Health & Safety Information

Updated Health & Safety Measures for Summer 2022

APS is committed to providing learning environments that are healthy and safe for all students. We continue to adapt our COVID-19 mitigation measures based on current conditions in Arlington, in accordance with the latest guidance from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and Virginia Department of Health (VDH). Our goal is to provide school environments that are not only open and safe for full-time in-person learning, but are also accessible and welcoming to all students, families and community members.

The following are our current health and safety measures for the 2022 Summer School program. Any updates for the 2022-23 school year will be communicated prior to the start of school.


Masks  |  Vaccinations  |  Contact Tracing  |  COVID Testing  |  Positive Case Reporting  |  Quarantine  |  Visitors  |  Additional Prevention Strategies

Masks Optional 

In accordance with Virginia law and the CDC’s updated health guidance issued on February 25, 2022, masks are optional in school or on school buses for APS students, staff, visitors, and volunteers. APS is committed to inclusive, welcoming classrooms, and students will not be separated or grouped based on mask preferences.
Check the current transmission levels in Arlington County

Mask Guidance Low Transmission Medium Transmission High Transmission
Staff Optional Recommended Required
Student Optional Recommended Required*
Student Athlete Optional Recommended Required*^

*Parents/Guardians will be allowed to opt students out
^Student athletes participating in weekly testing will not be required to wear a mask

APS will continue to review and adjust our policies in accordance with guidance from the CDC, VDH and VDOE.

Vaccination

COVID-19 vaccination remains the best protection against severe illness. Receiving a booster shot when eligible increases an individual’s protection, and students aged 5 and older are now eligible for the booster. APS encourages everyone who is eligible to get vaccinated and boosted. Staff are required to be vaccinated or to submit to weekly testing. Find out more about COVID-19 vaccination and where to find a vaccination clinic on the Arlington County website.

Contact Tracing/Case Notification

APS has discontinued contact tracing for individual cases as of June 17. The Virginia Department of Health no longer requires schools to contact-trace individual COVID-19 cases. Contract tracing will occur if there is an outbreak at a school. Families and staff will continue to get a daily notification if a COVID-19 case has been reported to the school that day. The daily communication is for information purposes only.

COVID Testing and Test to Stay

The Test-to-Stay program for unvaccinated individuals as well as symptomatic testing at school locations has been discontinued as of June 17.  APS will continue to provide weekly surveillance testing at all school locations and at Syphax for staff and students as a preventative measure to detect asymptomatic COVID cases and prevent the spread.

Staff and families who wish to participate must OPT IN. Please view the updated summer schedule for weekly testing online and opt in today, if you have not done so.

Reporting a Positive COVID test

The Qualtrics daily health screener has been discontinued.

If your student tests positive for COVID-19, please use the link below to report their case to the school division. You will need their student ID to login. If you need assistance completing the form, please contact your school directly.

If you are an APS employee and you test positive for COVID-19, please use the link below to complete your self-report.

Quarantine and Isolation

Close contacts who are up to date with vaccines or who have had Covid-19 within the last 6 months do not need to quarantine unless they develop symptoms. If you develop symptoms get tested. In the event of a school-based outbreak, APS will support contact tracing as needed to reduce sustained transmission in the school setting. Before students and staff may return to school, they must have completed isolation and/or quarantine periods as appropriate. Staff and students who meet the CDC definition of a close contact and who are not up to date with vaccinations should complete a quarantine period.

Students with Symptoms

To return to school, students must present with the following:

    • A negative provider-attended antigen or PCR test OR
    • Provider clearance and alternate diagnosis OR
    • Isolation for 5 days. The student may return on days 6-10 when the following criteria are met: ​
      • Fever free for 24 hours (without the use of fever-reducing medication)
      • Symptoms are improving
      • Student wears a well-fitting mask for 5 additional days (day 6 through day 10) after the end of the 5-day isolation period, in accordance with Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) guidance
      • If students are unable to wear a mask when around others, they are to continue to isolate for a full 10 days at home.

Students with Positive Covid-19 Test

Students that are COVID positive will isolate for 5 days regardless of vaccination status. Students can return on day 6 if they meet the following:

    • Fever-free for 24 hours without fever-reducing medication
    • Symptoms are improving or have gone away completely
    • Students can wear a well-fitting mask for days 6-10
    • If student cannot wear a mask, they will isolate for 10 days and return on day 11

An exclusion letter will be sent to the positive student with a return date. A community notification will go out via School Talk informing the school community there was a positive case.

Visitors

APS is pleased to reopen our schools to visitors, volunteers and parents/guardians. All visitors must check in at the front office and sign in using the Visitor Management System.

Additional Layered Prevention Strategies

Adherence to our layered prevention strategies has kept all schools open for safe, in-person learning since day one of the 2021-22 school year. APS will continue to provide thorough cleaning and disinfecting of our facilities, with emphasis on frequently touched surfaces, and will reinforce hand hygiene and healthy habits, as well as make use of outside spaces and implement strategies to improve ventilation as we have done throughout the 2021-22 school year.