July 28, 2021
Dear Catholic School Families of the Diocese of Oakland,
Preparations are underway to begin the 2021-2022 academic year with the intention of hosting each student at school, on-campus. In concert with the principals, presidents, and pandemic liaisons, the Catholic Schools Office is working on site-based plans that incorporate state and county-specific mandates, in addition to proven safety practices, to help ensure the continued health and well-being of each one of our community members.
The California Department of Public Health (CDPH) released guidance for kindergarten-12 schools reflecting recent updates from the Center for Disease Control (CDC) with the overarching goal of ensuring on-campus access to education for each student. Physical distancing and cohort scheduling are no longer required. The elimination of certain guidelines will continue to help us welcome all of our students back to campus for full-time, in-person instruction and activities.
The State of California Department of Public Health’s guidance also provides a less restrictive quarantining policy that will ensure even further access to on-campus learning for our students. We are keeping up-to-date on guidance regarding quarantine contingencies as interpreted by Contra Costa and Alameda counties. The State of California is requiring face coverings for all students attending school on-campus in addition to supporting a robust testing program to help prevent the spread of the Covid-19 virus. While we acknowledge our school families may have a variety of viewpoints regarding the face covering mandate, The Diocese of Oakland will observe the mandate for face coverings indoors for students, staff, teachers, and visitors in each of our Catholic schools. Face coverings are optional for outdoor activities.
Each of our Catholic school leaders is working on adapting and updating their site-specific safety plans that will be communicated to respective school communities with details on the operation of the school day with regards to the health and safety updates issued by the State of California. I look forward to another great school year for the Diocese of Oakland’s Catholic school principals, teachers, and staff members, who persevere for our students by adapting educational models and continuing to supply an excellent, Catholic education. I also thank each of our families for entrusting us with the education and Catholic formation of your children. We thank Jesus Christ for carrying us thus far through the challenges of the pandemic and will continue to rely upon Him for inspiration and strength as we begin the 2021/2022 academic year.
At your service,
Andrew T. Currier, PhD
Department of Catholic School