Health and Wellbeing
Welcome to Cary Academy’s COVID planning pages
2ere you will find a variety of information regarding campus plans for the 2022-2023school year. Please understand that in this fluid situation, and information can change rapidly. The Campus Guidelines page contains details about campus operations and specific expectations for the CA community in 2022-2023.
Designing for Safety (and Excellence)
Driven by Mission and Strategic Vision
As always, our school mission and current strategic vision remain front and center, a driving force in shaping Cary Academy’s response to the pandemic. While this period is undoubtedly challenging, it also presents unique opportunities to respond with different learning modalities and approaches that support and advance our larger vision.
A learning community committed to discovery, innovation, collaboration, and excellence
Cary Academy will create personalized learning opportunities that are flexible and relevant in an environment that supports student wellbeing. We will cultivate self-directed and bold life-long learners who make meaningful contributions to the world.
In planning for the next school year, we are operating under the following assumptions:
- we are going through a monumentally stressful and disruptive time in history, and we should not expect to flip a switch back to “normal;”
- there will be heightened attention to matters of wellness and public health which will impact our students, their families and the format which learning needs to occur;
- various formal and informal forms of social distancing will continue; and
- coronavirus waves are predicted to cause future short-term, place-specific stay-at-home orders for the foreseeable future.
Planning for 2022-2023
- Education about the virus and how to stay healthy
- Program adjustments to maximize inividual and community wellness
- Physical and social adjustments to minimize risk of exposure
- Monitoring regional and local outbreaks to understand community risk
- Ensuring individuals coming to campus are of low risk of spreading illness
- Tracking individual cases and trending illnesses within our community
- Communicating with local health authorities and internal community
- Adjusting operational modes
- Implementing cleaning and disinfecting protocols
Welcome email from Dr. Ehrhardt (8/03/22)
Dear Parents and Students,
We look forward to seeing everybody back on campus next week!
For those of you not yet regularly looking at your calendar (yea, summer!) – the first day of school is next Wednesday, August 10. Middle school start time this year remains at 8:45am and the US start time is slightly adjusted from last year to 9:00am.
Over the last few years, my summer communication was driven primarily by the need to share updates to our COVID response. While COVID is by no means fully behind us, we will not be introducing any new protocols to start this year. We will begin in the same way we ended:
- Wearing a mask is generally optional.
- We will require that students wear masks in some larger group, indoor settings — such as all-division meetings in the theater. Those circumstances will be communicated on a case-by-case basis, so we ask all students to bring a mask daily.
- We will follow CDC guidelines for known cases of COVID. Generally, this is five days in isolation regardless of symptoms (or longer if you are still symptomatic) and then mask wearing the first five days you are back on campus.
- The CDC no longer requires isolation for exposure (as long as you are symptom free), even if that exposure is in your family. However, if you have been exposed and there is an active case in your home, we ask that you test and wear a mask at school for 10 days.
- We are still asking that you report COVID cases to our school nurse, Emily McClintock. She can then advise if there is uncertainty about protocols.
By the end of the school year in June, we had perhaps 20% of individuals still wearing masks daily. We expect (hope, actually), that this number might be higher as we gather to start the year. We want people to stay healthy so that nobody must sit out of school during these opening weeks (and risk falling behind early in the year). Being thoughtful on when and where to put on a mask is also a good strategy. We continue with outdoor lunches as we start the year, to help with health and allow people who are wearing masks a bit of a breather!
Communication from the School
At this time, I hope that you all have been seeing some of the email communication coming from the divisions and athletics. If you have not – and this is for parents in particular – please check your spam folders. We’d encourage checking those folders for the next few weeks, to make sure that you don’t miss any important notifications.
Generally, the most regular form of communication you will receive from the school will be the CA Weekly that comes out each Thursday afternoon via email. This contains some nice tidbits about what is happening at the school, a few shoutouts, and calendar updates/reminders. There will be other information coming directly from the PTAA, Development office, Athletics, or the MS and US offices – which is generally targeted to a specific audience. You can also look at the Blackbaud Resource Board for information, and this is where you will find handbooks and such – as well as compilations of some important information that may have been shared previously via email. Most of our permission slips are now digitally viewed and signed via Blackbaud.
Please don’t take the prosaic nature of this email as a lack of enthusiasm about the upcoming year. Our faculty and staff are very excited to welcome everybody back next week. This is going to be a tremendous year, full of wonderful learning inside and outside of the classroom. We also look forward to bringing back several things that have been shelved during the pandemic and to solidifying some new traditions.
Students, I look forward to seeing you all Wednesday morning! Parents, keep an eye out on the CA Weekly for details on a PTAA-hosted, mid-September social for parents. We are thrilled to be able to get back to the business of seeing one-another!