers for Disease Control to identify any needed safety measures for our schools. We will update you as more information is available. In the meantime, we will continue to implement enhanced cleaning and disinfecting procedures daily in schools and offices, paying special attention to high-touch areas such as bathroom facilities, desks and doorknobs.

You can always find the latest information, including information about upcoming Health & Safety Town Halls for families, by visiting the Covid-19 Information Hub. As COVID-19 and other public health matters continue to evolve, so too will our response. The last several years have taught us all that by working together and remaining flexible as needed, we can support the healthy in-person learning environments our students need. We look forward to working together with you as we welcome students back to school on August 29th.

Dr. Kendra McDow                              Dr. Cheryl Bettigole
The School District of Philadelphia   Philadelphia Department of Health
School District Medical Officer           Commissioner of Health