Health and Safety Updates for SY 2022-23
September 8, 2022
Dear School District of Philadelphia Parents & Families,
As students and staff settle into the new school year, we want to share a few health and safety updates and reminders with you.
We have revised our General COVID-19 Protocols for the 2022-2023 school year to provide additional clarity to the protocols we released at the beginning of August. You can review the entire protocol, and see the revisions listed clearly at the top, here.
Starting next week, masking will be optional but strongly encouraged. As outlined in the protocols, the District may temporarily reinstate a masking requirement in specific circumstances, including when the COVID-19 Community Level is high based on the CDC COVID-19 Community Level Indicators. We recognize that some children have conditions that may prevent them from safely or effectively wearing a mask. In these instances, parents or guardians can complete an Accommodation Request form which can be found on the Health & Safety Protocols website.
To further support healthy school environments, parents and guardians are encouraged to schedule children for the COVID-19 and flu vaccine. All school-age children are eligible for these vaccines, both of which are proven to be highly effective at preventing illness and can be administered by your child’s doctor or at a local pharmacy.
Finally, the District continues to work closely with the Philadelphia Department of Public Health to monitor monkeypox cases in Philadelphia. Based on current data, the combined risks of infection among children and spread in schools is very low. Visit the Health & Safety Protocols website to find a Monkeypox Information for Families document that provides an overview of monkeypox, how to identify it, and what to do if your child develops symptoms or tests positive.
The District is committed to keeping you informed of any updates or changes to public health conditions in our schools. You can always find the latest information by visiting the Covid-19 Information Hub or the Health & Safety Protocols website.
Dr. Kendra McDow
Dr. Kendra B. McDow
The School District of Philadelphia
School District Medical Officer